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Old 08-12-2014, 08:17 PM   #41
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Hearing about Robin Williams is just so sad.

My mother had terrible depression all of her life, she just wasn't very good at her suicide attempts and finally found proper medication in her 50's and lived until age 83.

As a kid it was so hard to understand her episodes. She had a husband and family who loved her, a nice house, financial security, what could she be depressed about? There was no "about". It had nothing to do with her external world, it was internal. We didn't know what to call what was going on, I remember asking my Dad if it was a nervous breakdown, whatever that was. He said it wasn't, but he didn't have a better name for it. We just accepted it for what it was, another bad time for Mom and we tried to remain supportive.

When she finally found proper medication and was in a good period she was able to explain to me some of what she lived with. She lived under a black cloud and could not feel joy and saw everyone else happy and bright and sunny and joyful. It wasn't until she got the proper medication that her black cloud lifted and she could feel what the rest of us feel. I was so happy for her!

Eventually, she needed higher and higher doses and had terrible side effects and had to change meds. Nothing else worked as well and she ended up having ECT (electro convulsive therapy) treatments. These worked well for the depression but were tough in her elderly years.

I've been a fan of Robin Williams in many of his films and especially his comedy performances. All the talk on tv about his depression is hard to get through but it's important for people to talk openly about the tough stuff.





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Old 08-12-2014, 09:01 PM   #42
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From the talk on tv about depression, I was surprised to learn that annually there are even more deaths from suicide than car accidents. That's pretty difficult to get my mind around.

I remember this one guy back in college who lived in the dorm next to me. He lost both his mother and sister from suicide. I remember talking to him and trying to point out the good things in the world and he have a way of flipping things around and seeing the glass as half empty. It was sad to the point of being around him would get me down.

I'm sure in weeks to come more details will come out about Robin Williams like what happened the days between when he checked himself in to rehab to when he took his life. A part of me asks, as I read that he was suffering from a very deep depression, that why wasn't he committed for care. Or perhaps he was as he wasn't seen in public for 3 weeks after he went to rehab. I'm sure in time the info will come out.

But in the meantime, it's best to focus on the joy and laughter that he brought. His body of work.
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Old 08-12-2014, 09:18 PM   #43
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Very sad, way too soon. Sorry to hear the pain he must have gone through while giving others so much joy. He was so quick and funny, genius. RIP
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Old 08-13-2014, 08:42 AM   #44
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I believe RW was diagnosed with manic depression, or bipolar disorder, as it's now known. I have one very good friend who struggles with this. It can be "controlled" to an extent, through drugs and therapy and lifestyle adaptations, though drug side-effects can be tough, and many times, during the manic state, sufferers feel so good that they stop taking their meds.

As for depression, I lost a very close friend to suicide resulting from depression...

There is a lot of info on the interweb, for anyone dealing with mental illness, either as the "patient" or as a family member, caregiver, or friend. As a layperson, there's not much you can do to "fix" mental illness, but knowledge allows you to adapt. (Note, I didn't say "understand", because, unless you're actually trying to live with BP, depression, anxiety, etc., you really can't fully understand...)

I read somewhere that if you take your worst day, and multiply it by 1000, you'll understand depression.
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Old 08-13-2014, 09:23 AM   #45
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From the talk on tv about depression, I was surprised to learn that annually there are even more deaths from suicide than car accidents. That's pretty difficult to get my mind around.

I remember this one guy back in college who lived in the dorm next to me. He lost both his mother and sister from suicide. I remember talking to him and trying to point out the good things in the world and he have a way of flipping things around and seeing the glass as half empty. It was sad to the point of being around him would get me down.

I'm sure in weeks to come more details will come out about Robin Williams like what happened the days between when he checked himself in to rehab to when he took his life. A part of me asks, as I read that he was suffering from a very deep depression, that why wasn't he committed for care. Or perhaps he was as he wasn't seen in public for 3 weeks after he went to rehab. I'm sure in time the info will come out.

But in the meantime, it's best to focus on the joy and laughter that he brought. His body of work.
I think the ubiquity of mental illness in the US (1 in 4 adults), and elsewhere, is simply not known by most folks. Truth be told, almost all of us likely have a close friend or family member that suffers from mental illness. I know that's the case for me.

Given that mental illness is one of (or the) most common chronic disease of today, it's a shame that we still have so much progress to make toward treating it properly and effectively.

http://www.nami.org/factsheets/menta..._factsheet.pdf

Having said that, I too will miss Robin Williams' comic genious. He brought many a smile to my face....Nan-nu, Nan-nu!
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Old 08-13-2014, 10:24 AM   #46
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Perhaps my favorite entertainer. This world lost a great human. Perhaps something is bringing him the joy he brought to millions.

Huston55, you are correct. I somehow hope this loss encourages more action toward better treatments. There's much more to acomplish. One change I have seen is more willingness to talk about these diseases. We've lost too many special family members to mental illness. I know many others have too.


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I think the ubiquity of mental illness in the US (1 in 4 adults), and elsewhere, is simply not known by most folks. Truth be told, almost all of us likely have a close friend or family member that suffers from mental illness. I know that's the case for me.


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Old 08-13-2014, 10:42 AM   #47
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In my limited exposure to some friends and family that have needed treatment for mental illness, its become clear to me that our understanding of mental illness is currently comparable to our understanding of physical illness before the discovery of bacteria.

The treatments for mental illness are inconsistently given and followed, and often ineffective when they are followed. Treatments will work for some people but not others, and there is no real understanding of why. To me it appears that we are really not much past the "poking at it with a stick" stage of problem-solving in this area.

He sought and got treatment. It just didn't work, and no one can really say why.

RIP Robin

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From the talk on tv about depression, I was surprised to learn that annually there are even more deaths from suicide than car accidents. That's pretty difficult to get my mind around.

I remember this one guy back in college who lived in the dorm next to me. He lost both his mother and sister from suicide. I remember talking to him and trying to point out the good things in the world and he have a way of flipping things around and seeing the glass as half empty. It was sad to the point of being around him would get me down.

I'm sure in weeks to come more details will come out about Robin Williams like what happened the days between when he checked himself in to rehab to when he took his life. A part of me asks, as I read that he was suffering from a very deep depression, that why wasn't he committed for care. Or perhaps he was as he wasn't seen in public for 3 weeks after he went to rehab. I'm sure in time the info will come out.

But in the meantime, it's best to focus on the joy and laughter that he brought. His body of work.
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Old 08-13-2014, 10:59 AM   #48
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In my limited exposure to some friends and family that have needed treatment for mental illness, its become clear to me that our understanding of mental illness is currently comparable to our understanding of physical illness before the discovery of bacteria.

The treatments for mental illness are inconsistently given and followed, and often ineffective when they are followed. Treatments will work for some people but not others, and there is no real understanding of why. To me it appears that we are really not much past the "poking at it with a stick" stage of problem-solving in this area.

He sought and got treatment. It just didn't work, and no one can really say why.

RIP Robin
I think a big part on the difficulty of treating mental illness is that it can't be easily measured. Things are easier to treat for example, taking a physical and seeing ones BP, glucose readings, cholesterol numbers. But that isn't the case with mental illness. Because we can't readily see mental illness as more than just feeling bad, we (society) tend to dismiss the seriousness of it.
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Old 08-13-2014, 05:57 PM   #49
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I do not know if this was an issue with Robin Williams or not...

I saw someone talking about the medication that is available today... and they made a comment that they knew very gifted people like Robin that had taken medication before.... and they lost their ability to do their 'genius' stuff... IOW, it is when they are manic when their mind is working and able to come up with their stuff...

Sure, the pills takes away their depression, but also their genius... So, they just decided not to take the medication...
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Old 08-13-2014, 06:29 PM   #50
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...
The treatments for mental illness are inconsistently given and followed, and often ineffective when they are followed. Treatments will work for some people but not others, and there is no real understanding of why...

He sought and got treatment. It just didn't work, and no one can really say why.

RIP Robin
Maybe the treatment Robin Williams received did work for 20-30 years.
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Old 08-13-2014, 10:24 PM   #51
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In my experience as a benefits and HR manager, I was often frustrated at the lack of help available in the health care system to diagnose and treat these illnesses. New laws are attempting to give mental health parity though. And no matter what anyone says, behind closed doors, there is a lack of education and respect regarding how individuals with these ailments will be treated after these illnesses.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:59 AM   #52
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Even several days after Robin Williams death, I still feel shocked and saddened about this. What Robin needed for healing just wasn't - and, isn't - available.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:36 AM   #53
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This is very sad. We may never know why he decided to take his own life but if it was because he felt unappreciated, the outpouring after his death proves otherwise. Unfortunately, after he is gone.
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Old 08-14-2014, 01:46 PM   #54
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His wife has now revealed that he had early symptoms of Parkinson's disease. We already know that he was struggling to keep up with alimony bills, had difficulty selling a McMansion, and was doing work that wasn't his first choice in order to improve cash flow. Plenty of reasons why a person who already suffered from depression might feel backed into a corner and might view his own exit as a viable choice.
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Old 08-14-2014, 02:05 PM   #55
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I read somewhere that if you take your worst day, and multiply it by 1000, you'll understand depression.
Not to be morbid, but I've heard suicidal depression described as being "when your mind beats you to death with your thoughts."

Truly sad.
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Old 08-14-2014, 02:07 PM   #56
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Cocaine is God's way of saying you have too much money! -Robin Williams RIP
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:46 PM   #57
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Cocaine is God's way of saying you have too much money! -Robin Williams RIP

I think that's the best way to remember him. Keep his jokes alive.


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Old 08-14-2014, 07:11 PM   #58
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I agree. In my movie watching, I found myself drawn to his ability to show us many of the painful moments of our lives. What Dreams May Come is one if the strangest and most compelling works I have ever seen. The view of suicide in that movie is very dark, and not one with which I agree.

My DH got to see him live at the Punch Line in SF, once expected and once impromptu, while a student at SF State. Our first "date" was his disastrous movie, "Popeye". I put "date" in parentheses because the venue didn't matter...we had been infatuated for 3 years. I felt the disappointment of the cancellation of his show. I remember worrying about him then.

Our world has lost a voice of humanity and sanity in an insane world. We are all better for his existence. It's too bad that he didn't know just how loved he was.








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Old 08-14-2014, 09:14 PM   #59
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I understand he had a Parkinson's diagnosis. Given that, all his other medical issues and depression his suicide is understandable. There are times when a person says to themselves enough is enough. He will be missed, I wish he knew how much, I just wish he hadn't felt that he had to take his life in that way.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:36 PM   #60
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I understand he had a Parkinson's diagnosis. Given that, all his other medical issues and depression his suicide is understandable. There are times when a person says to themselves enough is enough. He will be missed, I wish he knew how much, I just wish he hadn't felt that he had to take his life in that way.
I would not be surprised if his family gives more details of the past few month's on Robin Wiliams' life in the months ahead. But they must still be processing and grieving their loss.

One would have never known that he had early Parkinson's on his recent tv show "The Crazy Ones" he still seemed as energetic and joking around as ever.
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