Super Star George Michael’s passing was such a shock to the pop culture world. His creative talent and force left indelibly sealed by MTV as his videos were at the height when video iconography reigned in the late 80’s and 90’s .
What was shared on the video screen was the projection of firm confidence and smoldering sex appeal. But what was underneath, inside his mind was a battle with depression for over 2 decades.
The death of his first love, Anselmo Feleppa and later his mother, Lesley, plunged him into a deep depression. He told the Independent, “I struggled with huge depression after my mother died. Losing your mother and your lover in the space of three years is a tough one.”
Feleppa died in 1993 and Michael coped with the death by smoking as many as 23 marijuana joints in a day and throwing himself in this music, said the Mirror.
He also turned to Prozac as he was devastated when his mother died in 1997.
Recently it’s been brought to light that the pop star battled a “spiraling” heroin addiction, according to a UK media outlet.
An unnamed source has told The Telegraph newspaper that the pop legend had been battling addiction over the past year and had been treated in a hospital for an overdose.
My writing here is strictly a review of others accounts and in no way makes any judgement regarding Michael. It’s a gleaning from his own words, reports and evidences of his life.
Grief, emotional pain, deep betrayal; when they happen to us, our mind tries to find a way to deal with it, rationalize it. To do this the mind will send emotions to a body part/organ which then develops into a somatization or possibly a dis-ease. We will also develop a coping mechanism, mostly selected from learned modeling and emotional imprinting from our family and those who raised and influenced us.
Many times, clients will say they have dealt with the grief. That they have been to therapy and understand it better. They have pushed it away, out of site out of mind, they don’t think about it. They will say, “I don’t need any help with that, I will figure it out on my own.”
OR, they will say they don’t want to forget because it’s a reminder of what happened and how they will never ever let it happen again. Only, it happens again, and again and again. Because it’s an emotional coping pattern they have reinforced in their lives that the unconscious feels will make them safe. Right or Wrong, Good or Bad, that program has been installed and they will repeat it.
But understanding it better, pushing it away, not thinking about it, figuring it out on our own, or keeping it as a reminder does nothing to change it or transform it.
With my clients I take the past, their old memories, release the troubling memory in a loving safe way, and replace it with what they do want in their lives.
Michael slid into depression as his coping skill after his lover died and into even deeper depression when his mother died later. It snowballed.
To cover his emotional pain he dealt with it with cannabis, Prozac, work and possibly later with heroine.
People don’t know how to handle their pain is the bottom line. They are an “avoidaholic” looking for anything: food, sex, alcohol, drugs, substance abuse, work, exercise, meditation, TV, OCD, and any other hyper control mechanisms that can be used to hide behind as it’s painful to feel the emotions and deal with them.
The standard traditional methods used don’t actually transform the pain, mostly because most practitioners don’t think it can be transformed. Or the client has been told it’s not safe to be transformed; best do it in little increments.
And then there are the economic forces as it’s more financially conducive for the practitioner to keep the client in that state of mind and trapped by continually examining, revisiting and further developing the story of the trauma, never ending.
With my clients, I step into their life, figure out what they are doing to continually recreate this belief and sadness. Then I help them on a continuing basis to ferret out the emotional traumas and pain, the grief, and loss of control and replace it with self-empowerment and the life they desire.
In a hypothetical reality, if Michael or a client similar to his situation had come to me after a lover’s death, we would have released the pain of the grief and kept the love that was there. He would then been able to move forward in life fueled by that love. He would have empowering coping skills to deal with any emotions or unexpected life events that would have arisen.
Then possibly the pain of his mother’s death would have been less and we would have continued again to go inside and let go of the grief and pain of the memory and circumstances around her death from cancer. He would have kept her love and honor, dropping the pain, using that to propel him in his life from there on out.
According to reports Michael led an amazing and extraordinary life of humility, service and love to those around him and the issues he felt important. From my experience if I had encountered a client such as him early on in their life path, I would like to think their contribution would been even greater.
A life free from guilt and grief. A newly empowered life built on their existing capacity and with the addition of new tools learned with me, allowing them to move to even a higher plane of love and fulfillment.
Randolph is a Mind Performance and Life Coach successfully helping his clients prosper in their careers, relationships, health and wellness. He also works through emotional traumas, addictions and unwanted behaviors to help them find the life they truly desire. He can be contacted via http://www.hit-reset.com