Charlie Sheen: Typical Addict|
March 8, 2011
I know Charlie Sheen. I've never met him, and I don't wish to. But I know who he
is and how he feels. He is no super-star and he is not unique. He is merely a typical
Charlie Sheen's continuing public meltdowns come as no surprise to anyone who has
ever attended an Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous meeting. His drug induced
behavior is the norm for millions who struggle daily with substance abuse. Some
give in to it, as Sheen has, and others manage, for a day at a time, to remain clean
Make no mistake, drugs and booze offer an enticing alternative to harsh reality.
When one is under the influence, reality becomes whatever you want it to be. The
capacity for self-delusion is unequaled, at least until it's time for another fix
or drink. For most substance abusers, this imagined reality must be maintained at
Science has not yet determined whether alcoholism or drug addiction is genetically
determined. No-one has figured out why one person can have just one drink while
another must continue drinking well past the drunken stage. There are, however,
certain common patterns of behavior that remain exclusive to substance abusers.
And Charlie Sheen exhibits them all.
Denial: The stock-in-trade of drunks who have not yet lost everything.
To acknowledge a problem means having to deal with it. And taking a pill or drink
instantly banishes that annoying intrusion of reality. Until the day it doesn't.
: Anyone who has seen Sheen's recent appearances on TV
should be able to recognize his
increasing disconnect from reality.
Because Sheen has mucho bucks and an entourage of enabling sycophants, it is unlikely
that he will beat his addiction. He will continue to insist his version of reality
is the correct one and will continue to willfully ignore the myriad warning signs
that are so obvious to the unimpaired.
Charlie Sheen is a pathetic drunk. The only thing that separates him from the gutter
is his money. He is not unique. He is a typical substance abuser, just like the
homeless drunks you see in the inner city. Only difference is, Charlie isn't homeless.
And despite his insistence on redefining reality to his specifications, there are
certain realities he can't change. Namely:
Alcoholism is a progressive disease. There comes a point when ever larger quantities
of drugs or booze are required to maintain the illusion of euphoria. Soon the drugs
cease to produce a high and instead result in severe depression and the inability
to reason logically. Many drunks hit their bottom when this happens. Many die. A
lucky few are forced to start the rough road to recovery.
Another reality Sheen can't change is the fact that when drunks and users are under
the influence, they don't mature normally. If a drunk started drinking at age 17,
their emotional and social maturity remain 17 years old, even if they're 40. Sheen's
show, "Two and a Half Men," is appropriately titled. Sheen is half a man - lacking
the behavioral maturity that normally comes with age.
Charlie Sheen is one of the unlucky ones, like Anna Nicole, Elvis Presley, Michael
Jackson, etc. He has the means to indulge his addiction and the money to enable
him to continue to escape the consequences of his destructive behavior. So far.
Charlie has publicly stated that being sober is boring. It appears he does not have
the will or desire to change his behavior. I doubt Charlie has the fortitude or
character to ever admit he is just a typical addict, which is the one essential
step on the road to recovery. I predict that when Charlie hits bottom, and he will,
he will not be able to bounce back.
Rasmussen just published a poll
showing that 71% have an unfavorable impression
of the “Two and a Half Men” star. But that doesn't keep Americans from eagerly watching
his life become a train wreck. Sheen's oh so public appearances titillate those
that need someone to feel better than. Sheen interprets the interest as support.
I'm embarrassed for him.
Like all of those who live their lives under the influence, the day is coming when
Charlie will hit his bottom. He will self-destruct and finally have to make
a choice that all addicts are eventually forced to make. Death or sobriety. Personally,
I think he has already decided.
Morgan is a columnist and news editor
for conservative news site
She lives in South Carolina
This article was first published by
, March 7, 2011
Article may be reprinted, with attribution
Other articles by this author