What Can Whitney Houston’s Death Teach Us?

February 13, 2012

Another tragic loss. She was not the first, she will not be the last. Until we, as a society, begin educating ourselves and addressing personality disorders, more people will follow this tragic downward spiral.

A lot of people will attribute her death to drugs and people who introduced her to that lifestyle (aka Bobby Brown). But almost no one will ask if Houston suffered from personality disorders.

The first thing addiction specialists like Dr. Drew look for is an accompanying personality disorder. Addiction and PDs almost always go hand in hand, especially when there is a family history of abuse and disorders.

The signs were all there- the bad choice in men, the erratic behavior and the constant need for attention (positive or negative). These are the telltale signs of someone who has struggled with lifelong issues.

The problem is we associate this kind of crazy behavior with being a diva, a rock n roll lifestyle. We go so far as idolizing these people. But people adopt a diva lifestyle for a reason, they are filling a void that can’t be filled.

Contrary to what Mina Jade might lead you to believe, borderlines do not always look sickly and weak. Sometimes, they look like Whitney Houston. They can be the most beautiful and talented people we know. People with PDs include some of the most celebrated people in history. But many of these celebrated people met tragic deaths. This meteoric rise and fall is also a telltale sign of PDs.

Whitney Houston was not a victim of success. The same condition that drove her to succeed, also drove her to bottomless depths. Fame does not kill people. However, PDs do kill people.

People with self-destructive tendencies tend to seek fame as a quick fix. My borderline ex is currently on a quest for fame. She is fooling herself into thinking fame will compensate for her tragic past. Whitney thought the same thing. So did Michael Jackson. So did Elvis. So did Marilyn. So did Amy Winehouse. These people were tragic personalities who soared to the heights of the sun with wings made of wax and feathers. They were bound to crash.

At the height of her career, Whitney was unstoppable. But the life of a borderline is filled with dramatic lows as well as dramatic highs. When they are on top, they seem like beacons of light. We bask in that light. But fame and success is fleeting even for someone as talented as Whitney Houston.

What we saw in recent years, was a person who could not cope with life outside the spotlight. Nobody is equipped to handle the fall from grace, least of all someone who was born too sensitive for the cruel realities of life. Drugs and bad boys were merely a way to cope with the crushing blow suffered by attention-seekers who do not get the attention they so desperately need.

Whitney never got the help she needed. Nobody staged an intervention to say enough is enough. Nobody said what needed to be said. And now it is too late. I hope the family of my borderline ex is reading this. They should take a long look at Whitney Houston’s tragic fall, because a day will come when my borderline ex will follow the same path.

When borderlines are young and beautiful, they enjoy the privileges that come with being young and beautiful. But that advantage will fade quickly with time. And when it does, they will no longer be the rising star you see before you. Their life will take a sharp turn and it will not be pretty.

Suicide rates among borderlines are much higher than the rest of the population. Life expectancies are dramatically shorter. Substance abuse is rampant amongst borderlines. Risky behavior and bad choices consistently put them at risk.

If their life was tragic before, you can expect it will be even more tragic towards the end.

Therefore, it behooves families to get their loved one help before things start going south. Because, once that domino effect starts, it is almost impossible to stop. The time to wake up is now. Let the death of Whitney Houston be a reminder of what can happen when families ignore a borderline’s problem.

9 Responses to “What Can Whitney Houston’s Death Teach Us?”

  1. savorydish said

    Families of borderlines often stay in denial because they are avoiding shame. A borderline is a product of an abusive environment. To admit their loved one has a problem is to admit that family conditions were less than ideal.

    They would have to admit that someone in the family was responsible for abusing the borderline in question. This is too much for most people to face. So they look the other way. But there is no greater shame than knowing you did nothing when you could have done something.

  2. IMHO, given neither one of us are qualified to diagnose, you pose an interesting question; however, I think she may have had some demons, but I don’t think they ran as deep as BPD, rather I think she was the victim of a narcissist. That does not negate the addiction issues that plagued them both – but here’s my take… http://www.narcraiders.blogspot.com/2012/02/why-its-happy-valentines-day.html BUT your question is still within the realm of possibility. 😉

    • savorydish said

      People like Whitney fall for narcissists for a reason. They are addicted to bad boys. There’s a reason why they are running back into the arms of a guy who will beat the crap out of her and fill her full of drugs. They have done it their whole life. People who fall to the depths that she did, don’t just have some demons. They have a lot of demons. They are just really really good at covering them up with glamor and glitz.

      Trust me, I have intimate knowledge of women like Whitney Houston. My qualifications comes with life experience and self-education. So while it is justified to place blame on Bobby Brown, it is not accurate to say that this is where the investigation stops. You don’t have to be qualified to figure that out, you just have to be willing to look deeper.

  3. I wasn’t that type and ended up in the bowels of hell…which is why I say one size does not fit all…not saying she’s an angel, not by a longshot…but the lure of a narcissist is very hypnotic…in fact I’d never date a dude that did drugs or even had a history with them…worked a forum with traffic of four million a month…NPD Victims, worldwide but given stats are six million psycopaths in America alone with a reach of sixty million direct victims, ninety million if we factor in kids…not out of the realm of possibility we’re dealing with NPD…unfortunately, lack of awareness, causes many to miss the mark. Narcissism isn’t vanity, it’s a cluster b right up there with BPD…actually the traits of both overlap…actually we probably could both be right, except it’s hard to tell because while BPD’s and NPD’s frequently court…some think the BPD could eat the NPD for breakfast while others believe vice versa. What I know is that hole and smoking pot and getting high from time to time, or enjoying a lil of the rich mans candy is one thing but I do think Bobby drove her to the brink with his BS and she was already caught up in the web…

    • savorydish said

      I’m not disputing what you’re saying. I’m just uncomfortable portraying WH as the damsel in distress. There were plenty of women who did not fall prey to BB’s hypnotic gaze. There are many women who think he’s a slimeball. We need to ask why Whitney fell for it. The fact is BPs often fall for NPs. As you said, they are all part of the same cluster. Birds of a feather flock together. This is not about laying blame. It’s about people taking responsibility for their own well-being.

  4. Jeez, don’t even know what I was trying to write, excuse me I have a bit of a cognitive challenge…but what I was trying to say is I’m not negating she was a force to contend with herself, and yes, I suspect she dabbled prior to Bobby…BUT the extent of her use, I believe was due to his driving her to the brink…she was self medicating…and she was caught up…PTSD which is common with abuse, and he certainly did act out…c’mon dude urinating in a cop car, he might be ASPD with that right there alone that takes a set…he was out of control but it’s hard to tell if it’s due to drug use or other factors…what we do know…he’s got a few trophy babies in his wake he was just bad news…sometimes ‘good girls’ think they can ‘fix’ a bad boy, I think she saw the ‘good in him’ and had no idea what she was up against…many victims erroneously think these dudes are harmless but they’re dangerous…

    • savorydish said

      It is clear now that WH had a self-destructive steak. She was attracted to BB because he was a bad boy. Not because she saw good in him. These problems go back to early childhood. Meeting BB was not the catalyst, it was just another piece of the puzzle. WH was not a victim. She was a willing participant.

      • savorydish said

        Watch Martin Scorcese’s “Casino”. This film captures the essence of the BP’s attraction to NP’s. These women are not hypnotized. They are following their self-destructive instincts. From early childhood, these women are programmed to seek out the biggest asshole in the room. Most likely because daddy was a raging asshole. WH was beautiful and talented. She had the pick of the litter. She chose BB for a reason and it wasn’t because he was hypnotic. It was because he was doling out the abusive behavior she grew up with. These people were screwed up from their earliest years. It only became more apparent after they were in the public eye.

  5. Stop Blaming the Parents said

    Although this post is 2 years old I am compelled to respond to the first post of Savory Dish because there is too much wrong information out there. Borderlines are NOT always a product of an abusive upbringing. In fact new research shows that up to 50 percent come from loving homes. Borderline Personality Disorder is genetic and there are many things that contribute to its development in an individual. I am the parent of an adult child who is Borderline and I would give my eye teeth … No, I would have every tooth in my mouth pulled out without freezing if I could get my son into therapy. The problem is, if the individual with the disorder is in denial, family members have no control over getting them into therapy, and in fact, therapy will not help unless the person admits they have a problem. Most family members are heartbroken and at their wits end.

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