Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together


Bieber Bad Boy Behavior: Why Do Celebrities Act Out?

posted by Linda Mintle

He sang about being your boyfriend, but what girl wants a guy who pees in a janitor’s bucket in a restaurant?  Most “girlfriends” would run for the hills, thinking this guy has issues. And there was more, he spritzed a picture of former President Clinton and called him an expletive. Who knew the Canadian harbored such feelings towards an American President? But because Bieber is a celebrity, most girls would overlook this moment of rebellion, and be his girlfriend anyway. If he was just the guy down the block, he would be gross and disgusting. Someone might even refer him for therapy!

Somehow, when gross and inappropriate behavior comes from a celebrity, we chuckle and think it is just a part of celebrity behavior-expected, minimized, and no one talks about what it really might mean.

Call me a mom, but I was so disappointed with the Biebs. He’s got talent, charisma on stage, so why does he have to sink to such a low level? Yes, he apologized after the video and word got out.

So why do celebrities act out?

Maybe it is the lifestyle –no privacy, constant adulation, and a team of people who keep pushing you for more because their livelihood depends on it. Once your famous, you are trapped. No going back to a private life. Time to rebel, and that rebellion seems to worsen with time. The isolation has to change their thinking, making them more paranoid, more self-centered and more out of touch with every day norms. Think about it. If you can jet to an island and spend 10,000 on a quick date, you aren’t moving in the circles of ordinary people. Eventually, you lose touch, can’t relate and unfortunately, the people around you stop questioning your aberrant behavior. They need you to make money, not question your mental health.

And the teenage brain isn’t fully developed. It doesn’t do well with impulsivity and judgment. And with no one telling you to “knock it off,” “that was stupid” or “I hope you feel embarrassed,” the normal controls are gone. Teenage rebellion is full throttle in the public eye. Few of these people have a genuine faith to ground and help them. Whatever they want, they can afford. No one says NO. No one says, you acted like a jerk! When they get caught, they apologize.

Dr. Drew thinks celebrity bad behavior is rooted in mental illness. According to him, celebrities already have narcissistic traits that then get reinforced with their success and fame. The press makes it all look so normal, rather than taking them to task. Maybe he is right. He has certainly worked with a number of them.

Whatever the reason, I wish every talented kid like Bieber would surround himself with people who would ground him, who don’t have money as their main issue and would put his mental health front and center. And maybe the media could stop celebrating their acting out–now that would be a miracle, but hey, I can always hope.



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