While the Michael Jackson ongoing civil action is perhaps the best known celebrity wrongful death issue, there are others that occur whenever a star dies due to a drug overdose or addiction complication. The family, the fans, and just the casual observer all want to be able to blame someone for failing to prevent the tragedy from occurring.
In the Michael Jackson civil suit the family is suing a range of different entities involved in his professional and person life for failing to address the addiction issues that led to his death. The latest lawsuit, filed by Michael Jackson’s mother Katherine Jackson, alleges that AEG Live LLC, the huge concert promotion company, did not properly check out Dr. Conrad Murray, the physician that was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Michael’s death. She further alleges that they were aware of his addiction and his illness and they failed to take any corrective action or to get him the help he needed.
In the same lawsuit Mrs. Jackson reports that the family was concerned of his use of pain medications for back issues and that they had attempted interventions but Michael denied the need for help. According to the mother Michael Jackson denied any addictions to pain medications and even reported to her that he was not using any types of medications prior to his death from a lethal combination of propofol and pain killers.
It seems that everyone wants to have a person or group to point to and to blame for an addiction. While this may be a natural response it is essential to realize that the only way that an addiction can be treated is for the addict to acknowledge that he or she has a problem and to make changes in lifestyle and behaviors to address the problem. Ultimately, regardless of your celebrity status, the decision to live a clean and sober lifestyle boils down to personal accountability and choice.
Reaching out for help may be more difficult when you are in the limelight, but it is the only way to prevent the pain and suffering for loved ones when a tragedy occurs. More stars and celebrities discussing addiction and recovery will help raise awareness in the industry and hopeful prompt managers, promoters and fans to be more supportive for stars that want to make positive lifestyle changes in their lives.
Sherry Gaba LCSW, Psychotherapist, Life, Love & Recovery Coach is featured Celebrity Rehab on VH1. Sherry is the author of “The Law of Sobriety” which uses the law of attraction to recover from any addiction. Please download your free E book “Filling The Empty Heart” and your “Are You a Love Addict Quiz?” at www.sherrygaba.com Contact Sherry for webinars, teleseminars, coaching packages and speaking engagements. Take Sherry’s quiz for a free eBook Filling the Empty Heart: 5 Keys to Transforming Love Addiction.