The Celebrity Therapist

The consequence for her behavior against a rehab worker this past December yields no formal charges.

Addiction seems to be the “buzz” word lately, with headlines, twitter, facebook and blogs all writing about the “trending” condition. This attention can be either good or bad for the recovery community. We can hope that this attention will bring awareness and end the stigma surrounding addiction. We can also be fearful that the world will become less interested in treatment plans, warning signs and how much of an impact addiction has on our society. Today’s headlines were no different, the trending topic of Lindsay Lohan is back on the top of google searches regarding her behavior when she was in treatment and the final ruling on her consequences.

Lohan is no stranger to being in the news and gossip magazines. Stories today explain her pending court case for an allegedly stolen necklace, to her supporting her supposed ex-girlfriend to her plans to move to New York City. The headline that caught my attention was in regards to the accusations made by a treatment facility employee, who alleges that Lohan attacked her physically. The incident occurred on December 1, 2010 at the Betty Ford Clinic. The consensus believed that Lohan would be charged with misdemeanor battery. However the decision was that prosecutors wouldn’t pursue any charges against Lohan for that incident. The facts surrounding the case against her for theft of a necklace are still pending. What example is Lohan showing society about inappropriate behavior and the legal consequences that could ensue?

My hope is that those that idolize her don’t emulate her behavior. Although Lohan is getting away with criminal behavior in this instance, which does not mean that other’s who follow in her footsteps would achieve a similar result. The fact remains that non-celebrity addicts and recovering addicts should realize that it is not unusual for those with greater financial means to have surprising results in regards to legal charges.  The safest bet is to err on the side of caution. Lindsay Lohan may have been given a free pass in this instance, but if you were to mimic her behavior, I doubt your result would end up the same.

Simply put, I am fearful for those younger individuals that idolize Lindsay Lohan. My fear is that they will mimic identical behavior and believe that it is acceptable because they read in the headlines or saw a trending topic that showed them an example of bad behavior resulting with no consequences. It will be interesting to see what occurs with the charges of theft.

Sherry Gaba, LCSW, is a Life and Recovery Coach on Celebrity Rehab on VH1 and author of “The Law of Sobriety” which uses the law of attraction to recovery from any addictions.  Sherry can be reached at for coaching packages, therapy, teleseminars, workshops, or speaking engagements.

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