Relating to Reality TV

Catherine Zeta Jones admits to the public she’s battling bipolar disorder, so it’s okay for the public to be a little more honest about their own mental health issues.  Now Toni Braxton is coming out with a reality TV show (because who isn’t coming out with a reality TV show?) on the WE channel to display to the world “THIS IS WHAT LUPUS LOOKS LIKE”.  Maybe now people will understand what it’s like? Whatever!

As if being a D-list celebrity with no worries about having a real job or wracking your head over where to afford the tests you need to understand health, rights, and benefits, is a realistic portrayal of what having lupus is all about?  I’m already fed-up, and hope the rest of you are, with Reality TV, but exploiting whatever minimal survival stories paired along side with dying fame is shameful.  Having a TV crew, makeup artist, and whatever else entourage may follow you and your ridiculous fame-seeking leaching family members and telling people it’s hard to be you because you’re tired doesn’t extract empathy from people in the real world.  Should it really take the voice of a celebrity to raise Lupus Awareness?  Not everyone with the Wolf Disease jumps on the diseased marathon band wagon or cares to attend conferences about “hope” and “butterfly survivors” and “spoonies.”  Certainly not me.  Some glamorize the disease as if it’s a culture in the making.  Same with the Breast Cancer Awareness, which has become more of a marketing opportunity, than actual knowledge and understanding of cancer.  Seriously, what truths have you learned about Pink Ribbons other than “it happens a lot” and “it’s a real problem”?

Although my feathers were ruffled upon hearing of this show, this scolding one is not truly toward the Braxton family.  My own frustration with my health is the reason over the upset of this edited view of chronic illness.  It’s a whole lot more than being exhausted.  It’s so difficult to try to be understood when you barely understand yourself.  It’s a lot uglier than what the public will perceive while these ladies parade their drama in couture apparel.  Many will think they relate to it, but they won’t.    Misinformation about any illness shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who isn’t directly experiencing yourself of someone you love.  Exploiting one case to the public will not accomplish much except limited awareness of the existence of this growing epidemic.

I don’t want to be a hater.  If people want to expose their life on day time TV, they have the right to do it, but please don’t bother with the catch phrase: “This is what lupus looks like.” Reality TV…is not real.

Maybe I should just keep my opinions to myself and be grateful that someone is willing to talk about it, even if in a comedic warped Hollywood script? Life should still be fabulous even if you feel like poop all the time, right? Right? (I ask, cause I honestly don’t know.)

Luckily, I don’t have the WE channel and I don’t have to bother with it.  I’m learning to deal with my health nearly on my own.  As you see, it causes a lot of emotional upset.  It requires a lot of humbling toward myself, toward our finicky nature and it’s complexities, toward the unsuspecting.  It feels more like a magical illusion than a balancing act, but it’ll be a wonderful success when I finally accept this new evolving lifestyle without getting so pissed about how other people deal with it.

Hearing about this new show amidst a barrage of addiction to celebrity lives caught me on a bad day and incited a rant.  I hope the next time I come to this blog is on a good day, one where I’m at a point of acceptance.  For now, I’m glad I had a reason to bitch about something else rather than my own problem. Ha.

Here’s a handful of positives vibe to make up for the venting comin at ya:  Relax, relate, release!

For anyone else suffering a chronic “something”, how do you find your balance? Or how are you finding it? Do you ever figure it out? Would love to hear someone else’s take on this.


Filed under Loopy Lupus, Under the Weather

3 responses to “Relating to Reality TV

  1. Sara

    I am fortunate and blessed to be extremely healthy and cannot even begin to identify with your struggles and pain. The only thing that makes me feel as pissy as you is when women say they have abusive husbands when they really don’t. I know one woman who rants and raves about her abusive, crazy, mean ex-husband and when I ask what she means. Oh – he would yell. I am not trying to excuse any sort of mental abuse in a marriage, but to call that man abusive is wrong. I was married to a person who was truly abusive. I want to tell people – quit your bitching. When you have had broken bones and black eyes – that’s an abusive husband. Unless that happens – just say you fought too much. Ok – that was my rant.

    • You’re a strong momma, I’ll give you that. I don’t expect to be empathized with just as I don’t pretend to understand other people’s struggles as well. We can only listen and try to be there, maybe learn from each other.

  2. Pingback: Celebrity meets Reality | Multum in Parvo

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