Following Prince’s death, actress Jamie Lee Curtis opened up about her past addiction to opiates in an essay called “Kill the Pain” for Huffington Post.
Relating to the late musician as investigators are still looking into a possible overdose on painkillers, Curtis, 57, shared her personal experiences with trying to numb her emotional and physical pain with opiates.
As it’s also Mental Health Month, the Scream Queens star’s essay is a good piece to start a conversation as she writes openly about her 17 year recovery from her own addiction.
“I too, waited anxiously for a prescription to be filled for the opiate,” Curtis wrote in Kill the Pain, “I too, took too many at once. I too, sought to kill emotional and physical pain with painkillers. Kill it. Make it stop.”
Emotional pain is real and it’s a fact that mental illness indirectly affects all Canadians at some time through a family member, friend or colleague, according to the Canadian Mental Health Association.
With symptoms ranging from mild to severe, The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) reports that in any given year, 1 in 5 Canadians experience a mental health or addiction problem.
Owning her past addiction, Curtis has given folks an access point to talk about addiction and mental health. Having these conversations openly can help to move away from stigmas.
Curtis referenced bits of popular culture she could relate to: “The symbolism of James Taylor’s “Fire and Rain,” an anthem of addiction, seems more poignant as now it is a purple rain, another loss to drug addiction.”
The Freak Friday actress mourns the loss of the music legend and encourages folks to avoid enabling loved ones who are ill. Though there’s not yet an official cause of death, The New York Times is providing reports that strongly suggests that the ‘When Doves Cry’ singer was abusing painkillers.
So, we’ll applaud Curtis and her efforts for opening up such an important discussion.
Image credit: Instagram/Tumblr/ohscreamqueens