No Laughing Matter: a Tribute to Robin Williams

Robin Williams fans mourn the loss of one of the greatest comedians of history today.  In this world of wars, and anguish, Robin Williams made us laugh.  

For Robin Williams was a most gifted comedian but Robin Williams was also Bipolar. 

His Bipolar disease fed his genius. It also killed him.

His Bipolar disease gave him the ability to wildly free associate right to the heart of our funny bones.  His performances were floridly manic but his alcoholism was depressed.  

In truth of fact, Bipolar disease often does beget genius but far more often Bipolar Disease is the cause of suicide.  The most deadly of all mental illnesses, we Bipolars see, and at times, enjoy the mania but far too often are caught in the black hole of depression.

And while fans may mourn Robin Williams, we who are Bipolar cry tears of anguish not just for one of our heroes, but also for a disease that could kill us.  

Like most Bipolars suicidal thoughts and wishes are not foreign to me, just as they are not alien to many mentally ill people.  But more Bipolars die from their mental illness than any of the other mental illnesses

Fans loved Robin Williams and ignored the Bipolar aspect.  Mental illness is still stigmatized and talked about in hushed tones.   

We who are depressed are told to “snap out of it”, “look on the bright side,” engage in “positive thinking” as if we have total control over our psyches.  If anyone could look at the funny side, it was Robin Williams and yet Bipolar depression sent him to an early grave.

Pay tribute to Robin Williams by accepting Bipolar Disorder and Major Depression and, instead of stigmatizing mental illness, treat the afflicted with acceptance and empathy.  

 May Robin Williams rest in peace at long last!!

30 responses

  1. I share with you that the Fanatic is back in the hospital. Please pray for her. Thanks for the tribute


    August 12, 2014 at 10:37 AM

    • Thank you for sharing that with me. Will pray. Have added her to my prayer list. Glad you liked the tribute.

      On Tue, Aug 12, 2014 at 10:37 AM, MOONSIDE wrote:



      August 12, 2014 at 10:58 AM

  2. Beautiful tribute..thank you for sharing this.


    August 12, 2014 at 10:41 AM

  3. Some great points but I want to point out that Bipolar is a disorder, not a disease. It’s not catching.


    August 12, 2014 at 7:34 PM

    • Yes, you are right. It is called a “disorder” but in this context, since it proved fatal, I used license to call it a “disease”. As one who is Bipolar, I find the effects so devastating that the word “disorder” seems to make light of the reality, although in truth it is a mood disoder. It is actually an Axis 1 Major Mental Illness in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.


      August 13, 2014 at 9:22 AM

  4. Yesterday was a tough day, and today’s not much better, Ellen.
    Thanks for sharing your experienced point of view.
    It’s the only one I’ve read that makes sense.


    August 12, 2014 at 8:10 PM

    • Well, thank you so much, Uncle Tree!! That is a very welcome comment because I spoke from the heart without restraint and never know how the result will be received. Yes, these are very sad days. Tragic. I do hope that you personally are okay though.

      On Tue, Aug 12, 2014 at 8:10 PM, MOONSIDE wrote:


      Liked by 1 person

      August 12, 2014 at 8:15 PM

      • I’m okay. Tears are healthy, so I give ’em their due.


        August 12, 2014 at 8:26 PM

      • Yes, tears are healthy and lots of tears today. I do hope you soon feel better!

        On Tue, Aug 12, 2014 at 8:26 PM, MOONSIDE wrote:



        August 12, 2014 at 8:30 PM

      • I had to share this on Facebook.


        August 12, 2014 at 8:28 PM

      • Thank you lots for posting it– I am not on FB and don’t know anything about it.


        August 12, 2014 at 10:21 PM

  5. Thank you, Ellen. Well put.


    August 13, 2014 at 1:26 AM

  6. I remember Mork and Mindy and the famous Nano/Nano as if it was just yesterday.
    And I remember that I loved “world according to Garp” …
    Snap out of it? I do not think i’m bipolar, and it doesn’t work like that for me. Can take weeks in worst case scenarios of a recent past. It’s bad when you wake up with that feeling. Close encounters do help, and sometimes get me out of it. The flow is also a great reliever.


    August 13, 2014 at 2:54 AM

    • Yes, the memories abound. I will never forget Mork crying and saying, “My eyes are leaking”. And all the other great laughs and tears and drama. Yes, flow and close encounters are great relievers but when one is deeply depressed one cannot feel relief. Awe is gone and all is dark and flat.
      P.S. Thanks for visiting and all the likes, take care, Ellen


      August 13, 2014 at 9:27 AM

      • Deeply depressed, and flow doesn’t come at all — indeed no awe, until that moment that mind slings out of circular thinking …


        August 13, 2014 at 10:23 AM

      • Cycles, cycles, cycles. How does the enmeshed mind break free? Chemistry… prayer… meditation… karma… heart stopping awe…

        On Wed, Aug 13, 2014 at 10:23 AM, MOONSIDE wrote:



        August 13, 2014 at 1:08 PM

  7. Loved the tribute although I recognize that it is in framed in sadness.

    It truly is a tragedy and as you know from my other comments and my blog post on this same subject my only hope is that through it, somehow, people will reconsider their understanding of mental health and mental illness.

    Thank you so much for sharing.
    Kind Regards and God bless you.



    August 13, 2014 at 4:05 AM

    • Thank you, Kevin, for your support. And thank you for your beautiful tribute. We are all so sad at the devastating effects mental illness can have.
      God bless you as well, take care, Ellen


      August 13, 2014 at 9:24 AM

  8. Dearest Ellen,

    Beautiful tribute. Without even reading to confirm, I knew Robin was Bipolar, recognising the characteristics of it.

    The overwhelming joyous highs of energy and enthusiasm are repaid with the depth of despair.

    RIP Robin, he gave millions happines, alas he struggled to find it within himself.

    Lots of love xxx


    August 13, 2014 at 9:26 AM

    • Thank you, Lauren!! I know you are no stranger to depression either from some of your posts. Robin Williams did not make it for whatever reasons and that is a sorrow for the world who loved him. Hope you are doing well. And Alfonso, too. Love, Ellen xx


      August 13, 2014 at 1:17 PM

  9. A beautiful tribute to a beautiful man. I mourn his loss as you do and fear for my own life as you do, and as he must have feared for his, for the same reasons – Bipolar takes no hostages – it only takes our lives…. even to this extreme. I’m glad we’re both survivors. It’s good to have you here. Some of us understand and don’t judge him, but only empathize…..
    Thank you Ellen,


    August 13, 2014 at 1:22 PM

    • I am so glad to have met you, Steve. Thank you so much for your beautiful comment. Stay even, Ellen

      On Wed, Aug 13, 2014 at 1:22 PM, MOONSIDE wrote:



      August 13, 2014 at 1:33 PM

  10. He was a gift and now he is gone. The world was a better place when he was in it.


    August 15, 2014 at 1:43 PM

  11. Beautiful post. I also know the rabbit hole of bipolar very well, and wrote a tribute to Robin. I think all of us with this condition were deeply affected by his death. Peace & Love Sister, Lorlinda


    August 21, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    • Thank you for visiting and for the compliment. Glad to have met you– am now following you, Blessings, Ellen


      August 21, 2014 at 9:33 AM

  12. Ellen, this is a lovely tribute. Amen to acceptance and empathy.

    Blessings ~ Wendy ❀


    September 7, 2014 at 11:12 PM

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