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josh marks -dead

former master chef contestant josh dead from gunshot wound to head :(

i have a friend that has a mother with bipolar disorder i always wondered wh she never wanted me to spend the night at her house...finally she said "I never know what I'll be opening the door on at your house I can just relax for at least a day cook with you and laugh and not worryabout IT comng into ruin everything"

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  1. What sad news. I liked him. May he rest in peace.

    1. i was very sad to read this news this morning. to me, the one of the saddest things about this is how woefully the mental health system in our country abandons those in need. tragically, josh had opened up about his mental health struggles to the make a sound project (a non-profit suicide awareness and prevention group), making outreach media with them to try and offer support to others in need and to prevent exactly this kind of tragedy. but in a bitterly ironic twist, after his arrest in july, the make a sound project cut ties with mr. marks.

      josh seemed like a very gifted, gentle man; i am deeply saddened that his mental illness took his life so young. i am quite certain the world would have been a brighter place had we had the opportunity to see much more from such a talented young star. my thoughts are with his family and loved ones. RIP.

        1. A sad and terrible irony that this happened during Mental Illness Awareness Week as well.

          Manic-depression runs in my family so I am aware of the terrible toll that depression can take, in its many forms. I am so sad for Josh and his family right now.

            1. It's sad also to note that, despite how far we may have come in talking about Christine's blindness as a manageable disability, there was no way to bring Josh's disability into his story. Mental illness is, at root, just as physical a disability as blindness, yet it is treated as something weak and shameful in those who suffer from it. And even if it can be less of a barrier in one's day to day life than blindness, the long term damage can be, as in Josh's case, devastating.

              3 Replies
                1. re: ennuisans

                  severe illnesses like bipolar and schizophrenia are, in my opinion, every bit as big a hurdle (and daily challenge) as blindness, deafness, or other more easily recognized and widely understood challenges are. right on for calling josh's struggles for what they are; a true and legitimate disability right on par with christine's. the difficulties are different, but every bit as real.

                  1. re: chartreauxx

                    Yes, nicely said. Jane Pauley has a great quote: "My goal is to see that mental illness is treated like cancer." If only it were accepted and understood that mental illness isn't some spiritual or moral failure, but something that is genetically or chemically or otherwise *physically* based. Perhaps then someone's mental illness and how they handle it can be just as empowering in a reality show as a physical disability.

                2. Mental health parity is one of the things that we desperately need to legislate. I read that Josh was discharged when his insurance ran out, not when he was stabilized. To make matters worse, they changed his diagnosis on him the same day he was prematurely discharged. That probably messed with his self identity as much as the original diagnosis of mental illness, with all the stigma that carries, did.
                  Who knows if he ever got meds for schizophrenia or not. They were probably giving him meds for bipolar illness, if for anything. One med doesn't treat both illnesses and both require some time to become clinically effective/therapeutic. We take different meds for a sore throat than we do for a sprained ankle... Psychiatric meds aren't like aspirin, take one and symptoms disappear in a matter of minutes. Nor are they antibiotics, you can go off them once you're cured - mental illness is like diabetes, a lifelong condition that, for most people, can be stabilized if treated appropriately, but not cured.
                  Tragically most states have radically reduced psychiatric beds, relying instead on a community mental health treatment system that was supposed to replace those beds but which never became a reality. Patients' rights, sadly ignored and/or abused for all that time, gained strength from reformers and psychiatric patients themselves. They came of age along with civil rights. Among those rights is the right to refuse treatment. In the dark old days, patients would be medicated into stupors to make them easier to "handle." Now the mentally ill are being allowed to "rot with their rights on." Those people are the ones you see living on the streets yelling at their voices.
                  Sorry for the long post. I worked at a psychiatric hospital for years and watched some of these changes come about. Some were good, but the patients who got the best treatment were often those who were ordered into our hospital by the criminal courts. They weren't allowed to discharge themselves when still ill but no longer "an imminent threat of danger to themselves or others," the legal requirement for keeping a person in a psychiatric facility against his/her will. That's why the jails of this country have become the largest, and far more expensive, mental health treatment facilities we now have.
                  For Josh, as for many others, these changes ended in a tragedy that needn't have occurred.