Welcome to another post on celebrities living with bipolar disorder. As I’m doing more research on bipolar, I’m finding a lot more information on famous people living with bipolar. Some celebrities are recently diagnosed while others have been living with it for several years. But, even though bipolar has been a struggle for them throughout their lives, it’s amazing how they have continued to push forward and follow their passion. Some make me proud because they use their star power to increase bipolar awareness. For example, Demi Lovato and Catherine Zeta-Jones both have talked openly about their diagnosis and what they plan on doing. They are both an advocate for bipolar awareness.
Today, we’ll be exploring Sinead O’Connor and her recent diagnosis of bipolar disorder. She was misdiagnosed for 13 years as having borderline personality disorder. She wrote on her Facebook wall – “Am celebrating having finally received an accurate diagnosis.”
Sinead O’Connor – Singer, Songwriter, Musician, and Priest
She was born on December 8th, 1966 in Glenageary in County Dublin. O’Connor is an Irish singer and songwriter who became popular in the 1980’s after debuting her album – The Lion and the Cobra. She achieved worldwide fame in the 1990’s with a new arrangement of Prince’s song “Nothing Compares 2 U”.
Over the years, O’Connor has maintained her career but has stirred up a lot of controversy making statements about organized religion, women’s rights, war, and child abuse.
Sinead O’Connor started her career in the 1980’s when she signed to Ensign Records. Around this time, she acquired an experienced manager who guided her to embark on her first major project. O’Connor provided vocals for the song “Heroine” which she co-wrote with U2’s guitarist.
Even though O’Connor and her record label had different views on certain projects she was working on, she was allowed to produce her own album. O’Connor was only 20 years old, and 7 months pregnant from a relationship with her session drummer John Reynolds. In 1987, she released her first album – The Lion and the Cobra which reached gold record status and earned a Best Female Rock Vocal Performance Grammy nomination.
O’ Connor released the single “Troy” in the UK and Ireland. She also made her first US television appearance on the Late Night Show with David Letterman.
In the 1990’s, O’Connor released her second album – I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got. It gained considerable notice and mostly positive reviews. NME rated it the second-best album of the year. O’Connor started to build her own identity by shaving her head, having angry expressions, and sometimes shapeless or unusual clothing.
Towards the end of 1990, O’Connor joined other guests for former Pink Floyd member Roger Waters‘ massive performance of The Wall in Berlin. She also contributed a cover of “You Do Something to Me” to the Cole Porter tribute/AIDS fundraising album Red Hot + Blue produced by the Red Hot Organization.
O’Connor announced she would not perform her concert if the US national anthem was played before. After receiving 4 Grammy Award nominations she withdrew her name from consideration. During the 1990’s, O’Connor was in a romance with Red Hot Chilli Peppers singer Anthony Kiedis. This relationship had many problems and didn’t last too long.
After spending 9 years traveling between London and Los Angeles, O’Connor moved back to Dublin to be closer to her son. She wanted to spend time raising him with her sister. In early 2000, her album Faith and Courage were released. This album featured contributions from Wyclef Jean of the Fugees and Dave Stewart of Eurythmics.
In 2010’s, O’Connor performed a duet with R&B singer Mary J. Blige. In 2012, the song “Lay Your Head Down” for the soundtrack of the film Albert Nobbs was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song. This song was performed by O’Connor.
In 2014, it was revealed that O’Connor is writing and recording material for her new album – I’m Not Bossy, I’m The Boss. In 2015, she announced plans to publish a memoir.
In August 2017, O’Connor posted a 12-minute video on her Facebook page. She mentioned how she was so alone after losing custody of her 13-year old son. O’Connor mentioned how she tried to attempt suicide and her doctor (psychiatrist) was keeping her alive.
“In the video, posted from the Travelodge in New Jersey where she says she is now living, the 50-year-old said she suffers from three mental illnesses. “I’m all by myself, there’s absolutely nobody in my life.” – independent.co.uk
In an interview with Dr. Phil, O’Connor opened-up about the abuse she faced at the hands of her mother. She also stated that she does have bipolar disorder after previously being told she had borderline personality disorder.
“I do not have BPD. I am bipolar. It’s taken me thirteen years of being told otherwise by Irish doctors, to finally sort it out.” – metro.co.uk
O’Connor announced two weeks ago that she’ll be changing her name to Magda Davitt. O’Connor decided to change her name to be ‘free of parental curses’. She then posted the following on September 15th, 2017 to her new Facebook page –
“Am celebrating having finally received an accurate diagnosis. Made by doctors who knew me for more than ten minutes. I do not have BPD. I am bipolar. It’s taken me thirteen years of being told otherwise by Irish doctors, to finally sort it out.”
She went on to say –
“Anti depressants are very dangerous for people who are bipolar. We use Different medication. So that’s part of why it’s taken so long to recover, from the hysterectomy and the last two years of trauma. Am now on proper meds and am staying in trauma treatment for three months. Nicest place on earth. Thanks to Dr Phillip.“
Sinead O’Connor is another example of how a misdiagnosis can happen. She was originally diagnosed with bipolar, then in an interview with Oprah Winfrey in 2004, she stated how she has PTSD not bipolar. Now you have her own confession two weeks ago how she’s finally been diagnosed correctly with bipolar. She’s celebrating and happy with the correct diagnosis because she can get the right kind of help. Dr. Phil organized a place at a treatment facility for Sinead O’Connor.
I feel for her because it’s a struggle even after the right diagnosis to live life. She’s been taking the wrong medication and wasn’t on the correct path to treatment. I hope she’ll be able to get the peace she deserves and get better. I want all of you to watch the 12-minute video posted on her Facebook page. It is posted above. It’s a way for everyone to understand her pain and get a reality check that a mental illness can pause your entire life. When I was first diagnosed, it “paused” my life and I couldn’t live life the way I wanted to. I was worried what will happen to me going forward because I just started treatment. I was worried about my bipolar getting worse and not being able to find the right treatment. This has always been a constant battle for me. Sinead O’Connor is still in this battle since she’s recently been diagnosed. I hope she can find the right treatment to control her symptoms quickly. In truth, she’s already lost 13 years of correct treatment because of her misdiagnosis…right?
feature photo credit: https://lgbticons.com/2013/10/03/sinead-oconner-sends-an-open-letter-to-miley-cyrus/