Artist Health, Music Business

Artist Health | Sinead O’Connor Quit with the Open Letters to Miley Cyrus, Really?

I don’t understand how Sinead O’Connor, given the spirit that her first letter was received by Miley Cyrus, expects to make any sense to Miley at this point. Sinead is in her forties, has lived her own life and reality. She thought to pass the unsolicited advice to Miley Cyrus. Miley rejected and mocked her. Okay then, keep it moving. The continuous open letters are unnecessary and makes her look like the problem even though she has some valid points she raises. Sinead, Miley is not going to give you an apology. She doesn’t get it and is not in that space to appreciate what you have to say.

Further, Miley’s experience may not mirror yours. When I listen to Miley, I honestly feel like she is very smart, her moves are deliberate and calculated and it is not exactly some very naive woman with no clue what she is doing, as many would like to think. It appears Miley has been around the entertainment block for a minute, understands the hypocrisy and contradictions prevalent both within and outside the industry and in her own way is saying “don’t tell me how to live my life, I will live it as I see fit. You may enjoy my music but you are not the author or decision maker on issues that affect me.” Basically, she is “rebelling” but to me the rebellion is really not a rebellion, per se. Her head, it appears to me, seems to be screwed on okay, although her videos and twerking may seem to suggest otherwise. There is just something about her that is hard to explain but appears like she honestly gets it but has chosen, for reasons known to her, the methods she she chosen so far to execute her craft. A method that is clearly working to get her attention with over 200million views on her You Tube videos in such short amount of space.

I think we may have opinions about how we believe persons should act or conduct themselves. But, in the final analysis, whether those opinions are solicited or not, it is our opinion and they can choose to accept or reject it. One thing we know for sure or can rest assured is that for every action, there is a reaction or some form of consequence that flows from it. Let Miley Cyrus be, already, really. Plus, even if she was going to listen, Sinead sounds angry and like she lacks the ability to see where Miley is and make her adjustment as the adult.

Sigh.

Read her latest fourth letter.

Cheers,
Uduak
Photocredit: Getty Images

Dear Miley

Since I do not have any address at which to write to you I do so on my site. Since I have three children at home to take care of, I do not have time to come to meet you.

If you wish you can e mail me directly at Iamwonderful@me.com

You’ve said on Matt Lauer’s show ( where you again refer to me as “crazy”) that you don’t understand why I have been upset with you. I find that hard to understand frankly, since you’re clearly very far from being a stupid woman.

My problem with you stems from your response to my first letter. Until you exposed me ( And Amanda Bynes) to abuse on the grounds of my having sought help (extremely coherently) to save my life, when experiencing suicidal compulsion as a side effect of a medication called Tegretol, I had no problem with you whatsoever.
I hope that clarifies the confusion you expressed on Matt’s show, where you conveniently forgot how it got from someone sending you what was intended as a caring message to that same someone being extremely upset with you.. And then went on to repeat the very action which caused that upset.

I would very much like you please to apologise to myself and Amanda Bynes for having perpetuated abuse of both of us on the grounds that Amanda has had ‘mental health issues’ and that I experienced suicidal compulsion and was open about seeking help in order to save my life.

This should also involve an apology to all sufferers of mental health difficulties and all those who have had experience of suicidal feelings or who have been affected by suicide.

I’m not sure if you are aware that in your own country 7 out of every 100,000 people between the ages of 15 and 19 commit suicide every year. The third highest cause of death for those in that age range (this is the age range you stated on Matt’s show “most of” your fans are) or that on average one person in your country dies by suicide every 16.2 minutes.

You’ve acknowledged most of your fans are “very young”. You might therefore consider being careful regarding what signals you send those of them who may be feeling suicidal and would now be afraid to say so.
In your country suicide is the second highest cause of death amongst 25-34 yr olds.

A lot of these deaths would not take place if it were not the case that stigmatisation and bullying and buffooning of those perceived mistakenly or otherwise to have mental health issues, especially when they seek help, creates silence and causes many not to seek help.

Bullying of those perceived mistakenly or otherwise to be mentally ill causes deaths. Period. As does bullying of those who express that they are feeling suicidal and seek help.

You may have noticed that in your country it is the fashion to lynch young famous ladies in the streets because they have been diagnosed crazy by media and or celebrities. This is an unacceptable breach of human rights. And at some point the media may attempt it upon you. If so they will certainly have to deal with me.

Look Miley, what you did to myself and Amanda encouraged enormous abuse of us both, publicly and privately. And will certainly have made it difficult for young people who admire you and who may be suffering with mental health problems or suicidal ideation to feel they can be open and seek help, since you had us mocked for seeking help.

It is imperative that all suicidal people seek help. Whether they do so on twitter or anywhere else is beside the point. People must save their lives by any means necessary which do not involve hurting anyone. It is extremely dangerous to vilify those who are brave enough to seek help, as I did. Or to support in any way the public lynching of so called ‘mad’ people.

Young people are being buried in their droves, having died by suicides brought about by bulling of the type you perhaps unwittingly subjected myself and Amanda to. The type of media bullying which resulted from what you did causes suicides. And perpetuates the idea that those deemed by the media to be crazy are fit for nothing but to be mocked and insulted. This causes deaths. Period.

As a result of what you did I have had numerous communications from people urging me to commit suicide. Not to mention I have been the subject of literally thousands of abusive articles and or comments left after articles, which state that I and therefore all perceived mentally ill people, should be bullied and be invalidated.
Luckily I am a strong person. And I have four children whose lives would be destroyed if I were to buckle under the abuse you set me up for.. If I were not, and or I did not have four children, these types of communications and these types of articles and remarks could have had their desired effect.

I might add my children have been extremely upset by the nature of media attitudes toward their mother on the grounds their mother is (falsely) believed to be mentally ill.

Certainly there are people out there tonight who will choose to take their lives rather than admit they need help, because when people ask for help, the media and celebrities like yourself mock them. I am sure you cannot have understood this when you did what you did.

People of your own age in particular are vulnerable the world over. It is therefore KEY that you apologise for stigmatising mental illness and in particular for stigmatising those who are brave enough to seek help. It would be much more helpful for you to encourage young people to seek help and not be ashamed or afraid to do so.

That way, if you yourself are ever pushed to the brink of wanting to die because of show business’ effects upon you, you will be less likely to be the subject of the type of lynchings you’ve seen Britney and Amanda have to deal with, or which school kids the world over are dealing with every day.

Also I would appreciate you stating publicly that the tweets of mine you posted (wherein I sought a psychiatrist from outside Ireland so as to save my life) were in fact two years old and do not reflect my current medical condition. This is because it is extremely hard to get employment when people think one is in mid-breakdown.

I have many e mails which I can send you which will show you the effects of what you did and prove all the points I am making here as to the effects of what you did, both personally and professionally.

If you like, my children can also let you have their own personal statements as to how they feel about what they have seen done to their mother.

No person, myself included, should wake to the types of e mails and communications I have had for the last few days urging that I should kill myself, nor to the type of ‘net abuse’ I have had to endure as a result of what you did.

Neither should I now have to have management write to half the show business world to explain my tweets were two years old and that in fact I am very fit for work.

I have four children to support. I can’t do that if people believe me to be unemployable.

I doubt you thought clearly before doing what you did and I’m willing to give you the benefit of doubt on that, as I’d find it hard to believe someone so young could be that calculatedly evil to anyone, never mind someone who did absolutely nothing to deserve such abuse, or to be set up for such abuse from others.

It would be extremely beneficial for yourself, Amanda and myself and millions of sufferers of mental health issues, that you apologise unconditionally and withdraw your remarks. And make clear that my tweets were two years old.

I have no interest in the ‘feud’ which media want. There is no ‘feud’ as far as I am concerned. What there is however.. Is a lot of very serious harm caused to myself and my children and probably to Amanda, and DEFINATELY to silent sufferers of your own age who may look up to you.

It’s really about dignity Miley. All people who have suffered are entitled to dignity and stigmatisation is now a human rights issue.

So.. I’m not ‘feuding’ or fighting with you. But I am asking that you restore dignity to myself and Amanda and all sufferers. in doing so you will restore dignity on this matter to yourself. To leave people you have hurt so badly with no apology is unacceptable.

You may disagree with what I advised you in my first letter.. That is your entitlement. However the letter was written in a spirit of motherly care. You’re entitled to have told me to go fuck myself if u liked.. But to respond to it in a way that has caused so much personal harm and damage to me and to people who may struggle currently with suicidal feelings.. And to abuse Amanda Bynes .. is beyond my understanding, as is your refusal so far to apologise, along with your further calling me “crazy” today.

You’re entitled to disagree with people. But you’re not entitled to incite abuse of those perceived to be mentally ill.

I find it hard to imagine you to be an entirely uncaring girl, so I hope you will prove me right by doing all I have asked you here.

Finally I repeat .. When it’s you the media crazy.. I’ll be happy to punch their lights out for you.. Which is what they deserve. They’ve gotten away with abuse of the mentally ill for too long. This IS a human rights issue.

If the type of language used in the last week about myself and Amanda ( an innocent party) had been used about those with physical illnesses, or about gay people, or about people of different races, or those with disabilities, there would rightly be outrage. Yet there is no outrage on behalf of sufferers of mental illness or depression.

Please do the right thing. You will actually save lives by doing so. There are people who will NOT die tonight, if you are brave enough to state that there is nothing whatsoever wrong with any person seeking publicly or privately, help, in order to stay alive. And that there are no circumstances under which it is acceptable for anyone to use mental illness as a stick with which to beat people.

Sinead.

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AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law blog and podcast show by Fashion and Entertainment Lawyer Ms. Uduak Oduok empowering the African artist and Africa's rapidly evolving entertainment industry through brilliant music business and entertainment law commentary and analysis, industry news, and exclusive interviews.

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. She has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts and handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia.

Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the prestigious Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.
For legal representation inquiries, please email (uduak@ebitulawgrp.com). For blog related inquiries i.e. advertising, licensing, or guest interview requests, please email (africamusiclaw@gmail.com). Thank you for visiting Africa Music Law™.

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