R.I.P Mac Miller: Deeper Than “Stop Using Drugs”

Mac Miller
Credit: @PaintingsByAnthony

The news of Mac Miller dying of apparent overdose is heart wrenching. Now, in my 30’s whenever I hear of a young person dying, it literally breaks my heart. It’s so much life to live. So many things to do. So many dreams to chase. You never get too old to go after everything you want in life. When it’s cut short, the world has been robbed of your greatness. That’s something that is so difficult for me to process and digest at this stage in my life.

Since the album “Watching Movies with the Sound Off”, Mac Miller had an obvious battle with depression, anxiety, heartbreak, fame and he was using drugs to cope with all of that. The music was telling. It was expressive, reflective and dark at times. When he found love again, “The Divine Feminine” showed a different reflection and state of happiness. “Swimming” drops and he’s back to depression and somewhat aimless. It’s got to be difficult to have those looming emotions as a young person and not sure what to do with them. It’s got to be difficult to have the highest of highs and the lowest of lows, but be so famous and well off that no one around you that’s close feels they can help you. He was pouring out his heart. We were all listening. Many people industry and fans alike loved Mac Miller and his spirit. It’s hard to show a person battling depression how much you mean to them. That could honestly be a 24 hour job if they don’t receive that love in the proper dosage at the right time. Depression is a tricky emotion. It makes you think no one loves you but yourself. Then it tells you it’s nothing there for you to love either. How you cope with that varies. You can chose a vice or an outlet. When you make your outlet a vice, that’s when it gets tricky beyond any true understanding.

The common thing I’m seeing again is people simply saying, “Get off drugs” “Leave the drugs alone” “These kids got to stop all this damn drug use”. You’re right, but you’re misguided in your advice. Drugs are easy to quit when it’s nothing wrong with you. If you’re just trying to be “cool” and trying to “party and have fun” drugs can be “left alone” just like that.

But when you’re lonely. When you want to escape the bad day you just had. When your heart is broken and you want to cry and talk to someone but you feel you have no one, those drugs become your best friend. They become your dependency; Your addiction. They become a staple in your life on the days you feel you can’t get through. That’s not something you “just stop doing”.

I’ve never been on drugs, but I’ve watched addiction. I’ve also watched the birth of the WorldStar era. I’ve watch social media slander. The pressures of young men and women wanting to create and have rap dreams, but have somebody that grew up with them tell them they’re too old to be chasing their dream. The light-skin vs dark-skin battles. The “wanting to come out but family and friends may shun or disown you” anxiety. The need to lose weight and have a fat ass, because that’s all that’s getting attention on your timeline. The need to make it look like you got money angle so that man or woman will finally pay attention to me cycle. We live in a time that people are so scared to be themselves that drugs give them the opportunity to escape and at the very least make it feel like they are somewhere else.

I reach out to as many of my young homey’s as I can and I always try to make sure they know they can reach out to me. Why? Cause I truly love them all. I don’t say it enough or to some of them at all. I need to get better at that. I don’t want to be in tears one day because a “Mac Miller Situation” has hit too close to home. I don’t want to have anybody I care about feeling like they need to escape because the pressure of life has gotten too great.

It’s so much deeper than “Stop Using Drugs”. You got to be around and show love to the people you call “Bro” “Sis” “Fam” “Homey” and “Friend”. Then you got to stay around. I’ve had people leave my life that I loved and cared for. I’ve battled self doubt, depression and anxiety because of the way people have treated me and my talents. It fucked me up. Probably in more ways than I truly understand. I thank God I didn’t look at drugs as a means to cope every time. Who know’s where I’d be if I did. I’m one of the fortunate ones. I been in that space where drinking was an escape. I’ve lived in that moment where “I don’t care if I live or die” with the biggest smile on my face. I’ve also gotten that text saying “I really need a reason to not kill myself” and man…You’re heart and mind is never the same after that.

If you don’t have a hand, an open ear, a “moment of time” or a “minute to talk” to somebody that needs to “stop using drugs”, then you don’t have a right to tell them how to cope during the times that you have no time. Yes, the drug epidemic is serious. Yes, drugs are addictive and causing death. But never forget, you have to find drugs, pay for drugs and use the drugs before any of that can happen.

When’s the last time you talked to someone on drugs?
When’s the last time you talked about someone on drugs?

R.I.P Mac Miller. I hope you are in the peaceful, happy place that you were striving to be in. The world is missing you already. Condolences to his family and true friends.