WAS ELISA LAM BIPOLAR? last update 10/2014

Monday, February 25, 2013





ELISA LAM, RIP 


UPDATE AS OF 10/26/2014- more LINKS for you guys to read...

I had no idea when I first wrote a post about the disappearance of Elisa Lam that other souls from all corners of the globe captivated by her innocent smile, youthful sense of adventure, troubling back story and mysterious and haunting death would find their way here to my lowly blog.

I have been honored by the passion and concern that every reader who has come here has shown towards Elisa herself.

I wish upon a million nickels in a well, that Elisa could have known in her young troubled life, that she possessed something so enthralling and ethereal that in her death she would haunt the souls, hearts and minds of complete strangers for years all because of the strange and mysterious end of her young life.

If only she could have known how special she was.

Here are some links to several articles I have found posted in 2014, since I last posted my update last year, 2013. ( please let me know if a link does not work)

Elisa Lam: The mystery you should care about | Daily Maverick

They Don't See Through Us: Elisa Lam Theories: a Death ...

What Happened to Elisa Lam? - disinformation





UPDATE AS OF 6/20/2013- CORONER SAYS BIPOLAR DISORDER CONTRIBUTED TO ACCIDENTAL DROWNING  from website LAIST.COM
 I still just find it hard to wrap my mind around not necessarily WHY Elisa possibly decided to head up to the roof of the Cecil Hotel, but more HOW would she have known how to make her way onto the roof and up the steps and lift the lid of a large water tank and climb in? I believe if she truly did place herself into that water tank with no assistance from anyone, then I believe she was fearful of someone ( real or imagined) and in her frail mental state saw the tank as a good hiding place.  I just still SMH......
The coroner's office has released its long-awaited report on Elisa Lam, a 21-year-old Canadian tourist whose body was found in the water tank of the Cecil Hotel downtown weeks after she went missing.
The report ruled her death an accidental drowning, and also listed her bipolar disorder as a significant condition,according to the Los Angeles Times. However, it did not elaborate exactly how it may have contributed to her death.
In his autopsy, coroner Ed Winter noted that her death was considered "suspicious" due to her age and health. She was last seen a few weeks before her body was discovered acting bizarrely in the hotel where she was staying. Surveillance footage captured her at the elevator in the Cecil Hotel downtown. She pressed all the buttons, ducked in and out and acted like she was hiding from someone. That video plus her disappearance sparked all sorts of conspiracy theories




UPDATE ADDED AS OF 3/5Elisa on her tumblr blog, wrote the quoted post below about her depression and the drugs her psychiastrist had prescribed for her ( see pic)
"Adventures in hypomania Part II
I have been hypomanic since Tuesday.

I HAVE TO GET SOME SLEEP OR I WILL CRASH

and I am so scared of how big of a crash this one will be.

How do I know this is might become THE BIG ONE? My memory is super compromised on present things right now.

It’s just….I understand everything completely. Fellow bipolars, you may be the only ones who will understand what this is like.
With absolute clarity, I understand the universe. My mind isn’t just blown, it’s the hindenburg + hiroshima + nagasaki + san francisco earthquake + a rock concert where the music is so loud your eardrums are bleeding
Like the equivalent of when humans discovered fire but not as big as the Big Bang

And that’s why someone said (see memory fail right here) :

**** QUICK GET ME PEN AND PAPER I MUST WRITE THIS DOWN BEFORE I FORGET THIS IDEA WILL NEVER RE-EMERGE BECAUSE MY MEMORY IS FAILING*

ergo my brain is saying :

“I HAVE SO MUCH **** TO DO BECAUSE I HAVE TO TELL PEOPLE SLEEPING IS USELESS WHY ARE YOU BLOODY SLEEPING THAT’S SUCH A WASTE OF TIME THIS IS MORE IMPORTANT YOU HAVE FINALLY CONNECTED THE DOTS AND YOU’RE GOING TO LET IT SLIP AWAY **** I BET IF YOU WROTE THE WHOLE THING DOWN YOU COULD GET A FREAKIN NOBEL PEACE PRIZE IN ALL THE BLOODY CATEGORIES GAWD WHY HAVEN’T WE EVOLVED TO NOT NEED SLEEP LIKE WE HAVE **** TO DO AND LIMITED TIME AND MOST OF IT IS SPENT LYING DOWN JUST BREATHING I MEAN I CAN DO ALL THE LYING DOWN I NEED WHEN I’M DEAD (but not breathing) BREATHING IS SO FREAKIN OVERRATED I SHOULD BE ABLE TO EXIST IN SPACE IN A VACCUM I MEAN IF THE BLOODY MOON CAN DO IT WHY CAN’T I THE MOON IS JUST MADE OF CHEESE ANYWAYS HOLY ****ING **** TWAT MOTHER****ER MERDE TABERNACLE AI YAAAAAAAA I HAVE NEVER SWORN SO MUCH BECAUSE I ‘WASTED’ 4 YEARS AND IT HAS CULMINATED INTO THIS ONE POINT AND YOU ARE PROBABLY NOT GOING TO REMEMBER ALL OF IT TOMORROW LIKE ****ING HELL SOME PEOPLE HAVE TO DEVOTE THEIR WHOLE LIVES TO GET A PHD IN ORDER TO MAKE A DISCOVERY THAT ADDS THIS TINY LITTLE INFITISIMAL SPECK IN PROGRESS AND YOU HAVE FIGURED OUT EVERY BLOODY THING IN THE SPAN OF 48 HOURS

and that is why another someone (memory fail #1291) said:

You either get it down on paper or you go crazy

tl;dr I need to learn shorthand"

 quote and photo source:  http://nouvelle-nouveau.tumblr.com/post/22304102762/more-its-still-odd-to-me-that-people-are-so  

The story of a young Canadian university student, ELISA LAM, visiting a foreign country by herself and hop scotching across various large and busy cities taking in the sights and sounds alone reminded me of myself right after I graduated college.


Fearless, excited, open to traveling to new and different places, meeting new people and trying new things all while having no one but myself and my enthusiasm. Such is the beauty of being young and feeling the world is your oyster and there is so much to see and do, wherever do you begin?


WHY WAS ELISA TAKING THIS TRIP? WHAT WAS HER STATE OF MIND?

 I found a website in Chinese 

http://www.douban.com/group/topic/36854905/?r=1

 where it looks as though they have pulled all of Elisa's photos and posts from her actual Facebook page and posted them on their site. I conclude this because the only things in English that I could read without a translation program were her posts from the last 5 months or so. If the posts were actually written by Elisa and I believe they are due to so many specific people and places she mentions and the tone of the posts.

another Chinese website posting previous Facebook posts where Elisa herself uses the words" RECKLESS & IMPULSIVE", she talks about introducing herself to some guy she doesn't know in San Diego...

1月25日 新闻报道她去洛杉矶之前在San Diego旅游

Today I slept, took a long hot shower, stuffed myself silly with a $3 dinner. It has been most productive and enjoyable.
I seriously have done nothing in San Diego that is out of the my normal routine at home.
I DO WHAT I WANT
After all, I like my home comforts and every now and then I do something entirely impulsive and reckless like tell a guy I just met I like him…….
I do like people watching at the hostel. 
Now that I’m rested and well, starting tomorrow I should venture outside more. 
1. Seaworld
2. The Zoo
3. Museum because it’s free!!!!
4. Whale watching at Coronado/Point Loma ?


http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_6cfca1ee0101b5pg.html

UPDATE- THIS IS ALLEGEDLY ELISA'S BLOG PAGE:
 ETHER FIELDS:
 and you can read in her posts that she was not feeling well mentally or emotionally--

"I spent about two days in bed hating myself.
Why don't I simply do the things that I know will make me feel better?
It isn't rocket science. It isn't that difficult. Get out of bed. Eat. See people. Talk to people. Exercise. Write. Read. "
"Things are going fairly well in that I am leaving the house and got myself a part time job. My room is still a mess. I haven't actually done any school work and I berate myself for being such a lazy person."
"I feel I am wasting my time compared to my fellow peers. I had a relapse at the start of the term and had to drop 2 of the 3 courses I was taking. Now I am down to one course and I have missed 3 weeks of classes since my sleeping pattern is completely reversed." 
"I haven't felt 'fine' in over 3 years. This relapse makes me feel as though I haven't made any progress at all." 
"I'm very disappointed in myself for breaking down during the term forcing me to withdraw from courses. I've been at university for 3 years and I've only managed to complete three courses. That means I've been a first year for three years and this September it will be for the fourth year because I require 30 credits in order for second year status."
"I just wish...someone around me could understand what it really means to be depressed." 
"Bless the internet. All those who wish to find a way to express their sadness can go there and feel less alone. So many of the tumblrs I follow seem to carry the same grief as me in some way or another.  . . . I simply have no motivation to do anything, let alone leave my bed. My computer and the internet is my one lifeline, one link to the world and reminder to look beyond my immediate situation because there is always more. Always. "
"On one hand this helps me deal with the sadness but on the other hand I basically become a potato. On the outside I look like a catatonic hobo on my bed in front of a glowing screen (no sleep schedule whatsoever but this appears to be a norm for the jobless and the people on the internet) and not eating/sleeping/functioning like any "normal" person. And I shout at anyone saying "Maybe.... you should try getting off the computer?" Leave me alone, I'm happy, this makes me feel better, I need this, this is the one thing that makes me sane, I can't deal with people, just leave me alone, this is something I can actually do, nobody is judging me, I feel less lonely because all these people think like me. "
". . . despite the overwhelming majority of tumblr-ers who seem to be your soulmate, the actuality is they are the minority of the world. And perhaps, they only exist on their computers and they are a muted version of their online selves in real life. And maybe I'm looking at them through the rose-coloured glasses (pixelated screens I think there's a funny analogy in there somewhere) and seeing the person they aspire to be."
  AND THIS IS HER TUMBLR
http://nouvelle-nouveau.tumblr.com/archive

and her photos of beautiful things and moments from her quirky life:
http://instagram.com/moulesmariniere

From what I read, ( AND I AM PARAPHRASING) Elisa had been on another trip a month or 2 before this USA trip and her family was bugging her about packing and prepping for this CA. trip.  She mentioned days where she didn't feel so good ( mentally) and how she couldn't wait to fly out of there ( home, I guess).

She mentioned how if she told/ communicated to her family some of her feelings regarding her mental state, her family would become so worried about her that she didn't want to deal with it. Which suggests to me her family was aware or had some experience with emotional/mental state and they were trying the best the they know how to work with her and whatever her issues were.

She also mentioned several times in late February meeting a person in San Diego or just random mentions of some person that she wanted to hold their hand. She seemed to mention individuals that she came into contact with and was attracted to, but unsure how to proceed.

UNSURE WHAT EXACT DATE IN JANUARY ELISA POSTED THIS: 
"So obviously I hate them. As a friend said, you’re 21, an adult, you can legally leave and go anywhere. I need to find a place to go. The first time I left the house, I was unprepared and I came back with so much emotional luggage. I always thought I could take care of myself but turns out I’m not capable of that. Even living in residence I didn’t handle it well. Not the cleaning up and cooking (yes cooking) but having to go out into the world alone."

I have been diagnosed with a mood disorder which is why after reading her posts, I could believe the person writing them was dealing with mental/emotional ups and downs and trying to figure out how to live her life without alarming her family when she felt her mood begin to shift toward deep depression.

DID ELISA POST THIS ON JAN 9? "I really need to be removed from society before my big mouth gets me in trouble and I get beaten up. "
 
When I was Elisa's age, I took a huge trip from a small rural place to a large one with a friend and I felt NO FEAR whatsoever DURING THE MONTHS I was traveling and sleeping in my car at rest stops in different states and cheap motels ( no drugs or alcohol were involved) I just wanted to escape from where I was and I wanted excitement. I WAS MANIC. I met some people who I thought were nice to me and I took some chances that now thinking back on them make me shudder. I WAS MANIC. I was euphoric and knew that my trip had a purpose and NO one WAS GOING TO TALK ME OUT OF IT. I smiled and chatted with everyone and truly believed people truly wanted to help me and be my friend. I WAS MANIC.

My opinion: Elisa came on this USA trip in an attempt to escape from what was bothering her back home in Canada, not realizing " wherever you go, there you are".

She had some mood swings, she met some people she thought were friends, she was playful and young in a hotel where young and playful signal PREY. She was either slipped something in a beverage or she couldn't fight back her own personal demons any longer and they became obvious to those around her and either way, this poor girl was PREY.

 Elisa's case haunts me because I was Elisa many years ago and her sad ending could have been mine. I weep for her grieving family and friends.

If you think you need someone to talk to - feel free to email me and I can connect you with folks who can help.

More pics from inside the skeezy CECIL HOTEL in downtown Los Angeles  HERE





5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh dear. I do believe that her mood disorder, bipolar illness or otherwise, lead to her end. I believe it was at her own hand. I am waiting for the toxicology results. You have summed it up really well.

Anonymous said...

Excellent post. From reading her blogs/tumblr, it certainly appears that she had episodes of hypomania. I was wondering if you could reference the postings (links & dates) of her interactions w/ her family and their reaction to her mental disorders. As for the quote on meeting a guy she just met that she likes him (possibly a sign of hypomania), she could also be referring to a guy she met in Canada around mid-Jan (a guy with a tatoo on his left hand) that told her that he wasn't interested. I'm curious as to whether she did indeed meet someone (or planned to) in Cali. As for some possible motives (other than just travelling) for her Cali trip, she mentions in Tumblr planning on volunteering at a organic farm in Santa Cruz (wwoof)and taking an intro Comp Sci class at UCSC extension.

Anonymous said...

It is sad for sure but what can parents do? It sounds like the trip started good and took a turn. Traveling can be tiring as it is and Dowtown LA can be noisy and overwhelming as it is without having other challenges. Thanks for your perspective and insight. I am still waiting to see what the tox report says but perhaps they want privacy. My condolences to the family...

Anonymous said...

Very well written, especially in relating her struggles to your own, and to others who deal with depression and/or any other mood disorders. It is difficult for others to relate to 'our' sense of loneliness and hopelessness, so like Elisa we choose to stay silent and let all that sadness fester until we just can't take it anymore. Whatever actually happened to this poor soul, suicide or murder, it's very sad that such a seemingly bright, intelligent and sensitive lovely creature had to go at such a young age.


On a positive note, there is hope out there for folks with mood disorders. Whether it's medication (which may work for some) or therapy (CBT, etc). My own fight with depression began when a professor referred me to a free therapy program on campus, which I had no idea existed.


To affect large scale change the taboos of seeking professional help have to be shattered. One should not be ashamed to speak to family, friends, or even teachers/professors about the struggles they're facing. These cries for help should not be met with skepticism or shame, but rather with encouragement to fight, with words that provide courage and hope to the person who is drowning in their own sadness.

Roger Leir said...

Autopsy report -
http://www.pdf-archive.com/2014/02/24/el-autopsy/preview-el-autopsy-22

 

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