Celebrities,  Odds and Ends,  Other Disorders

What’s wrong with Jim Carroll?

Alrighty then… this has little to do with my subject (BPD), but I stumbled across a picture on wikipedia yesterday of Jim Carroll. I was writing a post on the ATSTP List about tough love. I will follow up here more on the tough love idea shortly, but I wanted to show how boundaries can be used in tough love, and about how those boundaries are for YOU, not for your loved one. In other words you have to enforce those boundaries for yourself. Boundaries are choices about what YOU will and will not do for/with/about your life and your loved ones. The best example of tough love that I could think of was a scene from “The Basketball Diaries” (the movie) which is based on the book by the same name by Carroll. I found the scene on YouTube here:


The actual scene starts at 5:35 and be careful there are some pretty graphic things before the 5:35 mark. The scene involves Carroll’s (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) mother not giving him money for drugs. Carroll is a heroin addict at the time. It’s worth seeing just to see tough love in action. If you watch you will see that the tough love is tough on both of them and, more importantly, the mother chooses to use her boundary (“I will not give my son money for drugs”), rather than try and control HIS behavior, which many people think boundaries and tough love are all about.


Anyway, I started looking into Carroll on wikipedia and stumbled across this picture of Carroll taken last year (ok, he’s only 57 in the photo).

Jim Carroll at 57

Here is another photo taken of him in 2000 (when he was 50).

Jim Carroll in 2000

I mean, Jeez, what happened to him? Some have speculated heroin again, but it looks like meth or AIDS to me. Here’s a blog post about Carroll’s reading from last year. It’s just so sad.


  • Rick

    He’s dead now, but yeah it’s obvious that his drug deamons got the best of him in his later years.

    Heroin is like that (i hear); once you’ve experienced what it can do – you’ll never forget it; and you’ll always want to go back – no matter your age.

    It’s too bad, but shows you how fragile the life of a former addict can be.

  • uknowme

    Sorry kiddos its only an opinion but that looks a tad bit more than simply being on the gear…Possibly a condition caused by the extended use of heroin POSSIBLY “hepititis c, blood born germ Aids etc…however normally u see a yellowing of the eyes and skin in the latter stages of c…hell who knows…regardless he was gifted, the basketball diaries was as close to the realistic side of how a herion addicts life is,..loved the scene where each would get clean and then see the other and turn their face from them…its reality lol….rip

  • Bev

    Yeah, I was wondering if he went back on heroin when I saw that pic, too. He really deteriorated in a short period of time. Anyways, he seemed like a cool guy nonetheless…and such an amazing talent. May he RIP.

  • Luke

    If he was using anything it would be speed. If he was on heroin, his pupils would be pin point. If you read his second diary, Forced Entries, he explains how he got into really bad into speed.unlike The Basketball Diaries, he gets clean at the end of the book. Regardless of what, or if, he was on drugs when he died makes no difference. Carroll was an excellent writer. You should all read his last book, The Petting Zoo, it’s great.

  • Widdicombe

    Dead right Bon.Hes not caviar eyeball so its not Hammer.Could be on the Goose juice program though.
    Hammer is really evil.Once your gone it damages your body’s chemistry, so you don’t go back because you remember but because you never feel quite right again ever. The war on drugs is a sham,Prohibition keeps the prices up so the criminal incentive to profit remains. The PTB know this but it is worth more than Gold and the establishment worships Mammon, the buck.
    The Taliban almost extinguished the Afghan opium crops,getting their production down to 1% of the illicit world dope.So the US (still a British colony due to the FED) sends in the Army to protect the crops so now its back on top of global production.Suffer no illusions, we are ruled by a dynasty of psychopaths.

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