Amanda Bynes May Seem Crazy to Us but That Doesn't Mean She's Mentally Ill

OMG 10

Amanda BynesAs much as we all seem to think that Amanda Bynes is off her rocker, authorities say she's not. At least not to the level that she can be held in a psychiatric facility against her will, reports TMZ. Amanda was hauled off to a psych ward for evaluation after being arrested in her New York apartment, where cops say she threw a bong out the window (which she denies). This was after reportedly smoking a spliff in her building lobby and muttering incoherently. While the strange platinum wig she's been wearing might scream CRAY, the truth is, it's not that easy to take away someone's freedom and stick her in a mental facility.

Although Amanda has had her license suspended (and then continued to drive for days until her car was finally impounded) and she's ranted on Twitter and posted half-nude photos of herself, and told a pilot to Google her, if this rose to the level of being mentally incompetent, most of us would probably spend some time in a mental facility.

When Amanda was sent to the psych ward after her arrest, TMZ reports that the psychiatrists there didn't believe an involuntary hold was warranted. For an involuntary commitment to hold, a person has to be deemed by a psychiatrist to be a "substantial risk of harm to self or others."

While certainly there have been plenty of cases of genuinely mentally ill and dangerous people on the streets that should have been off of them, making it difficult to send people to an institution against their will is for the benefit of us all. Once was a time that women were routinely sent to mental wards against their will -- for everything from adultery to epilepsy to just their husbands being tired of them (one complained his wife didn't do her housework) -- and they never came back out again.

The difficulty society has is in knowing when out-of-the-norm or "rebellious" or "strange" behavior is actually a mental illness presenting itself -- but it hasn't lapsed into dangerous behavior yet. How do you know when it's going to? Or if it never will? Unless someone is making direct threats, you really don't know. And we can't run around committing everyone whose behavior makes us uncomfortable.

TMZ reports that the only other way Amanda could be committed against her will is if she doesn't understand the charges against her -- but given that at her hearing she sounded fine, that's unlikely.

So we're all stuck with Amanda's wacky behavior for awhile.

Do you think Amanda should be committed? Have you ever tried to commit someone?


Image via AmandaBynes/Twitter

celebrity, celebrity gossip


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cassi... cassie_kellison

I find it highly suspicous that a gossip rag like TMZ is your source of information. Come back with REAL sources and then maybe I can take you seriously.

Rootbear Rootbear

If everyone just ignored her she would slip quietly back into irrelevancy.

Rache... RachelsMercy

@ cassie_kellison: Actually TMZ is right 99% of the time. TMZ is run by a LAWYER, Harvey Levin, who is VERY careful about the sources they use for information. They double, triple, and quadruple check their sources and facts. And in the whole time they have been around, they have only been wrong, I beleive one time.

Lauren Wasinger

Amanda Bynes is not mentally ill... she's a druggie. Totally different.

OneAl... OneAllergicMama

Not being able to hold her doesn't mean she isn't ill, it just means she is not an immediate harm to herself or others.  I cannot be held right now technically on that qualification but it doesn't mean that I don't suffer from mental illness.

erina320 erina320

Can we talk for a minute how so many child actors end up like this. The pressure and negative influences on these little people seems to destroy them in adulthood, but it seems to be an abuse accepted and even supported by society so that the rest of us can turn on the television and be entertained...

zmont... zmontague

While I don't think she needs to be committed, I do think she needs therapy.  Something in her life is obviously not right and I think she probably just needs someone to sit and listen.

Melissa Silberberg

Her parents say she covered the smoke detectors because she thought there were cameras in them and that she hears voices. Crazy enough? Sometimes a 72 eval is not enough. Amanda is clearly not well. Her parents want to help her but can't. I think something should be done.

Laurie Palmer

As someone who has mental illness in my family,, I do believe there is a problem. Being mentally ill DOES NOT mean you are incompetent. It means you have a chemical imbalance. But there is such ignorance and stigma in our society.  I respect how Catherine Zeta-Jones handled her bipolar diagnosis and is out in the open about it. It's too bad Amanda Bynes is unwilling to find out if there is an issue. I hope her parents can do something. Her behavior must be a great concern to them. 

cecel... cecelove13

Mental health can be very tricky, her behavior seems have traits of paranoia...she is famous enough that if she starts to make unlikely accusations the ilness might be obvious, still you can't be commit a person just because of a mental illness...

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