Maia Campbell appeared on a special episode of Iyanla Vanzant’s “Iyanla Fix My Life” franchise called “Iyanla, Fix My Fallen Star.” The airing was anticipated highly as viewers were eager to see what had become of the actress. Campbell was first introduced to the public on the popular 90s sitcom, “In The House” before her reputation was tarnished with rumors of prostitution and drug abuse.

On the hour-long show, Vanzant delved into the actress’ past including her relationship with her late mother, New York Times best-selling author Bebe Moore Campbell, and her inability to play an active role in raising her own daughter.

The episode was powerful but many viewers took issue with Vanzant’s approach because of Campbell’s bipolar disorder. Elle of Five East Tumblr writes in an open letter to Iyanla Vanzant:

[Maia] is diagnosed bipolar and is living in a facility that helps her manage her life. Bi-polar is not just a PART of the problem. Bi-polar is the axis on which her life rotates. All of her issues stem from her mental illness. A mental illness that you have no experience in dealing with or treating. What you did to that woman was irresponsible and DANGEROUS. [...] Thank GOD she was medicated because showing her those pictures of herself was enough to trigger a manic or depressive episode. I know because I’ve had manic and depressive episodes. And unlike you, I know enough to know you don’t f*** with the stability of a person just cuz you can.

It’s true that when a subject struggles with mental health, one should be experienced and qualified before aiming to treat or “fix” his/her issues. It’s debatable whether Iyanla’s approach did more harm than good.

What’s your opinion, Clutchettes? Did Iyanla take things to far in her episode with Maia Campbell?

  • S

    Her soul is not bipolar. Love of source and love of self heals.

  • S

    There is just too much to say so I will leave it at this.
    The soul is not bipolar, The body is diagnosed bipolar not the soul.
    Iyanla provides more healing, growth, love and support than most people trained in the “profession” of helping those with Bipolar I, Iyanla is not only qualified to help she should be training Psychiatrists, Psychologists and Social workers who have already been traditionally trained so they can better serve those they treat because she teaches exactly what is sorely lacking in the field. The power of Love is rarely mentioned, if ever, in medical school. :)
    Self love. How to acknowledge and forgive the past, how to live in the present, to trust that the universe is a loving teacher that you can learn and grow from, that you can, regardless of your past take responsibility for your own self care, that there is nothing wrong with your heart and you can grow to trust yourself and choose who you want to be in this world regardless of diagnosis.
    I am personally grateful Iyanla treated this woman as a whole human being and not as a disease and it is Iyanla and those like her who will teach this woman how to heal herself and teach her how to move through this world whole and balanced.

  • Lisa

    The percentage may vary depending on the source but 74% of the world is not Christian. Have you looked at the list of famous people who have been diagnosed with Bipolar. It is a who’s who of some of our greatest and most inspirational figures in the arts and sciences. You can have higher expectations for bipolar people than other people if you go by that. Maia is capable of being as great as anyone with understanding, encouragement and love. Roughly 1/3 of people in the world will have a “mental issue” at one point in their lives. In the USA it is roughly 46% of people have a mental disorder or issue. In any crowd look to your left, to your right, behind you and in front of you and you will see the face of mental illness. This is part of humanity and life and we need to reach out to each other for a greater understanding of how we can all lift each other up to our highest good. We are in this together. We all make up our communities and our society. If you ask me that is what Jesus or any other spiritual leader would encourage us to do. Find ways of working with each other out of love. Iyanla showed her some love.

  • Pingback: Was Iyanla Vanzant too hard on Maia Campbell during her ‘Iyanla, Fix My Fallen Star’ episode? | The Black Informant

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