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?

  • http://twitter.com/Cognorati001 Colette Marcheline (@Cognorati001)

    The diagnoses of bipolar disorder have SKYROCKETED in the last years, in addition to other mental illnesses like ADHD. Incidentally, with ADHD the diagnosis criteria were expanded so children were diagnosed at increasing rates. It used to be that bipolar disorder was akin to schizophrenia in terms of numbers of diagnoses.

    That being said, I adore Iyanla Vanzant, but this issue and others are not for reality tv or life coaching — I actually thought the episode with the transmale and the fundamentalist father was more detrimental to the participant’s wellbeing. There is no way to assure a trans, Black man that his fundamentalist father will ever accept him and that their relationship will heal, as his father quite literally cannot alter his belief in dogma and adhere to religion.

    Some things are not so simple.

  • http://musedmagonline.com Drew-Shane

    It was tough for me to watch. I had to stop and start it like 3 different times. Very, very heavy.

  • AM

    One thing folks need to realize is that Iyanla,may be ‘fixing’ people’s lives, BUT, her success or lack thereof is very much reliant on ratings. She is in the entertainment industry, not professional/I care for you and your health industry!

    Nowadays, ratings are determined by the amount of drama, extraness involved. So, of course Iyanla telling Mia to act out all her past demons, and showing her those pictures-irregardless of what they may potentially trigger, basically pushing the envelope-should not come as a surprise. There was another Fix It episode that I caught, and I thought that Iyanla was a tad over dramatic, but who am I to make such mortal observations?

    Personally what bothered me the whole time was Mia’s childlike speaking voice-so unsure, so vulnerable, so trusting of this woman trying to fix her life. Secondly, Iyanla’s insistence/coercion that Mia owns up to her downfall was too much. Every time, Mia brought up the issue of her mom, she was shut down with things such as “YOU need to take accountability”. Ummm, lady-please hear the girl out-don’t interrupt with your fixings! Let her talk until she is all talked out.

    Life is not a one day fix affair. This girl needs PROFESSIONAL help not an entertainment fixer.

    Sorry, Iyanla fans.

  • http://ellecherieamour.wordpress.com theinfamousl

    While I understand Elle’s reaction and opinion, I believe that Iyanla wanted to help heal her spirit NOT her mind. She even stated that she is not there to try to cure her bi-polar disorder, she does not have the power to do so. I understand how detrimental mental illness can be but what needs to be understood is that people are much more than their illnesses. Yes Maia has manic depression and it may have been the axis that all of her issues rotated on but that’s not ALL of who she is. I personally don’t believe if Maia had not been medicated, Iyanla would have gone to those lengths. She specifically said the pictures and the acting exercises were done in order to help her get in touch with her emotions since the medication makes her completely numb to them (which was very obvious and hard to see).
    http://www.theinfamousl.wordpress.com

  • Shirl

    I read the open letter from Ms. Elle and agree with her 100% !!! It’s all about ratings.. Vanzant and Dr. Phil are cut from the same cloth. I read somewhere that she threw a picture of this woman’s mother on the floor (not sure if this happened cause I don’t watch her show) If so shame on her. Vanzant reminds me of a slick politician. She just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

  • Mr. Man

    I’d have to agree, it was a tough watch, the theater portion of the show had me in tears, it was heart wrenching seeing her act out certain portions of her life like that. I can totally see the potential danger in having her go there, and I’ll agree I think it was a very good thing she was medicated because it was rough for me as a viewer. Imagine if she wasn’t, goodness…

  • LMO85

    Drug addiction is entwined yet separate from her mental issues.Iyanla wanted to focus on her choices and decision-making-so that she knows what she is up against if she goes off meds. I don’t see anything wrong with her approach. I am sure Maia has the ability to work with the appropriate therapists in other areas of her life-if not, she should be considering her sentence and living facility. This show was also a tool for the audience to give Maia that space to try and make a come back, no different than any other celebrity who has fallen down.

  • LMO85

    Iyanla would not have been able to work with her if she was off meds, and Maia would not have been there if she was off meds, so all that is irrelevant to me.

  • naturallybettah

    But remember she is medicated because her emotions may be too strong to handle without medication. Maia has had a long uphill battle. Her mother’s book 72-hour hold is based on what they went through in the early stages of the manifestation of her illness. As someone with chronic depression, who is not medicated, at one point I chose to be medicated will going through therapy in order to think clearly because the emotions would cloud my thoughts and judgement with irrationality,

  • ANGEL

    I am not in the mental health field but I am very aware of it…When dealing with ppl with mental illness when you discuss or bring any type of rememberance to them (opening up that can of worms and knowing how to close it back!). Be qualified to do this!…

  • karmell

    As someone with a dear family member going through the same, i can honestly say, sometimes that is just what she needs. I had her watch this episode, as it was like a mirror to her life. Part of the problem is the illness will not let them see what they did – it’s always someone else’s fault. until they admit that they had a part in how things turned out, and face the truth of the situation, things don’t change.

  • AM

    @ karmell,

    True, that in terms of taking accountability. But, in watching Iyanla and Maia, I felt as if she was forced to do so that it seemed as Miss fix it, actually fixed it. Maia did not do so through her own admission. Moreover, I felt that she did not air her entire story/feelings-like get everything out of her chest.

  • JN

    Two of my closest friends have bipolar disorder. I HATE it when people make disorders like BD seem like it is crippling. I acknowledge the open letter that the woman above wrote, but it can be very easy to generalize based on one example. My friends are not representative of all those affected by BD, and neither is Elle or Maia. Everyone’s experience with this condition is different and Iyanla’s episode on Maia can add to stigmas that already exist concerning those who have the condition.

  • Kelli

    You may be right. Nothing is simple. I understand the dad doesn’t agree with his son’s choices, but as far as dogma, the truth is God commanded us to love one another as Christ loved us. He also commanded us not to judge others. He can still love his son and still not agree with him. We as humans have no idea what God’s plan is for that person. If the father doesn’t learn to love his son he could lose his son forever. If he doesn’t his own soul will be in danger, because he is not following this commandment. In God’s eyes this behavior maybe wrong, but that is for God alone to deal with,not the dad..

  • Amber

    She didnt throw the picture on the floor. She wanted Maia to put herself in te position of speaking to her mother’s grave. So she put the photograph on the floor so Maia could kneel and speak to her. I’ve never been too sure of what Iyanla is qualified to do. I thought she was just a glorified life coach. I think her work with evelyn was good but other than that I’m worried about this show…

  • tish

    while i enjoy iyanla’s work, attempting to address someone with a psychiatric issue as if one is a psychiatrist is as risky as attempting to treat a person with heart failure, without knowledge is cardiology. the moment is was revealed that there was an organic mental illness involved, she should have been consulting with psychiatrists…

  • I got sense!

    The problem isn’t iyanla it’s with the people who call on her for help. Unless she forced anyone to come on her show they are thee because they WANT to be there. If they wanted a trained, professionally educated/skilled person to handle their issues they could have went and found them. They were not tricked into going or speaking to her so I see no issue. Some will get help others won’t. No duh, you can’t fix your life in one day. I don’t believe that claim was ever made. C’mon people realize what you are watching….a reality tv show.

  • AM

    I guess you did not read my last sentence, sorry Iyanla fans!! :)

    I hear you loud and clear, but disagree.

  • bijoux

    My thoughts exactly. Iyanla doesn’t fix anything. Ever. All she does is take advantage of these people at their most vulnerable moments for the world to see. It is always embarrassing, humiliating, condescending and very hard to watch. She did it to Evelyn and she did it to Maia. She did more harm than good in Maia’s case.

    We all knew of Maia’s issues. So what next Iyanla? How does she move forward? It was even most difficult to watch when even Maia herself told Iyanla the Fraud, she cannot keep going because she doesn’t like seeing that picture. All a ploy for tv ratings. Never fixing anything.

  • bijoux

    Something about Iyanla doesn’t curl all the way over.

  • bijoux

    100% agreed @AM

  • http://gravatar.com/kristhemiss kristhemiss

    The issue that I had with it was on a professional level. Next month I graduate from Grad school with a Masters in Social Work. She is NOT someone who should be addressing Maia. A) she is not a clinician and B) there is a clear conflict of interest. I didn’t like how she addressed her.

  • Crystal

    As a counselor in training, the first thing you are taught when dealing with individuals who have a diagnosed mental condition ,particularly on the Axis I, is the person is NOT their condition and the condition is not the person. Adjustments to treatment are made to cater to the individual which will give them the maximum benefits for a healthier life but using their condition as a reason for decisions and choices are immediately ruled out.
    In my personal opinion, I do not feel Maia was ready for that type of intervention to deal with her choices and decisions. I do not feel Iyanla was trying to fix her but trying to help her own her choices aside from her condition. The show was painful at times to watch because Maia was not in a place yet to “go there”. Getting to the heart of any matter requires a lot of self-awareness and soul-searching. Maia is not there yet. When she can get to a place of saying, “Yes, I have Bipolar Disorder but it does not define me as a person.” she will be ready to deal with the underlying issues behind her choices and decisions with a counselor/therapist/psychiatrist. Iyanla did level 3 work with someone who has just entered level 1.

    I do not fault anyone in this matter but you have to be ready to do that type of self work and if not it can become very disastrous and painful quickly.

  • Ma’at

    Some of the scense were very painful for me to watch…becauase you could tell her state of being was affected by the drugs that she was taking. I felt a part of her was missing becasue she was so medicated. A part of her personality was in someway altered due to the drugs that were stabilizing her condition. I thought at times Iyanla should have been more sensitive to the fact that she may have made choices that were brought on by the disease that she has. I think there were a lot of issues that she was coping with…the relationship with her mom and of course her being ashamed of the fact that she had to deal with this disease in the limelight as a rising star in Hollywood…it may have just been too much for her to handle. There were moments in the program that I feel that she was making a breakthrough and that it’s going to be a process before she can claim control over a life a gain.

  • http://VerityReign.com Verity Reign

    Great response!

  • NY’s Finest

    Iyanla is just over the top, and it’s something about her that rubs me the wrong way.

  • Beautiful Mic

    Uhm, having bipolar disorder doesn’t necessarily qualify you as an expert in someone else’s bipolar disorder. I can imagine that the disorder does not manifest itself in the exact same way in everyone who has it.

  • paul

    All I know is female friend of mine went to see vanzant (against my warnings) when she was here in London a few years back, and came away feeling robbed.

    sigh!

    People just will not take the time to understand the things and people they expose themselves to.

  • Jay Cee

    I agree with you NY. I used to be impressed with Iyanla, but not anymore. She is too impressed with herself. I did not see the show, but looking at the comments, if she was attempting to “counsel” a psychiatric patient, then she was FAR out of her league and should be srongly reprimanded by somebody for doing so.

  • Sage

    I do not believe that Ms. Vanzant “went too far” in this session. At the beginning of the episode, she very clearly stated that she was not qualified to deal with the mental illness, but while she was lucid, she wanted to help her take responsibility and to heal some relationships, which is what she set about doing. I felt terrible for Ms. Campbell. It was very clear she was on medication and it made her at times skittish and other times sluggish. I think the purpose was accomplished. Ms. Campbell was able to say some things to her daughter and stepfather that she had not been previously able to communicate, and she was able to get her to think about how her choices affected her. I like that Ms. Vanzant continued to communicate to Ms. Campbell the harm in using a passive voice (“the courts put me here’”, etc) as opposed to taking responsibility for the choices that put her in that position.

  • I got sense!

    I’m not an iyanla fan. Never watched the show or read any of her books. Please reply intelligently. If you didn’t have anything of substance then remain silent. I didn’t post for you to agree. Maia made the CHOICE to go on this showing knowing her condition. No one made her. If she didn’t like it she could have stopped. People are taking issue with what two consenting adults decided to do. I disagree with the blatant judgement being passed by so many.

  • I got sense!

    Know why your friend went? Because she is an adult and is free to make her own decisions. If people really wanted to get better they would research and find someone highly recommend in handling whatever issues they have. Not to mention you can do all of that AND STILL COME AWAY WITH NOTHING.

  • I got sense!

    Exactly! Obviously some of the “intelligent” people on her missed these points. I bet they aren’t all trained as counselors/therapists but doesn’t stop them from giving advice to others ( whoever they may be). Lol, people kill me with their judge mental attitudes. Some people need to get the plank out of their own eye.

  • paul

    What are you on about? There was nothing wrong with my friend that she needed to get better from.

    She paid her money to be entertained and all I questioned was whether vanzant could stretch her routineout (beyond the five minutes she usually got on oprah) and deliver 90 minutes of half way entertaining material.

    Not so – turns out vanzant couldn’t even match halfway amusing skit she had on oprah.

    The snake oil she gave em in London was well past its sell by date.

    LMAO!

  • Egypt

    Ok….so Iyanla Vanzant is not a mental health expert…

    Looking at the bigger picture. I’m just glad she tackled the subject that best way she knew how. The subject of mental health still remains a taboo in the Black community. So maybe this will be a message to others who are going through the same thing, but are too afraid to seek help.

    And furthermore, there’s nothing comfortable about the subject of mental illness…

  • AM

    @ I got sense,

    Remain silent, because you are WHO exactly, abeeeeeg, have a saddddddddown. You can make your point heard without resorting to catty bs.

  • http://lorrikey.com LorriK

    It would have been wise of Iyanla to use the experience to bring mental health professionals in on this one. While she is great at what she does, some things are best left to the professionals. I am a counselor, and while I see the benefit of working with her, I also know change takes time and Ms. Campbell’s been through so much. Sometimes you do more damage opening up wounds when the client isn’t ready to “go there.”

  • The Other Jess

    You know what? The nature of mental illness and its effects on many people keep many of them from ever being ready to “go there”. Thus, you have to take the most direct approach possible to finally force them to start acknowledging their illness and acknowledging how their behaviors and decisions are negatively affecting their progression in life – and to finally, seriously gethelp for life.

    Unfortunately, a common symptom of having bipolar disorder, I or II, and even scizophrenia, is that people remain in total and utter denial even when they are well aware of something being wrong. The stigma and shame of having to acknowledge an illness of the brain make people deny to their own detriment – and i’m talking homelessness, involuntary committments, and broken social relations.

    Sometimes tough love is the ONLY approach, ready or not.

  • Egypt

    Not sure what happened to my comment..

    I agree that Iyanla is definitely not a mental health professional, and I don’t necessarily think that it was her intention to provide a medical cure, or make some sort of a mockery out of the situation.

    I, for one, am glad that she took on the issue of mental illness, way too many brothers and sisters are dieing simply, because they refuse to seek help. The topic of mental illness is still taboo in the Black community.

  • http://gravatar.com/nolakiss16 binks

    Agreed! The person who wrote the letter needs to stop generalizing; you can’t paint all people with similar disorders with the same brush. I get that living with a mental disorder can be hard and makes up a big chunk of who you are but at the same time just like anyone else, people with mental illness have to take personal responsibility for their actions too. The world just doesn’t stop and is automatically righted when you are diagnosed nor people don’t automatically forgive and forget just because you have a mental illness. Yes, it might have been hard for her but like you said it was probably even harder for the people who loved her to watch her downfall. Basically, if you go to Iyanla Vanzant one knows she doesn’t mince words but you are going to get a bowl full of tough love and reality. As mention, she doesn’t promote herself to be a mental health physician and though I’ am sure it was hard for Maia to reenact and see herself in the pass light she KNEW what she signed up for. Furthermore, different methods worked on different people, just because you might think “she went too far for one” it might actually have helped that person why another person it could have destroyed. Hopefully Mrs. Vanzant is keeping up with Campbell and was adamant that she continue to work with her physician for her bipolar.

  • justanotheropinion

    I like Iyanla in the fact that she has a positive message to impart and she wants to help black women overcome, conquer and succeed (after all, there’s enuf folks trying to always bring us down). I realize Iyanla has had issues and is a work in progress – aren’t we all? Whomsoever, this was a dog of a different breed. This child needs bonafide professional MEDICAL help. That ain’t Iyanla. Once Mia gets her mental persona together, she can then progress to other areas for growth and work her way UP TP Iyanla.

    I’m no medical person, but it’s obvious that Mia is still in the stage where she needs clinical/medical help. I lost a little bit of respect for Iyanla to even engage in trying to help someone that wasn’t ready.

  • Ronald McFadden

    Who made Iyanla Vanzant the resident expert? Who? Iyanla need to fix her own life before she can try to fix somebody elses. Now tell me Iyanla… “how can you say to your sister, ‘sister, let me take the speck out of your eye, ‘ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

  • __A

    Too many black people put entirely too much into prayer and Christianity that when it is time to do something for yourself such as seek professional help they don’t do it. I have heard so many people say pray for me or I’m going to pray for this and that when they need to go to the doctor or seek outside help. I’m not trying to down Christianity or religion, but everything can’t be taken to the Lord in prayer and solved. You gotta do something for yourself sometimes. There are many, many black people that think therapy and getting help is “for white people.”

  • __A

    I want to add that most of the time people with mental illness will need help from outsiders to get help, so the outsiders need to think about this. You can continue to pray and all of that while at the same time seeking help for a friend or relative with mental illness.

  • IMO

    The show was very painful to watch for many reasons but the two that stick out the most were to see a young woman in the crux of a crisis, and to see a person I have watched grow up on television. I think Iyanla was harsh but for her intended goal, harshness may have been required. I think Maia is already under a doctor’s care since she lives in an assisted living facility, she is on medication and her previous legal confinement. Iyanla did have a conflict of interest and the first day when they were at Maia’s residence it showed. I don’t think Iyanla was ready for Maia to say her pain started prior to her diagnosis, the manifestation of the Bipolar episodes in her life, and the drug usage but that some of her mother’s choices and comments triggered insecurity in her. Iyanla did say this would be hard for her as she knew the family and was friends with the mother. At times, Iyanla appeared defensive when Maia made statements that weren’t flattering to the mother. On the show, Maia was never disrespectful to her mother but Iyanla interrupted her repeatedly when she wanted to bring up the pain she felt from something her mother said to her. Additionally, as Bebe’s friend, Iyanla was probably privy to expressions of Bebe’s pain over Maia’s descent. Given Iyanla’s own daughter’s death I wondered if that came into play as well. If Iyanla was a licensed therapist she ethically would not be able to work with Maia due to a conflict of interest.

    I thought the theatre venue was creative as Maia is a professional actress and she was comfortable there. It may have had a two-fold purpose, she could confront her past using role play and she could be on a stage which she missed.

    The episodes with the (step)father and daughter were good for both them and Maia. Iyanla treated that part with the care and compassion.

    Hopefully, Maia’s therapist/psychiatrist followed up with her and can continue to help her heal. On many reality shows they have a licensed therapist on the set to help the participants after an especially traumatic scene. In watching Iyanla it is critical to keep in mind that 1- you are watching an edited TV show, 2- the episode is one hour long but the filming was many hours, 3- she may be able to help jumpstart a change in someone’s life but the real work of change will begin when after she leaves.

    Peace and blessings to Maia, she deserves it.

  • shaQ

    Well said. I have a bi polar disorder and meds were not helping. It took tough love and people being real with me to find the root of my illness and pluck. Now today it doesn’t haunt me anymore.

  • DJ

    I think that you raised some really good points here and hit it right on the nail.

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

  • http://gravatar.com/dginki Kim

    All I can say is black folk are some hateful people. SMDH.

  • http://gravatar.com/dginki Kim

    Thank You!!!!

  • alethia

    I disaggree with the letter writer. I think that I yanla did a good job in trying to get Maia to accept who she is and where she has been. In a 1 hour show you are not going to get someone to fix and heal their whole life. I thnk that her approach showed that there were still some areas of Maia’s life at that time that she was still afraid to confront. By forcing her to confront those areas and awknowledge them she was able to, I feel help Maia release some of the shame, guilt, and denial surrounding those issues. I believe that this was a very good step 1 and that Maia is on a clearer path to healing. I think that we need to continue to support her because she was willing to do the work in a public forum which I feel was amazingly brave of her. Folks this is real life. The Maia we saw was the product of years of drug abuse/self medication and I think that most folks were shocked to see her in a medicated state and felt that Iyanla should have gone easy on her but I think that Iyanla did what was best and most important to help Maia repair her own life.

  • http://www.harlempride.org Love & Light

    Even when guided by a “professional,” and I seriously think we need to rethink the boundaries of that term, no session is ever perfect, no treatment plan is executed without a hitch. Even with what some may deem as a misguided approach, there was an intention to do good, to heal, to love…many concepts I’m sure Ms. Campbell’s life has been void of over the years.

  • http://gravatar.com/niajolie JJ

    Maia may have trusted Iyanla because she and her late mother were close friends. Who knows maybe Iyanla consulted with Maia’s therapist or doctors before she even sat down with her. I don’t know enough about Maia case to say definitively that Iyanla crossed the line

  • chinaza

    The concepts of acceptance vs.denial, shame or tough love have limited application in the patient with bipolar disorder (or schizophrenia, by the way ).For the very reason that their reality is fluctuant and unpredictable and they typically lack insight at different stages,
    Bipolar is a very serious, biochemical disorder and it’s dangerous and disruptive for anyone- outside of her mental health team- to attempt any therapeutic intervention with Maia.
    The diagnosis alone is often difficult and many patients have co-morbid conditions which also require treatment.
    So, with the best of intentions, Iyanla is in deep waters and it’s no reflection on her competence otherwise.

  • paul

    kim

    what hate do you see in my post?

    I’m hateful just because I said vanzant is snake oil salesman, who couldn’t even deliver good snake oil?

    That’s not hate sweetie – it’s disapproval.

    I disapprove of people who prey on other people’s weaknesses for their own personal gain.

    Furthermore isn’t vanzant’s reputation tarnished enough by her own betrayal of her mentor – oprah, when she chose to sign up for a gig with barbara walters, even though it was oprah who gave her, her break?

    But why are you accusing, not just me, but blacks in general of being haters, in defense of someone whose character and ethics we know to be questionable?

    what – because you got taken in by someone on tv with a slick line in spiel?

    ok

    heed this woman

    in the JonesTown mass murder in 1978, 90% of the victims were female and 80% black . . . .

    Yeh – I’m a hater, I hate that so many of us are so gullible.

  • http://Facebook Mrs. Kirksey

    I have to say that prayer does work but just like anything else, it doesn’t help if that person you are praying for doesn’t want to change or make things better. Example….do you think a drug counselor goes out and look for people who are on drugs? No! The drug addict goes to the counselor/rehab. The counselor then helps those who are wanting and willing to change. Those who are not willing to change or make things better do what? They leave rehab or stop going to counseling. My point is that an individual who is sick mentally, physically and/or spiritually can get the help they need to be healed and/or recover but only if they can first recognize the problem, second, admit and accept the fact that they do have a problem, and third take the first step in dealing with that problem by seeking The Lord and professional help. God always hears our prayers whether its for ourselves or others. But those prayers only get answered when we are doing what we are suppose to do as Christians. The bible explains in depth how to be Christ like. Totally and completely.

  • ms_micia

    Iyalna doesn’t treat or diagnose mental illness. There are alot of people with and without mental illness that need a healing of the soul. She is a soul hearer. As humans we have gotten so used to diagnosing mental disorders and treating them with brain altering DRUGS instead of getting to the root of the issue of the SPIRIT that can cause a mental breakdown to occur. Yes, she may have been struggling with a mental illness but what Ms. Vanzant does is very neccassary. Her being drugged up with psyco-therapy drugs hasn’t stopped her on her downward spiral. So maybe just maybe she needed something else. Heal the spirit, heal the heart, heal the mind and everything else will come into alignment. We diagnose people into victim hood as if without drugs they cannot and will not be able to function. Simply untrue. Spoken from a woman who’s brother was diagnosed with schizophrenia who after healing his heart and mind and gaining a CLOSE and REAL relationship with GOD was taken off medication. #Godisrealpeople

  • ms_micia

    I get that Iyanla is on TV now, but trust, years have passed without an Oprah TV show and Iyanla has continued her journey in healing. She may not have an illustrious Ph.D but she IS a proffessional, in my opinion. She is a minister of God. The philosiphies she applies don’t come from the DSM-IV they come from the Bible and applying God’s thoughts. If Maia in conjunction with getting her spirit in order wants to sit on someone’s couch and paw-paw over her past, she’s free to do that as well. But for the most part, when you go on this show your wanting tools in order to get to a different state of being. All a therapist is trained to do is listen and maybe help you with how YOU determine your next step to be. Iyanla is like that sage old wise woman you go to for wisdom. It’s not always gonna be this gentle taking of the hand, they’re gonna keep it real. If you want to move to a different place in your life and heal you must step out of victimhood. Take accountability so you can take YOUR power back. Once you stop giving away your power, you can then feel empowered to make lasting and sustaining changes in your life. That’s what Iyanla is teaching these people. Not how to continue on the path of blame and victimization.

  • ms_micia

    I think ( not knowing your friend though) that many people go to “healers” or seek spiritual guidance expecting some grand life altering change. YOU are the change. Someone else can’t do that for you. I’ve seen and heard many people that paint themselves to be one thing or the other. Iyanla is very transparent. People who are trying to sell you snake oil normally don’t put on the package the ingredients. She is the realest person in healing ministry I know. She admits when she is wrong, she is honest about her mistakes. She is human. She’s not a miracle healer who’s gonna bop you upside your head, say a prayer in Yoruba and your life be automatically changed forever. For what she’s doing and how she has to function in the realms of a nationally broadcast show with PRODUCERS and WRITERS and other people’s interests other than her own, I think what she is doing is ground breaking. Where else on TV can you find anyone who is on any level fascilitating or galvinizing healings???

  • DAJ

    I agree. The psych community uses too many soft approaches and keep patients too drugged up to face the root of their problems head on. Most psych methods, counseling, etc…does NOT work. If Iyanla shook up Mia and forced her to look at her problems, then good for her.

  • Michele

    She had been in this residence for about a year. At what point should she address the decisions that she made? Sure, she has a mental illness, she needed to take some responsibility of decisions she made. Maia doesn’t get an automatic pass of “I’m bi-polar” as an excuse for bad decisions. If Maia doesn’t think she was damaged by this approach why should others?

    Maia was under medical care in conjunction with what Iyanla was doing. Isn’t that the best way to handle it.

  • Donna Love

    I want to see Ms. Campbell back on tv, well and health. For years I wondered what happened to her. Gods’ blessing to her and her daughter.

  • charlene

    ms vanzant seems to have had her share of problems due to decisions she has made. it was hard to watch her beg oprah to accept her back.sometimes women in her position seem very hard, mean spirited even when they call themselves “helpng” others. when she smiles, {guess that’s what it is] she looks like a predator about to pounce. oprah and iyanla really need a good long look at themselves. rich, powerful,but their hearts aren’t always in the best place

  • Black

    I see a lot of people saying that Iyanla’s approach was acceptable because she was attempting to make Maia recognize her own accountability for her actions… but what is accountability? We hold people accountable when there is nothing hindering their ability to make clear rational choices. In Maia’s case there is a major hindrance, and we all know that it is her diagnosis of bipolar disorder. It is no different than being reprimanded as a child, and your mother asking you “are you crazy?,” (PLEASE NOTE I am not implying that Maia is crazy) or “have you lost your mind”, “did you bump your head?” Of course these are rhetorical questions, but the reason they work so well is because if the answer to any of those questions had been “yes,” then you would then be relieved of your accountability. To me, it does not matter what she has done:drugs, prostitution, stealing, or whatever, she in my eyes should not be held fully accountable for her actions.

    Let me add that I do have a degree in psychology, and I took it very seriously. I do not believe that you people understand what goes on not just in her mind, but in her entire body. There is a major physiological contribution to her mental disorder, my expectations for Maia and any other person with this disorder are NOT equal to those that I have for a person who does not suffer from a mental disorder- Period!

    Needless to say at this point I’m sure; I found Iyanla’s approach very inappropriate. All of that “Healing souls” mumbo jumbo is ridiculous! Jesus is the only person that can heal and/or save my soul- not sure about anybody elses. She can pray for that girls soul but that is it!

    I did read ’72 hour hold’ the fictional novel her mother wrote based off of her own experiences some years ago, and maybe some of you should too. The insensitivity to her mental disorder is alarming.

    P.S. I’m really starting to believe that ‘I got sense!’ is Iyanla!

  • Echi

    The very definition of Bipolar Disease I is that it IS crippling. In order to be diagnosed with it it has to significantly prevent you from day-to-day functions, particularly during the manic phase. It’s quite possible that your friends DON’T have Bipolar I, or they are so medicated that you have not seen them in their crippling moments. Or maybe they have Bipolar I or cyclotjymic disorder. It is highly inaccurate and a disservice to many when you say that Bipolar is not crippling. The diagnoses of many psychiatric disorders are highly entrenched in generalizations since there are no blood tests or radiographs that you can do to diagnose them for the most part.

  • 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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