The Psychology of Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson was a musical genius, a generous man whose charitable gifts put him in the Guinness Book of World Records.  He transcended musical barriers. But we all wondered about his skin color in relationship to his racial identity. We all wondered about his obsession with plastic surgery. His childlike demeanor was bizarre and parenting skills were suspect. He was found innocent of child abuse, but some still wondered. This is my view on the complex man we called the king of pop.

We all saw him evolve into an almost alien creature devoid of what we loved him for. Michael Jackson changed from a pecan colored adolescent to a pale ghost of Peter Pan. People who suffer from vitiligo do not fade consistently and most use skin darkening makeup, instead of the drastic bleaching that he put his body through. How can he say that he was proud of being black when his final visage was paler then the moon? Was he a proud black man that hated his own visage due to the taunts and abuse of his father? How does one love and hate their ethnic identity simultaneously. Was his skin, nose, hair texture so much of an anathema to him that he could not stand to see traces of them in his children?

Michael was a deeply wounded soul. Could you imagine the responsibility he had at the age of eight? Can you think of what it might have been like to be subject to the whims of Joe Jackson and be your families’ breadwinner as a child? The scars from his burn were accompanied with emotional scars just as deep. His later music made it clear that Michael mourned his childhood. He was never allowed to mature but he had adult responsibilities as a youngster.  He was so obsessed with childhood that his home into an expensive playground. He yearned for the paradise of Neverland, but was accused of child abuse. Michael Jackson was stuck in early adolescence, in many ways, his soft voice, tendency to befriend child stars and vague non-sexuality, befit an eleven year old not a 50-year-old man.

His prescription medicine addition was supported by unscrupulous health professionals. It is my hope that they are found responsible and punished to the full extent of the law. Was the infamous Pepsi Cola burn lead to a 25 year addiction? Which pain was more unbearable? The remnants of the purported abuse or the physical pain of the injury?  Did his inability to mature and rise above his own childhood elicit a pain that most of us will never experience?

Even in death,  he is still an object of global curiosity, as we rediscover his music and choreography questions swirl like locusts. Was his death a result of fowl play? Who will raise his children on a permanent basis? Who will manage his financial empire? Will he be finally buried in his beloved Neverland?  Is there music in his cataloge that was never released to the public?  As all this plays out I am glad that Michael is at peace and will never have to sing “Leave Me Alone,” again.

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