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John Davidson and Tourette’s

john davidson tourettesA few weeks ago someone who reads the How to Have Tourette’s series recommended the documentary John’s Not Mad to me. I had never heard of it, being an uncultured USA homebody and this film was made in the UK. But the more I looked into the man that was the subject of the film, the more fascinated I became. John Davidson and Tourette Syndrome have a long and storied history. I haven’t yet watched the film–it’s still really hard for me to watch tape of other people’s tics, although I don’t have the same problem in person. Don’t know why.

But I’d like to point it out to you today as a resource if you or someone you know has Tourette’s and is looking for something inspirational. I’m inspired by the story even though I can’t bring myself to watch it.

In part I was fascinated because I could identify with the poor guy (don’t let him catch you feeling sorry for him). But he was also dealing with a case that was so extreme that it made my own self-injurious behaviors and mild echolalia seem pretty tolerable by comparison.

Among other things, many of John Davidson’s tics were those Hollywood, obscenity-laced outburst that get mocked in several movies that I can think of.

The film actually follows John through his village as a 15 year old with an insane case of Tourette’s. A teenage boy yelling vile things involuntarily must have been an absolute nightmare for his parents to deal with.

I am reminded once again that no matter what is going on in any of our lives, there is always someone suffering worse and handling it better! I’m humbled just reading about John’s struggles with Tourettes.

And  I hope that one day I’ll be able to watch the film so I can actually understand what I’m writing, and not just wonder.

IMDB link to John’s Not Mad.

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