“I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy because they know what it’s like to feel absolutely worthless and they don’t want anyone else to feel like that.” – Robin Williams
We have often heard or seen instances when a pained heart breeds poetry. But there are some who transform their pain into comedy and perpetually try to make others’ lives happy even when they are dying inside. Jim Carrey’s life was an example of this.
Jim Carrey drew his sense of humor from his crumbling personal life. But the pain never left his life, it changed forms but it never really left.
His childhood years were spent in emotional turmoil and disturbances as his father lost his job and his mother became sick, reports PEOPLE. The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind actor’s father lost his job when he was 12. By 16 he had dropped out of school and had started supplementing in family’s income. Working odd jobs and spending his days in poverty made him angry and turbulent.
“My family kinda hit the skids. We were experiencing poverty at that point. We all got a job, where the whole family had to work as security guards and janitors. And I just got angry,” says Carrey. “I was angry at the world for doing that to my father. I wanted to bash somebody’s head in, basically.”
With time, he understood that his parents need his love more than anything and that gave birth to his desperation of making their lives better. Seeing his sick mother in pain made him desperate to do things that would make her smile.
It was the struggle to cheer his mom up that made him discover his sense of humor says Carrey to CBS, in a rare and candid interview in 2004, “Desperation. I had a sick mom, man. I wanted to make her feel better.”
“Basically, I think she laid in bed and took a lot of pain pills. And I wanted to make her feel better. And I used to go in there and do impressions of praying mantises, and weird things, and whatever. I’d bounce off the walls and throw myself down the stairs to make her feel better,” he revealed to CBS.
He learned to channelize his depression and pain into something more meaningful and heartwarming, reports PEOPLE. His spot-on celebrity mimicry and incredible physical comedy gradually made him the name that is said in the same breath as comedy. His comedy career was soaring high but throughout his dating life, he was battling the depression from his childhood. He encountered love many times in his life, but success in his love life remained far from his reach.
Carrey married actress Melissa Womer in 1987. They divorced after seven years together and have a daughter, Jane, now 28. He then married Lauren Holly, his Dumb and Dumber co-star in 1996. The marriage lasted barely eight months. After the divorce, he dated actresses Laurie Holden, January Jones, and model Anine Bing.
Carrey can be “a hard guy to date,” a source close to the couple told PEOPLE at the time. “Jim can run hot and he can run cold,” the source added. “He is someone who desperately needs to be with someone, then just as desperately needs to be alone. But at the same time, he can be a very loving, very compassionate guy.”
However, he was really hit by another heartbreak when his girlfriend Cathriona White, who he dearly loved, passed away. Carrey had an on-again, off-again relationship with the Irish beautician and make-up artist from 2012. He was shocked and deeply saddened when 30-year-old was found dead in her apartment of an apparent suicide. This incident struck him like a “lightning bolt.”
“I am shocked and deeply saddened by the passing of my sweet Cathriona,” Carrey said in a statement. He added, she “was a truly kind and delicate Irish flower, too sensitive for this soil, to whom loving and being loved was all that sparkled.”
But life doesn’t stop for anything or anyone, does it? Carrey knew that he had to smile through it all. He knew that there are a lot of people out there who wait for him to make their lives better and ease their pains. “There are peaks, there are valleys,” he added. “But they’re all kind of carved and smoothed out, and it feels like a low level of despair you live in. Where you’re not getting any answers, but you’re living okay. And you can smile at the office. You know? But it’s a low level of despair. You know?” he said.
Carrey, who has found a spiritual inclination in recent years says that his past has made him more aware of the present and future. “Well, I have gone through a lot changes in the last few years and a lot of realizations — and I guess you could say awakenings about things. Everything is touched by that, everything I am doing creatively right now seems to point to the awareness of a lack of self. What are we? Why are we here? And the answer to both of those questions is: nothing, no reason, as far as I am concerned. It’s just about playing with form.”