New York City First Daughter-Elect Chiara e Blasio has completed an outpatient group therapy program for depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. In a video released today by incoming mayor Bill de Blasio’s transition team, the Santa Clara University sophomore describes growing up with clinical depression and increasingly leaning on alcohol and marijuana to cope. “Removing substances from my life has opened so many doors for me,” she says of her recovery. “I was actually able to participate in my dad’s campaign … Now I’m doing well in school and actually getting to explore things that aren’t just partying.”
The video raises more questions than it answers. Why Christmas Eve? Why ever? Did a reporter have the story? Is this to distract us from the De Blasio aide dating Eliot Spitzer? But the political strangeness is sort of overshadowed by the candor and everyday importance of Chiara’s message. It is: Don’t be ashamed to get help if you’re unhappy, even if you can deal with it in more or less socially acceptable ways like drinking and smoking pot. What college freshman home on winter break doesn’t need to hear that?