Suzy Favor Hamilton: The Salty Running Interview

Champion on the outside. Human being on the inside. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor-Hamilton.
Champion on the outside. Human being on the inside. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor-Hamilton.

Prior to December 2012, Suzy Favor Hamilton, from what anyone could tell, was a former Olympian doing what former Olympians do and then … BAM! … there she is on TMZ being outed as a high end escort in Vegas. There was always something particularly charismatic about Suzy even beyond the beauty and the athletic gift, but no one in the running world saw that coming. A former Olympian with a husband and child leading a secret life as a Las Vegas escort? It certainly was unusual news, which meant everyone and her brother began to speculate, myself included.

As soon as the news broke, Suzy’s response was unusual: she did not do what we expected her to do, deny or hide from the truth. She didn’t come out and explain things, but did hint the truth would eventually come out and it might not be what people expect. Almost two years later, that story is finally out in her new book, Fast Girl: A Life Spent Running from Madness. While 20/20 and Dr. Phil can use the salacious parts of the story to bolster their ratings, I wanted to know more about Suzy the runner … and human being. I am so thankful she agreed to chat with me, and today I am very excited to share our interview with you.

1. Let’s start with where you are right now. What’s running like for you these days? Do you simply run for health and happiness or do think you’ll ever compete again? And is it hard to find the interest in competing after being an Olympian? It’s kind of hard to top that!

That’s an easy one. I run for fun. I’m not fast anymore. In fact, I’m flat out slow. My body won’t let me run fast as the mileage caught up to me years ago. I do wish I could run faster as that’s the type of running that really helps my mind the most, so I’ve found other activities I can do with the required intensity like cycling, barre, climbing, etc. And no, I have zero desire to compete again. I think from the book, you can tell that it was the competition part of running that I didn’t care for due to anxiety.

2. Speaking of the Olympics, one thing I was sad to read was that you generally didn’t enjoy your Olympic experiences. It was heartbreaking to read about your fall in 2000, that you felt so much pressure to achieve success for your family and to prove your naysayers wrong. If you could do it all over again knowing what you know and experiencing what you’ve experienced, would it be different and how would it be different?

Remember, we’re dealing with a not-so-healthy brain. The pressure I felt was self-imposed and I had things way, way out of whack. Zero perspective and I kept EVERYTHING in. I wish I had a voice back then and could tell coaches and others what I was feeling. I think simply letting it all go, getting some help, medication, etc. back then could have helped me immensely. We’ll never know.

3. Do you think you would have been so driven in your running career if you came from a more emotionally open family?

Perhaps. I’m so happy to finally have a voice these days and wish I had one growing up (and even well into adulthood). I was so obsessed with running and winning. If I could have expressed what I was feeling to family, perhaps a consistent discussion of priorities & perspective would have taken place. Drive is good, but mine was clearly an unhealthy one where pressures built and destructive behavior followed.

4. Similarly, in what ways (if any) do you think bipolar disorder affected your running career? Looking back at your time as an elite runner, can you point to any signs of your illness that appeared during that time? How might running tell someone that she might be suffering from bipolar disorder?

Well, I can’t pinpoint when bipolar took hold of me. It’s different for everyone afflicted. For me, it only became obvious to the extreme in my 40’s, but looking back, there was a suicide attempt in college, extreme anxiety during my running career, from high school on. Lack of perspective & rational thinking, lack of focus. Both my doctors and I believe that running helped manage my bipolar until late into adulthood. So I’m not sure how running could tell someone they might be suffering from bipolar. I do believe this…..Running is good for the brain every bit as much as it is good for the body.

5. If you discovered you had bipolar disorder during the height of your running career what would you have done about it? Would you have medicated even if the medication affected your ability to perform? Does your running impact your current course of treatment? Is there anything unique to competitive runners that they should consider when seeking treatment for bipolar disorder?

There’s a lot here. Of course I would have taken whatever medication a psychiatrist proscribed to me (although based on experience, when the meds make you feel like crap, lethargic, etc. you become tempted to stop taking them as I did in late 2010). A lot of things would have been treated differently. We would have done exactly what we did when we discovered I had bipolar. Medication, therapy, elimination or reduction of triggers, and creating an environment best suited for someone with bipolar.

[pullquote]I see the gift of running as a blessing.[/pullquote]I have no idea how all of that would have affected performance, but with the perspective I have today, who cares. I’m focused on much more than that. My hunch is that bipolar was responsible for my excessive drive, which in running, might not be a bad thing, but on the other hand, there’s a belief that it also was responsible for this lack of perspective and extreme anxiety. When you look at my career, my failures were rarely a result of physical failure, but instead a mental failure.

Today, running, and other forms of exercise, along with my art and my outdoor adventures serve as an important part of my therapy. I can’t see medication alone being an effective way of treating bipolar. There’s so much more to it than that. I will always believe that I was driven to running and embraced it so intensely because my brain needed it. I will be forever grateful to running because I believe it kept my bipolar at bay for years.

Anything unique? I could be wrong, but I believe many if not most competitive runners have to be a little “crazy” to do what they do. I have no idea if the competitive running population has a higher rate of bipolar disorder or other mental illness than the rest. What I do believe, and I have heard this so much from others who have shared their stories with me, is that many inflicted with mental illness clearly use intense running or other athletic activity to calm their minds. As I mentioned earlier, for this reason, I see the gift of running as a blessing.

6. I loved reading about your friendship with your Wisconsin teammate, Mary Hartzheim, especially from your perspective.  But there seemed to be this dichotomy among elite women runners: the supportive friends and teammates like you and Mary in contrast with the intense win-at-all cost mentality that led to, on the petty side, cattiness, but in more extreme cases doping (Regina Jacobs) and self-destructive behavior like eating disorders and what happened to Kathy Ormsby. Even when you write about your time in the sex industry, you were competitive but managed to be supportive and friendly with other women. Do you think women can compete at elite levels in a healthy way? From your perspective is there a way to foster healthier competition among women runners?

Suzy and Mary were incredible runners, but unlike some elite women runners, supported each other. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.
Suzy and Mary were incredible runners, but unlike some elite women runners, supported each other. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.

Good question. I could be wrong, and this is going to be a very general statement, but I have always sensed the good male runners tend to do things “healthier” than the gals. Not to say that men don’t take PED’s, have eating disorders, OCD, “cattiness”. But it just seems like the guys tended to have more friendly competition, camaraderie, FUN. Just seemed that way & I was often envious. I don’t know how we change it for the better for women, but I do think a good women’s coach needs to be aware of the differences and coach accordingly.

Interestingly, I’ve been contacted by several female runners I competed with and against and they thanked me for writing the book and speaking out. In a nutshell, they said, they went through many of the same things I did as a runner but didn’t have the courage to speak about it.

Suzy's and Mary's long friendship lakdsla Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.
Suzy’s discussion of her friendship with Mary is one of the highlights of her book. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.

Regarding cattiness, with my career being well over, I see some of the elite women get a little nasty with media comments on occasion and just want to say to them, “Ladies, it’s silly. You’re going to look back on all this someday and realize it’s just a foot race. Be thankful for the gift you’ve been given”.

7. There is a theme in your book about you being controlled by or seeking to please men in your life. This is not uncommon for competitive women athletes. Do you think you would have performed as well with a female coach? Would you ever consider coaching? Do you still feel the need to please?

I don’t know if control is the right word. I certainly was a pleaser. Bottom line for me is that throughout my life, I often did things more to please others than for my own benefit or free will. Not that anybody said I had to, mind you. Again, my perspective and more was way off throughout my life.

As far as coaches go, well regardless of whether the coach is a male or female, let’s face it, they must exercise a degree of control, and as the athlete, you do what you’re told, every day, every practice, every race. It’s just the way it works. I feel I would have performed fine with a female coach, but Peter was simply the coach I had so much respect for (and still do), that I would do anything he asked of me and then some. I do believe a female coach tends to be better equipped to deal with issues unique to women.

[pullquote]I do think a good women’s coach needs to be aware of the differences [from men] and coach accordingly.[/pullquote]I actually did help coach at Pepperdine back in the early 90’s. Loved it! Very low key program with a bunch of grateful athletes. I have been asked to assistant coach by a couple of college programs recently, so you never know.

My need to please is nowhere near where it once was. I still like to take care of others; I like to make others happy. I see all of that as good, but I don’t have this obsessive need to please where I once did. Medication, therapy, clarity. They all help in this regard. When you have a mental illness, this will sound selfish, but you really have to take care of yourself in a big way. Management is a full time job.

8. Reading your book, it was clear that you have thrived when you were achieving something and you struggled when you were not. You thrived as a successful athlete, while pregnant and as a new mother and then as a successful escort. You struggled when you weren’t the star of the show. Now you are again in the limelight promoting your book. So, what’s next for you? Can you be content not achieving or being out of the spotlight?

I have to say that I wouldn’t agree. I COULD NOT WAIT for my competitive running career to be over. As mentioned, I was competing not to let others down. When it was over, what a sense of relief and freedom I felt. No retirement press conference or anything. I just kind of vanished. 2005 was amazing with that freedom, my pregnancy and the birth of my child. I spent the next few years laying low, relatively speaking and just did a bit of public speaking, trying to raise awareness on mental illness, pressures, etc. It wasn’t the spotlight I missed at all. Now obviously, in 2011, everything changed when my mania really kicked in. At that point, yes, I wanted to be the star of the show, but I was in a very unhealthy place at the time.

If you think I am enjoying the limelight I am receiving these days, you would be mistaken. The writing of the book and resulting publicity tour has been a huge trigger for me. Lots of crying and sleepless nights behind the scenes. Many times, I have wondered whether writing the book has been worth it. Then I receive the many emails, letters, tweets and comments expressing that my story has helped somebody, inspired somebody to get help because they are not alone, maybe even saved a life. At that point I’m good.

Pursuing excellence in a new venue, Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.
Pursuing excellence in a new venue, Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.

So can I be content being out of the limelight? Of course. I know the book will come and go, publicity will stop, and I can go back to relative anonymity. I don’t’ want to go completely away as I feel I have a platform to make a difference, but certainly don’t want to be in any kind of long-term limelight. That’s a big reason why we moved to the West Coast. To get out of what was a little bit of a fishbowl for me in Madison, and to a place where nobody knows who I am. It’s healthier for me and I love it.

As far a being content not-“achieving,” that’s a different story. I always want to be good at what I’m doing, whether it’s a mom, wife, yoga instructor….whatever. That’s just how I tick. That won’t change and I want to set an example for my daughter to be an achiever as well as someone who can rise up from rock bottom.

9. You talked a bit about your critics during your professional running days, those who complained you were overhyped as an athlete because you were attractive. Now, you face new criticism of a different sort. The main thing I’ve heard people criticize you for is being narcissistic and self-absorbed.  Were you over-hyped as an athlete? Are you a narcissist? What do you say to your critics?

Other than $%#& You?

I kid.

Was I overhyped as an athlete? The book covers this quite a bit, but I think the answer depends upon time frame. As a high school and collegiate runner, I think I did pretty darn good, and deserved whatever “hype” I might have been receiving.

Now as to my first 6-7 years as a professional, clearly I was overhyped, but realistically, what am I going to say to a sponsor who wants to pay me or put me in a magazine ad? No thanks, I don’t deserve it? Track has enough issues with getting attention. We as athletes had to generate attention for ourselves to get noticed. The valid criticism is that my performance during that time did not match the attention and salary. Now, by 1997, I had been cut by Reebok and my other sponsors, was not getting nearly as much attention, and was hearing whispers at every turn. Messed with my mind, so much so that I returned to a place I never thought I would return to, Wisconsin and Peter Tegen. While my Sydney collapse is what I’ll be best known for, I am pretty proud of how I ran during 1997 – 2003. I don’t believe I was overhyped at that time. [pullquote]Mania is a difficult concept to grasp unless you have experienced it directly or indirectly.[/pullquote]

Am I a narcissist? Well, I don’t think your going to get a “yes” answer from too many people on that one, even Donald Trump. I think lots of professional athletes tend to have some narcissistic traits. Told how great they are on a daily basis. In my case, what I would say is that what you often hear about people inflicted with bipolar is that they are selfish, they are narcissists. Listen, you do what you need to do to make your brain feel good. In many instances, you try to get your brain from a depressed state to a manic state, and you don’t let much stand in your way, and remember, rational thinking is out the window.

So does becoming a top escort in Vegas appear selfish & narcissistic? Of course it does. Does it look like I craved admiration, put my interests above my family’s? Yes. Look, you can believe whatever you want to believe, but I know I’m no narcissist. When in my manic state, I have certainly exhibited narcissistic behaviors. But if you think that’s me in my healthier state, you don’t know me. What I have found from reaction is that if you understand mania & bipolar, and are affected by mental illness in some way, you get it. If you don’t understand and aren’t affected, you focus on the act and not the illness and you see me in a very negative light. Difficult nut to crack.

I suppose you can also be fooled by what’s going on presently. I didn’t have to write a book. I could have just gone away quietly. Well, here’s what I have to say about that. I wanted to be understood (and wanted my life back). I felt a book was the best way to do it, where you can tell what is undeniably a complicated story. I waited nearly 3 years to do it, once I was in a healthier state. I also felt the telling of my story could help people with mental illness, could help those who live or love someone with mental illness, and I felt this book might show someone without much knowledge what mental illness can look like.

I know we live in a cynical society where people will see that and disregard it. I must have done it for the money or the attention. All I can tell you is that you’re wrong. Mania is a difficult concept to grasp unless you have experienced it directly or indirectly.

10. Would you support your daughter if she wanted to pursue professional athletics, even running? What advice would you give her if she wanted to become a competitive athlete?

Suzy and her husband Mark are working hard to heal their family. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton
Suzy and her husband Mark are working hard to heal their family. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton

My husband and I have a very open dialogue with our just turned 10-year-old daughter. You go through something like our family has and I think it’s the only way to go. We encourage her to communicate with us as to how she is feeling about whatever sport she happens to be competing in. She swims, plays soccer, dances, and is just getting into Volleyball. She told us last night she wants to learn how to surf. She lets us know if she’s feeling pressure from her parents or a coach and we talk about it, always trying to find that balance of enjoyment of sport, working hard and doing the best you can do, with this societal pressure to win or else. We always want her to have a voice and not be afraid to use it. Couple years ago, she said she wasn’t enjoying gymnastics anymore. That was that, and good on her for telling us. I wouldn’t have done that as a kid.

If she wanted to pursue a professional career, we would simply warn her of the many pitfalls we have witnessed. Compete if you enjoy what you do, keep things in perspective, and stay away from any ideas of perfectionism. Sports are wonderful, but in this win-at-all-costs society where 8 and 9 year olds are already specializing in a single sport, with personal trainers and practice or games 5-6 days a week, it’s a little scary and makes you hesitate and want to protect your daughter from what could be a very damaging experience. Proceed with caution is the simple way to put it.

***

ifgewyifgoiw Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton
After years of struggling, Suzy’s future is bright. Image courtesy of Suzy Favor Hamilton.

I want to thank Suzy for so graciously taking the time to answer my questions. I respect her greatly as an athlete, a spokesperson for those suffering with mental illness and as a person. No matter how honest or authentic she is there is always the danger that people will misunderstand or judge her; it’s clear it took a lot of guts for her to discuss her rock bottom so publicly!  It is my hope that we have presented her here just as she is: clever (but not without honesty) strong (but not without vulnerability), and a mindful and grateful survivor.

Whether or not you are familiar with mental illness, Suzy’s story offers an insightful look into the way it can affect someone and the role running can play in keeping a mind healthy.  And if you (or someone you love) have suffered from mental illness, hopefully this interview can help you see that you’re not alone, and there is a way forward.

After this interview what are your thoughts on Suzy’s story? What else would you like to know?

Salty Running boss and mother of 3 little ones with PRs of 3:10:15 (26.2), 1:25:59 (13.1) and 18:15 (5k). I love to write about running culture, mental training, and fitting in a serious running habit with the rest of a busy life.

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17 comments

  1. I have cheered Susie favor on since she was a kid.
    Not knowing about the things that have happened to her and her family.
    It saddens me that people instead of helping her out go for her jugular it’s a sad state of affairs. It is also sadthat she had to move out of Wisconsin.
    A lot of people say that I will forgive them but I will never forget. That’s not forgiveness forgiveness is I forgot it.
    Susie Favor Hamilton will always be a class act to me.

  2. Mark Kozin is telling it like it is, and prompting critical thinking. The point I understand him making is very clear. “Why is SFH contradicting everything she has led us to believe?” I stop short of accepting his remarks completely only because there is no documented proof that she has had sex with ‘some’ of her old clients. If Mark were to unveil an investigation of her continued sexual escapades, wouldn’t there be an even farther fall from public disgrace for all the lies?

    What is truth Suzy? What can we trust from you? How can we be sure that you are being honest with us (with the controversy surrounding your quoted words being so controvertive?) If Mark Kozen is correct, this will go down in history as a huge fraud. Would it be beyond reason for law enforcement agents to investigate Federal and State laws being violated by SFH after being outed? Why hasn’t there been any move by the IRS to prove her tax evasion? Her daughter will eventually be asking these same questions. Then what?

    1. “Prompting critical thinking” usually applies to something that causes people to think about something in away that is constructive or productive. Perhaps you and Mark could stand to do a little self reflection and invest the time and energy you’re devoting to “out” Suzy Favor Hamilton into self improvement … or actually helping children.

      I like an open discourse on topics, but this is just flat out not productive and malicious. I will not approve any more comments on this thread unless they add value to the conversation and I will delete any from approved commenters that do not add value.

  3. I do appreciate you may very well like SFH. But the story these two are putting out is a fairy tale designed to make them money and try to salvage a reputation (that is not deserving rehabilitation) by turning lemons into lemonade. It doesn’t pass scrutiny at all. Read my comments again as to the 2012 interviews in Madison and SFH not showing any trace of mania, nor for that matter in Vegas. Read her reviews by her Johns as to her temperment. Then read real descriptions of what mania looks like. If the parents were alone……who cares, but who writes this kind of book about their really sordid sex life in Vegas for 18 months that they KNOW will tormrent their daughter in the years to come? The statemennt it is for others to understand Bipolar?……..there is not 10 pages about rote off the interrnet Bipolar in a 300 page book. This from a women who very seriously was considering signing a contract with Vivid (Porn) Movies (after her outing by The Smoking Gun) to star in an x-rated movie of her life in Vegas. An old lawyer story illustrates this matter. A woman is walking her dog down the street. The dog bites a child and causes permanent scars. The woman is brought to court. Her defense is, “The dog did not do anything wrong”. The prosecutor shows the scars on the child from the bite. So the woman says, “It is not my dog”. SFH is not shamed because “she did nothing wrong” (what about the effect on her child her own unecessary book will cause as well as all the original acts already documented?). Maybe the Bipolar did cause the orignial Escorting (not really but for arguments sake) then what caused the book? There is hardly anything at all about bipolar in it. SFH says simultaneously, “I was delusional”, “I knew exactly what I was doing”, and ………..”It wasn’t Suzy, It was Kelly” (“Not my dog”) She says early on if she knew she was bipolar, she NEVER would have started the sex….”Absolutely Not”…….she had been on Zoloft supposedly for 2 months and says she was manic and did not know…so she started the escorting. When outed and hospitalized and told she was bipolar she continued seeing several of her johns. Why wasn’t there an “absolutely not” at that point?? She was still on zoloft, says she was still manic……..so why didn’t the knowledge of being Bipolar stop the sexploits like she said it “absolutely” would of earlier on?…if only she had known! Well at this point she DID KNOW and it didn’t stop her. She still states she wants that sex high (see the end of the Dr. Phil show and the People interview…..and she is not manic now).

    My goal is to get the media, the bloggers, the writers to apply critical thinking…..examine the statements and answers of their subjects and ask the hard questions and follow up questions to expose fakes and validate true experiences that deserve attention. The coarsining of our culture won’t stop until people see this garbage is not rewarded by wrongly sympathetic ears and voices that will help retell false stories, but that people be held accountable for bad behavior. Lest you think this is moralizing….. if there was no defensless child involved, this matter would not rise to much concern. While it should be more or less ignored in the case, when a child is the victim of the crass behavior of her parents……..then you SHOULD go after them if they are in the wrong. Mark Kozin

  4. I left out the specific reason WHY in my above comment I don’t believe SFH has stopped escorting and indulging in other hidden extramarital sexual activity. First, every time you view any tape of her around 2012 when she was an active prostitute and there were a few that can be seen on you tube, she never tells the truth of what came out later of her hidden life. But, second, look at the tapes not for what she said but for the calm demeanor she displays……..no different from today’s post expose interviews and numerous pre-prostitution interviews. Then put that together with her STORY of the Zoloft causing the mania with the hypersexuality. Manic phase patients (Suzy even says during that year she was delusional) can’t sit still for any period approaching those interview times and present as calm and collected as she clearly did. Speech and temperament typical SFH. That doen’t happen. Now SFH might answer, “I said when I went back to Madison, I crashed”. She was on Zoloft that entire year and when outed and hospitalized she even blames the slow withdrawal of Zoloft for causing her “slip”……….i.e. went back to Vegas to service several of her old clients…..this fromm the girl who said much earlier, “If I had known I was Bipolar neither Mark nor I have ever started the sex”. Well that exact thing came to pass with the hospiitalization and diagnosis…..and SFH was quickly back in Vegas hooking again with the FULL knowledge of being Bipolar. Those were exact same conditions as when she began the sexploits. You getting the drift? Her words and actions don’t correspond. Now it is also not the case she crashed when going back to Madison…..the taped interviews don’t show manic or depressive state of mind. You don’t crash from manic to depressive if you are Bipolar and are maintained on Zoloft. You stay manic, period. But we see she was not manic. Read the Erotic Reviews……some 35 go into detailed accounts of the encounters along with the actual dirty detailed sex acts. No manic behavior described. She was refined, well mannered, a good conversationalist. Her madam saw no signs as if she did she would have gotten rid of her because of the problems manic behhavior would have caused her agency eventually. This is, sadly, an elaborate excuse employed by SFH and her husband to re-claim reputatios. Mark Hamilton’s behavior…..agreeing to his wife cruising Vegas for pick ups (she was alone andd could have ended up dead (how would that fit in with, “I didn’t leave because oour daughter was so attatched to Suzy”?) employment as a whore at a high end agency, BUYING HER A CONDO AT TRUMP TOWER (better to hook from rather than expensive hotel rooms, being with her when the hooking was actually taking place and knowing about the Brother’s suicide from Bipolar and knowing Zoloft was started 2 months before all this started??? This did not go down the way they are portraying. No one concerned with a young daughter woulld write a book that WILL without a question of a doubt damage the child and subject her to read someday these words from her mother’s mouth…..a devastating blow to their own child. The book is quickly dropping in sales as I suspect people sense the B.S. that I have laid out reasons here that that is exactly what it is. The Amish reaction to such transgressions against a child should be the response of the public. Mark Kozin

  5. Before my answer. This is not pure Bipolar. The anxiety, the lack of empathy, the regret only as to “pain I caused” but no regret for the behavior. In fact “I loved ” the behavior, could not have enough, extreme flirtatous behavior all thrrough her life. Borderline Personallity Disoorder with Narcissistic elements mixed in. The interview at a Detroit radio station where she was drawn in to be flirtatious in talking about her sex acts with 5 men at once…….”how mucch sex and how many men” were the only cconcerns. And then her going out with the number 1 escort….that excited the 2 shock jocks doing the interview. They all but propositioned her on the air…..and she loved it. After she was off they basically talked for a few minutes about how they could go for those two if they were in Vegas. Yet she hung up on another interview where (Mercere?) was critical of the gratuitious sex……which is undeniably true. She told her husband the details of a 3-way with 2 men ……..how great it was…….he only was worried Suzy might be recognized!? Have to drop him from the discussion. In July 2012 she was interviewed in Madison and said everthing was perfect…..not the perfect the viewer thought but she was really talking about her sexual exploits. In the Dr. Phil show and the People interview she answered in two opposite manners. People…..I miss the sex and can’t say I won’t do it again. Dr. Phil, she went both ways…. I miss the High ( the high was the sexual acts ) and “It wasn’t me, it was Kelly”…..”I would never do that again”. The daughter’s sensibilites are ignored for Favor-Hamilton to “explain” in the book “It wasn’t me” but then again “I knew exactly what I was doing” ?? Hunh? She maintains friendships with the escorts including Jamie Rodmam (her madam/pimp). Like an alcoholic re-habbing in a bar with his old drunk drinking mates. The husbannd is in Madison a lot and Favor-Hamilton is again traveling. My answer : she still hooks up when she can (can’t believe it when she says everythhing good now….just an occassional down day….see July 2012 interview in the middle of her 18 month sexual exploits….”Everything Great”). After her Bipolar Dignosis she met with some of her old clients…..this after she said if she knew she was bipolar “no way I would have started the sex”. Yet she knew for sure when they started her on Lamictal yet she still saw more clients behind her husband and his family’s back while the husband and daughter were back in madison and she was just out of the hospital in California. She dismisses as just a “few slips”. Traveling…….she still sees clients. Her treatment comes first she says, then her family…..no change. Putting her daughter first would be the best treatment with analysis to build a structured psyche she is missing. At 47 years old, soon age will temper her sexual demons. She needs to learn the middle way of Siddharthra. The high she still chases will burn her soul to a crisp. The middle ulltimately proves more satisfyingg then the fever of tthe high. Yoga without a self understanding is of little help. Unfortunately her book and interviews have polluted the internet for her daughter to read her mother’s words how she wanted “more sex for more money with strangers”. Think of reading that from your mother. This book is inexcusable. No book to protect her daughter would have at least limited things to no details from her mother’s mouth and only the 2012 internet stories. Then a blurb on her web site of her Bippolar disorder …..left at that….would perhaps have made things livable for her daughter. Now just google her name and hundreds of sodid articles, most 2015 appear. “My candle burns at both ends, it will not last the night, but ah my foes and oh my friends it gives a lovely light” No it doesn’t……..put one side out and cool it off. Mark Kozin

  6. Risky sexual behavior is the most common sympton of the manic or hypomanic state of bi-polar disease. BUT……by far, the most common…..universal in virtuually every reported case of Hypersexuality…. sex category is un-protected sex. However, Favor-Hamilton ALWAYS practiced protected sex according to all the evidence presented, including every single one of the 35 “hobbiest” reviews (called The Erotic Review, hooker ratiings in Vegas) of “Kelly Lundy” on The Smokinng Gun (Hamilton’s alias as a prostitute). It simply doesn’t fit in with what she states was her “Delusional State”….”at this time” She was NOTdelusional enough to forget to “wrap” all her johns before intercouurse with condoms or insert a female condom in herself. But she was too delusional to empathize with her crying daughter on the phone (lost all her maternal instincts as she puts it) and she was very irritated by her phone call (husband put the daughter on the phone with Suzy because the child was crying for her missing mother) and Suzyy “didn’t need this” from her daughter while “so many rich men in vegas were waiting to adore her”. The DELUSIONAL STATE did not go so far as to endanger Suuzy’s health from Aids and other STD’s…..just made her delusional enough to abandon her daughter…..kid’s emotional health?….a too deluusional Suzy could not focus on that! Her “risky” drug behavior went all the way to Ecstasy! Wow……..join the crowd Suzy you and about 30 million youngsters. Never got risky enough for the cocaine on her dresser. She refused…..don’t you know it. And don’t forget her lemon drop matinies……very risky to Suzy’s health…..we can tell by how horrible she looked after her year off from her kid hooking in Vegas…..just a wreck in her delusional state…don’t you think? No? well matbe her good genes overcame the wear and tear. Oh!……forgot how Favor Hamilton repeatedly said…..”I’m no victim, I knew exactly what I was doing”…….yes she did know…….what she was doing to her daughter, then ……and far worse in the future when the daughter will have to read these callous, deliberate things from her mother’s own written words. BUT…. Suzy wants her life back and just HAD to tell her story with this book is the FIRST reason she states…….so much more important then her child”s well being…… then, second, to help other Bipolar people, she says. Most people know about Bipolar. Virtually every Bippolar somehow manages not to go hooking in Vegas though……because they too know the behavior is not normal….but know who they are. True delusional state in Bipolar is marked by Psychotic Break with hallucinations. Suzy presents nothing close here …..and again, “I knew exactly what I was doing”. She then throws in “I was delusional by now”……completely contradictory. She expresses shock after she is outed and the doctor tells her she was Bipolar. She makes much about how shocked she was to see Hypersexuality and risky sex as symptoms of Bipolar….and now “everything can be understood as behavior of the disease”. Much earlier in the book she say if she knew she was Bipolar she NEVER would have begun the sexual adventures. Well, she had been diagnosed as Bipolar, knew the symptoms and been an inpatient treated for 2 weeks………but……another contradiction takes place……while the daughter and husband were home she did not go home but “took on” (in) more of her old clients from Vegas. It is not clear when the escorting finally ceased. But the effect this book will have on her daughter going forward will be as if it never did. To release this book is the most narcissistic act yet ……of many,many, many ones throughout the book and her life. This book is a despicable act inflicted upon her own child……so she can put out her rationalization that it wasn’t Suzy, it was Kelly! This was simply and still is bad behavior from start to, no doubt, the future. M. Kozin

  7. This interview provides far better insight into her struggles than the 100s of pages in the book. I did not like the book at all. I think it did her and all she is trying to achieve by publishing it a disservice.

  8. A generous donation from book sales, to those suffering from mental illness, would be like a gift sent from heaven, and show the world that all is not empty words.

  9. I was a pretty high-level high school/college runner when Suzy was in college and early in her professional running career. She was a star. Beautiful, fast. . . and won. I can only relate to what she must have been feeling based on the fact that I put way too much pressure on myself even in local dual meets. I can’t imagine the type of pressure Suzy felt. I read her book and am glad to see she is doing better now. Most people make decisions they regret, even without mental illness driving them, and I am really glad Suzy is getting the help she needs to help her live a happy life.

  10. I really enjoyed this interview! Suzy’s no-nonsense approach to her past is refreshing, and left me feeling good about advocating for myself when I’m in a position of vulnerability. And yeah for running helping keep her illness at bay! Running is the best medicine!