My Take: A concerned evangelical's open letter to Charlie Sheen
March 25th, 2011
09:23 AM ET

My Take: A concerned evangelical's open letter to Charlie Sheen

Editor's Note: Margaret Feinberg is an international speaker and author of "Scouting the Divine" and "The Organic God." Follow her on Twitter.

By Margaret Feinberg, Special to CNN

Dear Charlie,

As one of your 3 million Twitter followers, I’ve given you the ability to speak into my life in 140 characters or less, so I figure the least I can do is return the favor (with a few extra characters). You’ve been on quite a ride: setting a new Twitterlicious record for bagging the most followers in 24 hours, reducing "Two and a Half Men" to reruns on Monday nights, and displaying behavior that defies any sense of rational behavior (even among warlocks).

“Charlie Sheen LIVE: My Violent Torpedo of Truth” tour selling out in just 18 minutes, Brooke Mueller dropping the restraining order, and a big wet kiss from Jimmy Kimmel may make you feel like a #winner, but as a well-meaning fan, I’m asking you to put away the Tiger Blood T-shirts and pull back from the Hollywood media blitz long enough to consider the following:

No. 1: Though “Yes” people are always more fun to surround yourself with, maybe it’s time to make room for people who will challenge your thinking and behavior. Maybe you need some time with people who don’t give a rat’s tail that you’re Charlie Sheen.

I have two recommendations: The first is a guy by the name of Rob Bell. He’s been stirring up a bit of controversy talking about who or what is really a #winner in his new book, "Love Wins." A lot of people don’t know what to think about Bell or his nebulous beliefs, but I guarantee grabbing a cup of coffee with him will make you think about yourself and life differently.

My second recommendation is someone named Franklin Graham. Yep, his dad is named Billy. But before you roll your eyes, Franklin knows a thing or two about booze and babes from his youth. His story just might surprise you. Plus, he’s doing a whole lot of good through an organization called Samaritan’s Purse. Franklin won’t care that you’re Charlie; he’ll only care that you’re a human being, and you need more people in your life like that.

No. 2: You need some more #losers in your life. As television’s highest paid actor (nearly $2 million an episode), we can all see how you feel like a “a total rock star from Mars” and that you are riding the high of being “on a drug ... called Charlie Sheen.” The porn stars and the private jets make you feel like a #winner, but maybe it’s time to hang with some #losers, people who have lost everything.

On the other side of the world, more than half a million people have lost loved ones, everything they own, or a sense of life as they know it. They go to bed at night and wake up in the morning under the shadows of nuclear disaster and uncertainty. Maybe it’s time to take a ride to Japan sans the goddesses and remember that all the wealth, fame and celebrity status you’ve been given could be used to help others in need.

Please don’t just write a check. Look into their eyes. Listen to their stories. The reality check will trump anything you’ve experienced in rehab.

No. 3: You’re selling out too cheap. The erratic behavior and incoherent ramblings have left everyone wondering when you’re going to crash. Comparisons to Anna Nicole Smith abound. Other than those who purchased seats for your Violent Torpedo Tour, everyone else is being given free tickets to a crash and burn party.

In case no one has told you, you’re more valuable than that. Don’t give them the pleasure. Instead of opting for the crash, pull up, Charlie, pull up. Embrace redemption — it’s never too late to turn things around and inspire us all with goodness rather than just another implosion.

No. 4: You have five kids who need you around. Even if you dismiss every argument, I have some names you can’t dismiss so easily: Cassandra, Sam, Lola, Max and Bob. Some say any media attention is good media attention, but I can’t help but wonder what your kids will think and feel when they Google your name years from now.

Your children need a loving, responsible father, which you can choose to be — and maybe that’s the best wake-up call of all. If you won’t come to your senses for any other reason, do it for them.

As for the rest of us fans, we want you back, Charlie, on your “A” game as an actor, and as a healthy dad. We’re rooting for you!

One of your fans,


The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Margaret Feinberg

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Celebrity • Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (942 Responses)
  1. Billy

    Did you ever stop to think that it may be a little easier for Sheen to 'pull up' if he didn't have three million people following him on twitter and validating his kick ass existance?

    March 25, 2011 at 11:00 am |
  2. HRolle

    Charlie Sheen is too busy winning to listen to this garbage. Keep doing your thing bro!

    March 25, 2011 at 11:00 am |
  3. marin8

    Good advice but could of done without the reference to Bob Graham. Ruined what could have been nicely written, objective piece.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:59 am |
  4. isabel

    He's a grown man , he knows what he's doing . Leave him alone , and he will wake up one day , i just hope he does before it's too late.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:58 am |
  5. Head Diva In Charge

    I 100% agree with everything this letter says. But we must remember one very important fact – Charlie is still #winning and making money and most of us are struggling at our day jobs. It's the public that is making this possible. And while I love a train wreck, even I am not buying a ticket to his "tour" (using that term loosely). If you REALLY want him to go away and do the right thing, then EVERYONE has to ban together and say NO MORE CHARLIE. There is a better chance of Palin becoming president then that happening. Good luck Carlos, your going to need it.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:56 am |
  6. The Bobinator

    Charlie Sheen is more entertaining being himself, of course, assuming this isn't a huge act to sell a new reality TV show, then most people are trying to be funny.

    If Charlie Sheen is becoming a train wreck, I say good. It'll be entertaining.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:53 am |
  7. Dana

    Well written! It's just to bad that your advice will fall on def ears. He has surrounded himself with losers who praise him because he is famous and they want a piece of the pie. He's a train wreck and everyone is watching him crash and burn! He needs to go away and pull himself together. We're tired of hearing his ridiculous rants. Go away Charlie, go away!! Come back when you have something good and positive to offer the world.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:53 am |
  8. doctore0

    Noooo Charlie, please don't come back.
    Thank you.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:45 am |
  9. The Bobinator

    I love it when people are too stupid to see why writing a letter to someone they don't know giving them advice on a problem they were informed about through third parties is useless.

    Oh, sorry.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:45 am |
    • SeanNJ

      Dear The Bobinator,

      As someone who is a fan of your postings in this blog, I'm compelled...nay...obligated...nay...perfectly correct in pointing out exactly what you're doing wrong with your life and the best way to fix those things, since, clearly, there is no one else capable of doing it and my ability to likewise post in this blog and to write what might be consided the longest run-on sentence ever makes me the only person qualified to point out your short-comings.

      March 25, 2011 at 11:05 am |
  10. ZenMan

    Charlie Sheen is going down swinging, and it is not pretty. Watching him terrifies me. The best outcome for him is that he hits a bottom soon and hits it hard without anyone getting killed. He has so many enablers around him that I think a bottom may be so far off, unfortunately. I'm afraid the bottom he may face in reality will be so severe because of his situation that tragedy is almost a certainty. I pray for him and his family.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:44 am |
  11. Sunny


    March 25, 2011 at 10:34 am |
  12. jm999

    The guy is 45 years old for crying out loud. I think he knows what his priorities are at this point. They aren't his kids or his "fans". No blog post from some no-name CNN writer is going to change them. He will likely never see this post. I'm sure it was only written with the intention of driving more traffic. Same thing he's doing right now. Trying to get the most attention possible. And you keep feeding the monster. Morons.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:32 am |
  13. Bruce

    Margaret-you are a troll. Bye.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:27 am |
  14. msmotivated

    Nicely written. I wish Charlie the best and hope that he does get back on his A game. I don't enjoy watching people crash and burn.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:20 am |
  15. JR

    Charlie Sheen is only concerned with one thing, Charlie Sheen experiencing some sort of corporal pleasure. He doesn't give a darn about anything else. Not his family relationships, not his children, not even his job nor his fans. He's a child in a man's body.

    Good advice, but he's not going to take it.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:18 am |
  16. David Murphy

    I hope Mr. Sheen gets his life back on track. He is very talented, and has worked hard to build an interesting career.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:16 am |
  17. tallulah13

    I think Charlie Sheen won't listen to the people who know and love him and want to help him, much less a complete stranger. The guy's gone off the rails and seems to be enjoying it. Too bad his kids pay the price.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:09 am |
  18. nyc GAL

    I completely concur with your well written and thoughtful plea...may he find the strength to be there for those children.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:03 am |
  19. Houston.

    Finally someone with a bit of SENSE reaches out to Charlie! I hope he listens.

    March 25, 2011 at 10:00 am |
  20. Humberto Brito Silva

    Great advice. Hopefully Charlie Sheen read them and follow them.

    March 25, 2011 at 9:48 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.