This post deals with sexual assault and violence and might be triggering for some readers.
Marilyn Manson has been in the headlines this week following allegations made by his former partner, Evan Rachel Wood. The actress alleges the shock rocker subjected her to “horrific abuse”.
But if we wind back the clock, Manson has been in the headlines his entire career over a series of dark and disturbing incidents.
He was born Brian Warner in Canton, Ohio, in 1969. His dad Hugh, a Vietnam vet who Manson says had a “violent temper”, was a furniture salesman, while his mum Barbara was a nurse. Both parents were religious – his father Catholic, his mother Episcopal – and he went to a Christian school. He learnt about Revelations, and would have “nightmares” about the Antichrist.
As a child, Manson says he spent a lot of time in hospital, for things such as pneumonia and allergic reactions. He told Rolling Stone that his mother had Munchausen syndrome by proxy, which is when a caregiver induces symptoms of illness in a child.
“I didn’t find out about the Munchausen until later in life, and I’m not sure how far back she had it,” he said. “What I can say is that mental illness runs in the family.”
Years later, when Manson started making money from his music, he says his mother convinced him to have his long earlobes shortened by a plastic surgeon, even though he didn’t want to.
“But that was my mother being the way that she was,” he told Rolling Stone. “It was her suggestion.”
Watch the Mamamia Out Loud team discuss plastic surgery. Post continues after video.
Manson’s mother also told him that when he was eight or nine, an intruder broke into their house and tried to smother him with a pillow. He couldn’t remember the incident, but even now, he can’t go to sleep without the TV on.