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Eight Celebrities Who Have Been Refreshingly Honest About Their Mental Health

Eight Celebrities Who Have Been Refreshingly Honest About Their Mental Health

Conversations surrounding the importance of mental health have slowly crept into the spotlight in recent years. Part of this is due to a better understanding of what mental health exactly is, and part of this is because more and more people are opening up about their personal experiences with mental health.

That includes some of our most prominent celebrities, who are using their platforms to do more than promote their selfies. Whether it’s brought up on social media or in an interview, here’s 10 celebrities who are finding their own ways to elevate the mental health conversation.

Kumail Nanjiani

“This thing had become too much in my head… I’m like, ‘OK, this is going to be the coming out party, I’ve worked so hard for this.’ It was really, really hard, and that was when I was like, ‘This is unfair to me, [and] it’s unfair to [my wife] Emily. I can’t approach my work this way anymore. Some s*** has got to change.’ So very intentionally, I did start counseling.”

Earlier this week on an appearance on the “Inside of You With Michael Rosenbaum” podcast, actor Kumail Nanjiani revealed he started attending therapy after seeing negative reviews of his movie, Eternals, in 2021. Years later, he admits there’s still work do be done but therapy has been essential in keeping his mental health in tact.

Dax Shepherd

Photo: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS ©2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.

“The other thing I think that happened in my life which is significant is that I joined a 12-step program 18 years ago to get sober. I got a ton of practice talking about my shortcomings, my failures, my fears. It’s a unique experience because it was met always with understanding, no judgment, compassion, [and] unity. I don’t know how you could get those hours of practice without that.”

Along with his wife Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard has been a long-time vocal advocate for mental health, and uses his podcast “The Armchair Expert” to dive deeper into issues people face in their daily life. The actor has been open about his struggles with alcohol addiction, even being vulnerable about enrolling in a substance abuse program and navigating a recent relapse.

Kerry Washington

Photo: Gail Schulman/CBS ©2023 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

“The first thing that put me on my knees, the first time that I actually got on my knees and prayed to some power greater than myself to say, ‘I can’t do this, I need some help’ was with my eating disorder.”

In her memoir, Thicker Than Water, actress Kerry Washington opened up for the first time about her battle with eating disorders and suicidal ideation. Speaking on Good Morning America with Robin Roberts, Washington revealed that she turned to God to help her find a way out of her struggle.

Billie Eilish

“Kids use my songs as a hug. Songs about being depressed or suicidal or completely just against-yourself—some adults think that’s bad, but I feel that seeing that someone else feels just as horrible as you do is a comfort. It’s a good feeling.”

Eilish is known by most of the world for her exciting and catchy pop songs, but her fans know her for her honest and raw conversations about her struggles with her mental health. From body dysmorphia to depression to even Tourette syndrome, Eilish doesn’t shy away from the fact that life isn’t always picture perfect.

Justin Bieber

“I just would encourage people, like, ‘Hey, if you’re feeling lonely, talk about it. Say it out loud.’ There’s a freedom in that. I could have avoided a lot of pain.”

Bieber has placed a massive focus on his mental health in recent years, opening up about his battle with anxiety and drug addiction. And now he’s encouraging fans to get the help they need. On his last tour, Bieber partnered with numerous organizations that focus in a variety of topics including mental health. He eventually cancelled his tour after a few months to focus on his own mental health.

Sophie Turner

“I’ve suffered with depression for about five or six years now. The biggest challenge for me: Getting out of bed and getting out of the house — and like, learning to love yourself.”

The Games of Thrones actress shared on Dr. Phil’s podcast that she struggled with anxiety and depression regarding her appearance while she was filming the hit HBO show. Through therapy and medication, Turner has eventually grown to a place where she has learned to love herself and she hopes by sharing her story others can do the same.

Selena Gomez

“My self-esteem was shot. I was depressed, anxious. I started to have panic attacks right before getting on stage, or right after leaving the stage.” 

The singer/actress/entrepreneur is no stranger to stress. After years of struggling with anxiety and depression, Gomez opened up about her battles, including how quitting social media helps alleviate her stress. Last year, Gomez launched Wondermind, an online therapy resource to help others get the information and tools they need. And in 2022, she released a documentary all about her mental health journey on Apple TV+, Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

“I reached a point where I didn’t want to do a thing or go anywhere. I was crying constantly.”

There’s no doubt that Johnson has spent some time working on his physical health, but in 2018, the wrestler-turned-actor shared that he’s put a lot of work into his mental health, too. Johnson shared that he’s battled with depression for years and he’s worked with his mother, who also struggles with depression, to get the help he needs.

© 2023 RELEVANT Media Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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