Late autumn is a depressive season. Statistics indicates that 65 percent of people are liable to seasonal depression this cold, gloomy time of the year. And for those who suffer from chronic depression, it’s even harder. It is very important to remember that you are not alone and, in fact, you are okay. There are famous people with depression, whose example should inspire you.
Famous people with depression share their experience with us. It may seem that they have everything to avoid the sickness – money, fame, ability to travel to the warmest and most exotic corners of the world at any time. But, as Kirsten Dunst said, “We’re all in the same boat together. Depression is pretty serious and should not be gossiped about.”
Isn’t it weird to see comedians in the list of the famous people with depression? For most of hist life Jim Carrey has suffered from depression. And in time it has reached the point when the actor simply doubted that he can defeat it. He has never kept in a sercret that he was taking undepressants and, in fact, he found a spiritual side in his life. “I rarely drink coffee. I’m very serious about no alcohol, no drugs. Life is too beautiful.” This lifestile is the source of his strength now.
So, it seems that these famous people with depression didn’t regret opening up about the disease. What is really important is that they did open up about this issue, which affects millions over the world. Sometimes people need to hear it from a celebrity to realise that this is a common disease and it’s high time to ask for help.
A famous Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during the World War II was also suffering from severe depression throughout his life. He even named this disorder “black dog”, which only confirms that it was his life’s companion. “I don’t like to stand by the side of a ship and look down into the water. A second’s action would end everything. A few drops of desperation”, he shares his thoughts with his doctor. Churchill was trying to fight the disorder all his life and probably that’s why he “prescribed” himself whiskey with soda, which he was starting to drink every morning, following by the cigar. But these were mildly relieving the constant melancholy and suicidal thoughts.
Vincent van Gogh
The world-famous Dutch artist painted his works of art between the stages of bipolar affective psychosis. But some researches of his works claim that his best paintings were created during manic stages of the disorder. Absent abuse and a dissipated life resulted in rapid changes of stages, there were almost no “in-betweens”. And another severe depression forced van Gogh to commit suicide.
For many years, the world truly believed that Princess Diana’s life is like a real fairytale. But the truth is that Princess of Wales experienced loneliness, lack of understanding from the British Royal Family and depression. One day she even jumped from the stairs on purpose while being pregnant with her first child. “I wanted Charles to hug me and say that he loves me, but all he could do is to pat on the back.” And after the birth of Prince William lady D confessed that she was suffering from postpartum depression.
Is there anybody who didn’t envy this Australian actor before January, 22? At his late 20-ies, he had everything a man could desire: fame, daughter, charm and multiple titles, from “the sexiest man” to even “gay-symbol”.
But fate is a cruel thing. In September 2007, he divorced his wife, Matilda Rose, supposedly because of the drug abuse. He loved Matilda so much that the divorce broke his heart: he started to live the life of a recluse and was suffering from insomnia and allegedly was experiencing depression.
What is more, in one of his last interviews actor said that playing in “The Dark Knight” took all his strength. He wasn’t able to sleep more than couple of hours because he couldn’t stop thinking about filming. Sleeping pills were not helping – in an hour he needed to take one more.
When he was found at his own apartment, he was still alive, but by the time the medics arrived, his heart would stop beating. The sleeping pills were found by his bed. Family members said that it was a tragic accident rather than a suicide.
Charming and positive lady, Gwyneth Paltrow also had to experience the problem of many women – postpartum depression. After the birth of her first daughter Apple she was full of joy and happiness. But in two years after the birth of her second child, son Moses, she felt completely different. “When my son, Moses, came into the world in 2006, I expected to have another period of euphoria following his birth,” Gwyneth Paltrow wrote on her website. “Instead, I was confronted with one of the darkest and most painfully debilitating chapters of my life.” Besides, not so long ago before she lost her father, Bruce Paltrow. This made things even harder.
“I felt like a zombie. I couldn’t access my heart. I couldn’t access my emotions. I couldn’t connect. It was terrible. It was the exact opposite of what had happened when Apple was born. With her, I was on cloud nine. I couldn’t believe it wasn’t the same [after Moses was born].” Gwyneth felt guilty; she said: “I just thought it meant I was a terrible mother and a terrible person.”
The first to notice the problem was her husband, singer-songwriter Chris Martin. It is he who told her that something is wrong with her, and with his support, Gwyneth went to the specialist, while treating herself with acupuncture.
J. K. Rowling
Her first depression came to Joanne when she was just a teenage girl. When she was 15 her mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. It cast the gloom over the life of the family: this disease takes away people’s abilities to speak and move. In 10 years Joanne’s mother passed away. By then she was already almost paralyzed. All the memories about those dark days were too much to bear and Joanne decided to move to sunny Portugal.
There she met her first husband and gave birth to her daughter. But the happiness didn’t last long. Instead of helping the family, careless Jorge Arantes preferred to spend time with his friends. After the divorce, Joanne was a single mother with a one-year-old child. She couldn’t take care of everything by her own and she went back to England, in Edinburgh, closer to her little sister Dianne.
That’s when she turned out to be on the edge of desperation. To deal with all the feelings, she started to write a magical story about the boy, who we all know so well. Harry was given many traits of her own – not very happy childhood, lack of confidence and the sudden luck – talent in sorcery. Joanne confessed that sometimes she had suicidal thoughts. And they were the reason she introduced dementors into the magic world – the creatures that suck human’s happiness.
Everyone knows what happened next. But not everyone is aware of the fact that Rowling undergoes another “trial” – by fame. The writer admits, that she would have never thought that being famous around the world is a huge burden. She thought that she was supposed to deal with everybody’s problems – fans’, publishers’, advertisers’… She felt burnt out. She didn’t know what to do. And the end of Potter world was also a huge shock. She could not stand it any longer and went to the psychotherapist.
Playing a girl in the mental hospital in the “Girl, Interrupted” was a truly personal emotional experience. After splitting with Johnny Depp the actress started to abuse alcohol and to feel anxiety and depression. Describing her state she said “You have good days and bad days, and depression’s something that, you know, is always with you.” One day she fell asleep with a lighted cigarette and the next day she realized it was time to get some professional help.
This woman is one of the most beautiful actresses in the world, she is a loving wife and a mother and the UN goodwill ambassador – this is more than a typical woman is. But depression doesn’t choose. And she is in our list of famous people with depression.
For the first time she faced depression being a little girl – after her parents’ divorced. After that around 20 years old she started using drugs because of the depression and she had suicidal thoughts. And we all thought that she beat up this illness but…
In 2007, her mother passed away after wasting disease and this terrible event triggered another round of suffering from depression. According to her, she couldn’t get rid of harmful thoughts and this condition lasted for months. Filming in “Wanted” helped her to regain the taste of life. She confessed that she wasn’t even able to leave the bed, so she agreed to make a movie in order to become active.
After that, in 2008, she gave birth to the beautiful twins and here it came again – the actress suffered from postpartum depression. She has been staying in bed most of the time. She had little energy and had to force herself to remember to eat because she was still breastfeeding. She cried at the drop of a hat and laughed at inappropriate times. But she survived this dark period of the life and nowadays lives the fullest of it.
The actor has been in a long-drawn battle with acute depression. Only after getting married he went to the psychotherapist and later said: “It affected everything – my family and friends. I was a pain in the arse to have around. I was miserable and self-absorbed. It’s actually selfish to be depressed and not try and do anything about it.”
All his life N. Gogol was suffering from manic-depression. He described it like “my usual periodic disorder during which I remain almost motionless for 2-3 weeks.” There were no meds for depression in XIX century, so the doctor was wrapping the writer into the wet bedsheet while confessor advised keeping to the fast. Despite everything Gogol starved himself for 2 weeks, and when the council of physicians decided to treat, Gogol already lost his consciousness and died in the morning.