My hopes for this article are that you feel comfortable speaking up about your depression. Even celebrities are faced with the significant pressures of life and disappointment. Healing yourself is extremely important. Not all depression is temporary. Life has a way of throwing us curve ball after curve ball. Sometimes you don’t have time to get over one thing before another thing happens.
For those who suffer from clinical depression, I know it is an uphill battle to cope with life and be in a constant battle with overcoming depression. Trust me, you’re not alone at all. Your health and happiness are worth working towards daily if need be.
“There are moments where you shouldn’t fake it until you make it and that is when it comes to your mental health. “
Here is a list of 40 celebrities who suffer from depression and anxiety:
- Kanye West: Kanye reportedly felt suicidal after his mother’s death in 2007.
- Nicki Minaj: In a 2011 Cosmo article, Nicki opened up about the depression she felt when she first started out as a performer and had to deal with constant disappointment.
- Wayne Brady: According to CNN, Depression was a factor when Brady’s marriage ended in 2006, but it wasn’t until his 42nd birthday in June that Brady knew he needed to seek help.
4. Lady Gaga revealed her difficulties in dealing with depression (and how she learned to overcome it) in Harper’s Bazaar.
5. Ellen DeGeneres Ellen reportedly experienced a deep depression after her show on ABC got canceled in 1998.
6. Miley Cyrus talked about her ongoing battle against depression in an Elle article this past April.
7. His 2007 suicide attempt devastated his friends, family, and fans. Though Owen Wilson’s screen persona was that of a loopy, lovable surfer dude, offscreen he was a complex man who, as People reported at the time, has dealt with addiction issues and relationship problems, notably his then break up with actress Kate Hudson.
8. In an interview on YouTube’s Off-Camera Show, Kristen Bell told Sam Jones she takes medication for depression and anxiety.
9. Brad Pitt felt depressed early on in his acting career and attributes a trip to Casablanca to helping him overcome his depression.
10. Angelina Jolie slipped into a depression in 2008 after tragedy struck in her family.
11. Sarah Silverman said in Glamour that she herself has struggled with depression, and takes small doses of Zoloft (sertraline) to maintain her mental health without losing the highs and lows that fuel her creativity. “I wouldn’t wish depression on anyone,” Silverman said. “But if you ever experience it, or are experiencing it right now, just know that on the other side, the little joys in life will be that much sweeter.”
12. The Mad Men actor, Jon Hamm, said that he found antidepressants and therapy helpful in working through his depression.
13. Cara Delevingne’s star rose, she also struggled with depression, she says. At 15, she hit “a massive wave of depression, anxiety, and self-hatred,” she told Vogue this summer. She engaged in the harmful behavior, took psychotropic medications, and saw therapists — none of whom, she said, were especially helpful.
16. The former Spice Girl, Mel C., admitted to having depression and an eating disorder in the past.
17. Kirsten Dunst described the impossible emotional standards of being an actor dealing with depression.
18. After breaking up with Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder went into a deep depression and felt as though she wasn’t entitled to her feelings because of her success as an actor.
19. J.K. Rowling Depression engulfed her, she admitted in a 2012 interview in The Guardian. She even used her dark, suicidal thoughts as the inspiration for the Dementors, the hooded creatures that feed off human — and wizard — happiness.
20. Kerry Washington: “I used food as a way to cope — it was my best friend,” she recalled. She’d eat until she sometimes passed out, then would head to the gym to exercise for hours on end. “Keeping my behavior secret was painful and isolating. There was a lot of guilt and shame,” she told the interviewer. Luckily, her dance teacher intervened, and Washington began years of therapy.
21. Trevor Noah and Neal Brennan: Brennan says he’s had depression for a long time and has tried many different depression treatments, including ketamine, about five different medications, and transcranial magnetic stimulation, a non-invasive procedure that stimulates the brain’s nerve cells with short magnetic pulses. Brennan says that TMS treatment was most effective for him.
22 “You know what’s funny about it [depression] is people go, if you’re depressed you can’t smile, if you’re depressed you can’t tell jokes, but as comedians, that’s like the one thing most comedians share is that monkey on the back of the depression,” Noah says.
23. The former Destiny’s Child member, Michelle Williams, encourages everyone with depression to seek help.
24. It wasn’t until Gwyneth Paltrow’s second child that she started to feel the effects of postpartum depression.
25. The singer, Sheryl Crow, admitted to having thought about suicide.
26. In 2005, Brooke Shields spoke out against Tom Cruise’s interview with Matt Lauer, where he was dismissive of Shields’ postpartum depression.
27. Ashley Judd: In her 2011 memoir, All That Is Bitter & Sweet she revealed that she considered suicide as a sixth-grader, and in 2006 underwent 42 days in a rehab clinic for depression. “I would have died without it,” she told People in April 2011. Reconciling with estranged family members and helping those less fortunate through charity work has helped Judd regain perspective and make peace with her past.
28. Heath Ledger: After his death, People reported that sources spoke of his depression and reckless behavior after his breakup with actress Michelle Williams, the mother of his then 2-year-old daughter.
29. David Arquette soon checked himself into a rehab center to address his alcohol abuse and depression. In April 2011, Arquette acknowledged his strange behavior, saying he had been sober for more than 100 days and was now more in touch with his emotions.
30. In 2011 actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, 41, revealed that she has bipolar II disorder, which causes severe depression. (People with bipolar II often don’t have the extreme “up” of mania, which is a staple of bipolar I.)
31. Paige Hemmis: As host of ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” from 2004 to 2009, Hemmis was bubbly, compassionate, and always smiling for the camera. But in September 2009, the carpenter and entrepreneur opened up to People about her ongoing struggle with depression that had caused crying fits, eating binges, and insomnia early on in the show’s run.
32. Olympic freestyle skier Jeret “Speedy” Peterson lost his long-time battle with depression in 2011 when he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at age 29.
33. Andre Waters: Former NFL player Andre Waters shocked family and friends in November 2006 when he took his own life at age 44. Posthumous studies suggest he’d been suffering from brain damage and depression, both related to concussions sustained during football games.
34. Postpartum depression isn’t reserved for women who physically give birth to their children. After Tony-winning Broadway actress Winokur’s son was born via surrogate in 2008, she felt stressed and overwhelmed. In fact, surrogacy can sometimes make postpartum anxiety or guilt even worse, Marissa Winokur’s doctor told People in December 2010. “I didn’t feel a connection with Zev,” Winokur said.
35. Winning a gold medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games forced swimmer Amanda Beard, then only 14, to grow up fast. But when a growth spurt and 25-pound weight gain caused Beard’s self-esteem to take a dive, the self-proclaimed perfectionist turned to bulimia and cutting herself into an outlet for her pain and depression.
36. Princess Diana suffered from postpartum depression as well as an eating disorder. According to the BBC, her unhappiness worsened as her marriage fell apart, and she received little emotional support from her new family.
37. Tipper Gore: “I know how important good mental health care can be because I personally benefited from it,” wrote Gore, the now-estranged wife of Al Gore, in a 1999 USA Today opinion piece. In the article, Gore revealed that she had sought depression treatment years before after her son had a near-fatal accident. She took medication for some time. “When you get to this point,” she said in an interview, “you just can’t will your way out of that or pray your way out of that or pull yourself up by the bootstraps out of that. You really have to go and get help, and I did.”
38. Andrew Koenig: The actor best known for his role as “Boner” on the 1990s sitcom “Growing Pains” battled depression for most of his life. That’s what Koenig’s father told reporters in February 2010, shortly after Koenig took his own life. According to Koenig’s sister, he had recently stopped taking his medication. Koenig’s parents have been outspoken about their son’s depression, hoping that their message may be able to reach others who are also considering suicide.
39. Kendra Wilkinson: Former Playboy Playmate and reality TV star Wilkinson’s life changed dramatically after she had a baby at 24. “I felt like I had to be a different person,” Wilkinson told People. “I was doing whatever I could for the baby, but I lost myself and it was really frustrating.”Pressure to regain her famous figure didn’t help, and she was depressed for some time. Two years later, happy and healthy again, Wilkinson spoke openly about her postpartum depression, saying that it affects many women and that “it needs to be talked about.”
40. Beyonce Knowles: According to CBSNews, Beyoncé says that in real life, she is shy and vulnerable and suffered a bout of depression when her former group, Destiny’s Child, disbanded. “I didn’t eat,” she said. “I stayed in my room. I was in a really bad place in life, going through that lonely period: ‘Who am I? Who are my friends?’ My life changed.”