Five Stars Speak Up About Mental Illness
If you follow us on Instagram (@findmywellbeing), you’re probably already aware of our new Mental Health Warriors series -- our recognition of leaders in television and film who are speaking up about the importance of mental health. To celebrate May’s Mental Health Awareness month, we are underscoring mental health as a priority for society to be functioning at its best. Today, we’re diving deeper into some of our favorite stories from our beloved stars.
We all loved Kristen Bell’s Funny or Die love song to her therapist. Kirsten has long been open to sharing her experiences with anxiety and depression. Though this video plays on some therapy stereotypes, it also highlights some themes we can relate to. Kristen sings about the importance of self-care, needing someone who will always listen, and the ever-relatable feeling of wanting to be friends with your therapist.
We were all inspired by gymnast Simone Biles during the 2016 Olympics. Just when we thought we couldn't love her any more, when her medical records were hacked and a list of the medications she takes were shared, she used the opportunity and platform to speak about her longtime ADHD diagnosis. By speaking out, she showed that taking medications doesn't make her less than and proactively addressing her health is what helps her perform her best.
Saturday Night Live’s Pete Davidson spoke about his experiences with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast. His impact has already been palpable: one fan, @chloeanesha, responded on Twitter, “Pete Davidson talking about his BPD and depression on SNL makes me feel like maybe i will make it someday.” Thanks for being someone your fans can look up to, Pete.
Demi Levato, an outspoken advocate for mental healthcare, spoke about her father’s struggle with alcoholism and her ongoing eating disorder, bipolar disorder, and suicidal thoughts, both in her music and her interviews. She's even incorporated her mental health story into her tours by offering free therapy sessions through partnerships in the cities she performs in.
The NBA has been on our radar recently, between DeMar DeRozan tweeting about his depression and anxiety, Kevin Love speaking out about his anxiety attacks, and Kelly Oubre Jr. following suit by sharing about his own mental health journey. We love these star athletes, and the NBA recognizes just how important their mental health is to their ability to perform at their best. The NBA announced it will be hiring a director of mental health and wellness. Some teams are also bringing mental healthcare specialists on board. Professional basketball is a great place to start. A call to other industries: It’s time to follow the NBA’s lead.
We look up to celebrities in so many ways. At the end of the day, they are human, like us. And mental health obstacles impact so many of us. Thank you to these stars for furthering the conversation and #breakingthestigma.