Depression is a seriously crippling condition, because it warps every aspect of your life. When you are constantly psychologically tired and unhappy, it also translates into physical tiredness which stops in their tracks all the efforts you might have otherwise made on a daily basis.
And the biggest problem is that it is a self-feeding problem. Because you are depressed, you get all the negative consequences, which in turn make you even more depressed and so forth. Which is why getting out of depression can be very difficult, requiring at least the support of family and friends, if not professional help.
Still, it is possible to get out of it and back to a happy, productive life. As the following 6 celebrities that suffered from depression demonstrate. And consider that in their case, they didn’t even have the privacy and peace the rest of us do, as the eyes of the world are constantly upon them.
1. Angelina Jolie
Angelina got severely depressed in 2007 when her mother died. And she later shared that in that period she couldn’t focus on anything else except negative thoughts. Fortunately (and as a positive personal example to others) she found the solution herself, by deciding to accept the role in “Wanted”, which included a lot of stunts and ergo, lots of physical activity, which is one sure way to battle depression.
2. Gwyneth Paltrow
An example of how depression can sometimes manifest itself unexpectedly, Gwyneth Paltrow’s episode came after the birth of her son, Moses, in 2006. And the way this post-partum form of depression affected her was that she couldn’t access her emotions at all, being practically numb like “a zombie”, in her own words.
3. Kylie Minogue
Other times, depression can be a personally traumatic experience, as was Kylie’s case when she succumbed to it after being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005. Taking time-off from work because of the needed surgery and chemotherapy only made things worse as it kept her mind free to obsess on the false perception that she will not be “normal” after her surgery anymore. Of course, she finally realized this was not so and got herself back together by creating a “new normal”, emerging stronger.
4. Catherine Zeta Jones
An image of class, strength and stability (including her long-term relationship with Michael Douglas), Catherine Zeta Jones placed herself in hospital care in 2011 for bipolar disorder (a mental affliction in which one oscillates between two states one being depression and the other mania). Key words being placed herself in the care of professionals. It appears stress was the cause as is also confirmed by some scientific opinions.
5. Russell Brand
Despite being a successful “funny man” (read stand-up comedian), actor and activist now, Brand’s early years were marked by over-eating, abusing alcohol, taking drugs and even cutting himself, as he tried to cope with an absent father figure and his own sense of inadequacy and isolation. He was diagnosed with manic depression. But he managed to turn his thoughts to humor, focus on that, ignore those who tried to bring him down and succeeded in turning his life completely around.
6. Jim Carrey
Another successful comedian and a legend of the genre, no one would expect Jim Carrey to be anything else but the raw energy recipient we see him as in most of his movies. But he was severely depressed after his second divorce (which emphasized the first as well), because depression can also be a need for someone else, not necessarily some internal lack or the death of a loved one.
As a consequence, he was put on Prozac (powerful psychiatric drug), which he took for “a long time”, as he says. But he realized that that is a crutch and he can’t keep relying on it forever, so he found the courage to part ways with it. Jim describes a healthy diet, supplements and being active as the key helpers he’s had to get back to a fulfilling existence when he stopped relying on Prozac.