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How a surprising celebrity is helping Ariana Grande with her mental health journey

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Hannah-Rose Yee
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The singer has received advice and assistance from Jim Carrey, who has been open about his own struggles with depression.

For the past few years Ariana Grande has made it her mission to talk openly about her mental health.

Since the bombings during her 2017 arena concert in Manchester, Grande has been a vocal and outspoken advocate for mental health awareness and, in particular, anxiety disorders, PTSD and depression.

This week, Grande used Instagram stories to share a quote from the actor Jim Carrey on the subject of depression, prompted by the gruelling reality of touring and headlining Coachella. (Grande described the experience of putting on a concert as “hell”.) 

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“Depression is your body saying ‘I don’t want to be this character anymore,” Carrey has said. “You should think of the word ‘depressed’ as ‘deep rest’. Your body needs to be depressed. It needs deep rest from the character that you’ve been trying to play.” 

Ariana Grande

Grande shared the quote and, later, an image of the comedian with the caption ‘I love you so much’. The singer has been a fan of Carrey’s since she was a child. (Her first username on AIM was ‘jimcarreyfan42’). Back then, she was enamoured of his performances in movies like Ace Ventura and The Mask, but now Grande is increasingly turning to Carrey for wisdom on the subject of mental health.

Carrey responded to Grande’s post with gratitude. “I read your lovely mention of me and things I’ve said about depression,” he wrote on Twitter. “A brilliant teacher and friend, Jeff Foster, was OG on the ‘deep rest’ concept. I admire your openness. I wish you freedom and peace. I feel blessed to have such a gifted admirer. Happy Easter!” 

Grande replied: “Thank u so much for your kindness. I don’t think you understand how much I adore u or what u mean to me. Thank u for taking the time to share this w me. You are such an inspiration. I can’t wait to tattoo this tweet to my forehead. Sending you lots of love and all things happy.”

Just as how Grande has used her platform to speak openly about anxiety, depression and PTSD, so too has Carrey been open in public forums about his own mental health struggles.

The 55-year-old actor has previously talked about how his storied career in comedy and Hollywood exacerbated his depression. Today, he steers clear of anything that alters his mood, including alcohol, drugs and caffeine, and he says that no longer feels depression.

“People talk about depression all the time,” he has said. “The difference between depression and sadness is sadness is just from happenstance – whatever happened or didn’t happen for you, or grief, or whatever it is… I have no depression in my life whatsoever – literally none. I have sadness, and joy, and elation, and satisfaction, and gratitude beyond belief. But all of it is weather, and it just spins around the planet. It doesn’t sit on me long enough to kill me. It’s just ideas.” 

Images: Getty 

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Hannah-Rose Yee

Hannah-Rose Yee is a writer, podcaster and recent Australian transplant in London. You can find her on the internet talking about pop culture, food and travel.

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