The Good Place actress has revealed why she’s made it her mission to change how we view depression.
Kristen Bell has not always been open and honest about her ill mental health. In fact, it was only a few months ago that The Good Place actress made the decision to publicly share that she’d been battling depression and anxiety from a young age.
“When I was 18, my mum sat me down and said ‘Hey look, I suffered from anxiety and depression, so did your grandma. If you ever feel this, here’s what you can do, here are the resources that are available to you,’” she shared on the Today show.
“I had taken advantage of that when I started to feel anxiety and depression, but I didn’t really talk about it because I was feeling the stigma for many, many years.”
Bell continued: “It occurred to me that I was showing this very bubbly, bright persona, and that it was inauthentic because it wasn’t telling the whole story.
“I had a pit in my stomach for almost feeling ashamed that I had hidden it for so long, because it could’ve helped people before if I had talked about it.”
Now, thanks to her husband Dax Shepard’s encouragement, Bell plans to keep on talking about mental health in a bid to destigmatise it.
“This bubbly personality you’re seeing, I take medication to manage,” Bell told The Sunday Times’ Style magazine.
“I know I need it. I’m happier on it, and I don’t give a f**k what people think…”
Around one in four people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year, according to Mind. In England, one in six people report experiencing a mental health problem (such as depression and anxiety) in any given week.
Which is why Bell has made it her mission to change how we all view and discuss mental health.
“There is a stigma surrounding depression that I will shatter before my life is over,” Bell said.
We’re behind you all the way, Bell.
Depression, according to Mind, is a low mood that causes us to feel sad, hopeless, or miserable about life; these feelings last for a long time, and usually affect our everyday life.
Psychological symptoms include:
* Feeling upset or tearful
* Finding no pleasure in life or the things you usually enjoy
* Feeling isolated and unable to relate to others
* Experiencing a sense of unreality
* Finding yourself unable to concentrate
* Feeling hopeless, empty, or numb
Physical symptoms include:
* Losing interest in sex
* Difficulty sleeping, or sleeping too much
* Physical aches and pains with no cause
* Feeling tired all the time
* Moving very slowly
* Having no appetite and losing weight, or eating too much and gaining weight
However, while there are many signs and symptoms, everyone’s experience of depression will vary. As a general rule of thumb, mental health experts advise that you visit your GP if you experience symptoms of depression for most of the day, every day, for more than two weeks.
You can find out more information – including a series of approved self-care tips – on the Mind website.
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