8 People Who Prove Having Depression Doesn’t Make You Lazy
What you think of someone who experiences depression, who do you see?
Is she locked up in her room, shades down, watching soap operas? Is he finishing a carton of ice cream and writing sad poetry in a diary?
Whatever the stereotype, the truth is this: Approximately 6.7 percent of American adults − about 14.8 million people − live with major depression, and about 19 million experience depression in any given one-year period.
But having depression isn’t an indicator of whether or not you will succeed. Millions of Americans aren’t hiding in their rooms. Here are some badass, accomplished individuals, who also happened to have experienced depression.
1. Jon Hamm
In 2010, the “Mad Men” star opened up about his experience with chronic depression. “I did do therapy and antidepressants for a brief period, which helped me,” he told The Observer. This year, Hamm finally won in Emmy for his portrayal of Don Draper, a successful advertising man with a dark past.
2. Amanda Beard
She’s a model, swimmer and seven-time Olympic medalist. She’s a former world-record holder in the 200-meter breaststroke. She made her first Olympic appearance at the age of 14. She’s also experienced depression and lived with an eating disorder.
Her husband Sasha Brown helped the athlete reach out for help. “I always thought if someone saw my true colors, they would just turn away,” Beard told MLive. “He didn’t. He was very loving and supportive.”
Her memoir, “In the Water They Can’t See You Cry,” chronicles her journey with mental health issues.
As one of the youngest CEOs ever to run a Fortune 500 company, Burguieres actually resigned because he feared the stigma around mental health problems, according to PBS. He never used the word “depression” when explaining the situation to his peers, and the cause of his resignation was cited to unspecific “health problems.” Even doctors blamed his experiences on the job or “situational stress.”
“But it really wasn’t just the job, and it wasn’t just stress,” Burguieres told PBS. “I think my major episode was really the culmination of undiagnosed depression, a condition I had been fighting for years.”
He eventually made a full recovery and re-entered corporate life as vice chairman of the Houston Texans.
Author of “IT,” “Carrie,” “The Shining,” 51 other novels and nearly 200 short stories, King has dealt with both depression and addiction. “There were nine months when I was out of gas, depressed,” he told The Guardian. “And despite what some people say, depression is not conducive to good writing or to bad writing,”
5. Kid Cudi
The rapper has been open about his experiences with depression and suicidal thoughts in both interviews and in his music. “I know what that feels like, I know it comes from loneliness, I know it comes from not having self-worth, not loving yourself,” he said about experiencing suicidal thoughts to HipHop DX. In a genre that typically doesn’t address issues of mental health, he’s a two-time Grammy award winner.
The creator of the beloved Harry Potter franchise was actually experiencing depression when she wrote, “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” These dark times manifested themselves in the one of the mystical creatures in her series, Dementors, hooded creatures who feed off happiness.
Model and actor Cara Delevingne experienced depression during her rise to fame. “[In my] external life, I couldn’t be luckier or more blessed,” the 23-year-old said in an interview at the Women in the World summit. “But internal battles were going on. I also felt like I never deserved [the fame]. That I was living someone else’s dream.”
Most recently, Delevingne starred in “Paper Towns.”
8. Sarah Silverman
The comedian recently opened up about depression in a personal essay in Glamour magazine, where she discusses first experiencing the symptoms at age 13. “I went from being the class clown to not being able to see life in that casual way anymore,” the essay reads. “I couldn’t deal with being with my friends, I didn’t go to school for months, and I started having panic attacks.”
She began recovery, got hired as an writer-performer for “Saturday Night Live” at age 22, but relapsed again soon after.
“Since then I’ve lived with depression and learned to control it,” Silverman shared with Glamour, “or at least to ride the waves as best I can.”