When the Show 'Supergirl' Portrayed a Panic Attack

This week’s episode of “Supergirl” focused largely on the emotional problems experienced by the main character, Kara Danvers. For the majority of the show, Danvers is presented as a strong hero who can handle anything physical or emotional. After the departure of her boyfriend Mon El, Kara’s guilt gets the better of her. One of the last scenes from Monday’s episode was Kara having a human panic attack. Being an alien, she believed that she was immune to human struggle. She collapsed to the floor and began violently shaking while crying.

The actors who portray Supergirl and Mon El, Melissa Benoist and Chris Wood, are advocates for the cause “IDontMind,” an organization that seeks to bring those struggling in silence with mental illness to talk freely about their struggles. Both actors have come out in recent months to discuss their struggle with depression and anxiety.

Watching a character adored and looked up to by so many people experiencing a panic attack touched the hearts of viewers across the country. Some came out in public and said that seeing Kara go through such powerful emotion stirred up emotion within themselves.

From the perspective of someone with anxiety, this episode made me smile. Not at first, but looking back after finishing the episode and being blown away by the authenticity of Benoist’s portrayal. Out of all of the panic attacks I have seen portrayed on TV, this was by far the most accurate.

“Supergirl” writers and actors, thank you on behalf of the mental health community and the countless people you touched with your spot-on performance of any everyday part of our lives. It meant so much to me to see that Supergirl, someone who I look up to so much, struggles with the same things I do.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Lead image via Supergirl Facebook

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Anxiety


Please Listen When I Ask You to Turn Off the Weather Channel

Hurricane season. My least favorite time of year. The time when every news outlet is blaring coverage of some name methodically chosen by some scientists who do this for a living, and my parents never turn off that one dreaded channel. The weather channel. Ever since I was very small, natural disasters have been a [...]

11 Scary Movies People With Anxiety Actually Love

While it’s true people with anxiety are known to be the “scaredy cat” type, this stereotype doesn’t always play out. In fact, some people with anxiety like being scared, because it distracts them from the often persistent anxiety they feel in their daily lives. This means around Halloween-time, when some people are looking for less-scary, [...]

Why Dating Is Difficult for Me as Someone With Anxiety and Depression

I believe we are all a little hungry for love. I struggle with depression and anxiety. Sometimes just getting up and getting out of bed and acting like a functional human feels too hard. Because of that, because of my struggles, I have distanced myself from dating and relationships. I don’t have a lot of experience in that world. [...]
young woman sitting among flowers and grass watching sunrise alone

When Anxiety Pushes Your Friends Away

Three years ago, my best friend walked out of my life. Maybe I should rephrase that: Three years ago, my anxiety forced my best friend to walk out of my life. If you had asked me two years ago if I would have forgiven her, I would have probably turned around and slammed a door in your [...]