According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, 49% of people—yes, almost half—who have felt symptoms of depression and anxiety never seek medical help. In any given year, one in five Canadians will experience a mental-health problem, and by age 40, about 50% of the population will have or have had a mental illness.
So why aren’t we talking about this more? The taboo around speaking openly about mental illness still exists, although campaigns like Bell Let’s Talk and Opening Minds (established by the Mental Heath Commission of Canada) are working to eradicate it.
Celebs who get candid about their own mental-health struggles also help chip away at the stigma. From Selena Gomez talking about her mental-health breaking point to Kanye West opening up about being diagnosed as bipolar, here are the 20-plus figures who have shared their own deeply personal experiences in the name of raising awareness, eliminating stigma and helping us all feel a little less alone.
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So humbled to have been part of the incredible McLean Hospital’s Annual Dinner and was honored to be able to share a bit of my story. Thank you Dr. Rauch for inviting me and spending time speaking with me about mental health. And thank you to all the amazing staff at McLean. And a huge thank you to David O Russell for connecting me with these amazing humans. These are the moments where I am so grateful for the platform God has given me. ❤️
Almost a year after announcing that she was taking a break from social media, Selena Gomez spoke about her reason for getting help when it comes to her mental health. At a dinner held by the McLean Hospital—a psychiatric hospital affiliated with Harvard University—in Boston on September 19, Gomez shared her experience of hitting her breaking point and finally reaching out for help.
“It felt like all of my pain and anxiety washed over me all at once, and it was one of the scariest moments of my life,” she said. “I sought support, and the doctors were able to give me a clear diagnosis. The moment I received that information, I actually felt equal parts terrified and relieved—terrified, obviously, because the veil was lifted, but relieved I finally had the knowledge of why I had suffered for so many years from depression and anxiety. I’ve never had full answers, awareness or anything about this condition. So I began to face it head on.”
If you or someone you know is struggling, contact Crisis Services Canada at 1-833-456-4566, find a 24/7 Crisis Centre via the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention or reach out to a resource in your province:
British Columbia: Province-Wide Mental Health Support Line (24/7 hotline: 310-6789) | Alberta: Distress Centre Calgary (24/7 hotline: 403-266-4357) | Saskatchewan: Prince Albert Mobile Crisis Unit (24/7 hotline: 306-764-1011) | Manitoba: Manitoba Reason to Live (24/7 hotline: 1-877-435-7170) | Ontario: Connex Ontario (24/7 hotline: 1-866-531-2600) | Quebec: The Quebec Association for Suicide Prevention (24/7 hotline: 866-277-3553) | New Brunswick: Chimo Helpline (24/7 hotline: 450-4357) | Nova Scotia: Mental Health Mobile Crisis Team (24/7 hotline: 1-888-429-8167) | Prince Edward Island: Island Helpline (24/7 hotline: 1-800-218-2885) | Newfoundland: Mental Health Crisis Line (24/7 hotline: 1-888-737-4668) | Northwest Territories: NWT Help Line (24/7 hotline: 1-800-661-0844)
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