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After opening up to the Express about his own battle with depression, as well as his mother’s suicide attempt 30 years ago, Johnson told his fans on Twitter they shouldn’t be afraid to open up if they’re struggling with similar issues.
“We all go thru the sludge/shit and depression never discriminates,” he wrote Sunday evening. “Took me a long time to realize it but the key is to not be afraid to open up. Especially us dudes have a tendency to keep it in. You’re not alone.”
Got tons of responses to this. Thank you. We all go thru the sludge/shit and depression never discriminates. Took me a long time to realize it but the key is to not be afraid to open up. Especially us dudes have a tendency to keep it in. You’re not alone— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) April 2, 2018
In his interview with the Express, the 45-year-old actor described his fight with depression, saying he didn’t want to leave his home and that he cried constantly. The period came in the wake of a tough breakup coupled with getting let go from the Canadian Football League, crushing his dream of playing football professionally.
Johnson also described witnessing his own mother attempt to commit suicide after they were evicted from their apartment when he was just 15 and how he could have gone down the same path if he hadn’t gotten help.
“We both healed but we’ve always got to do our best to pay attention when other people are in pain,” he said. “We have to help them through it and remind them they are not alone.”
On Twitter, fans wrote to Johnson and thanked him for sharing his story.
I'm very glad you choose to share this story, raise awareness, & help destigmatize discussions on mental health. I have struggled with depression my whole life and last year sought out and received tremendous assistance in a mental health hospitalization program. Thanks for this.— Jared Petty (@pettycommajared) April 2, 2018
Thanks for sharing your story - I am currently off work myself trying to get better so that I can get back to being myself again. It's been a long, hard road so far but I'm getting there, bit by bit. ❤️— Christine Langdon (@CJLangdon0574) April 2, 2018
Lost a past student to suicide this week. No one will ever understand what one is going through internally. Be kind to one another. Listen more. Thanks for opening up. This is why you are the man!!— Jennifer Drummond (@VegasJen13) April 2, 2018
My mom’s suicide attempt is, to this day, the most traumatizing experience I’ve ever had. I reached the lowest point of my life after that. But because of that, I’ll always remember where the ground is and how far up I’ve come. Thank you for sharing your story. 🙏🏻💜— Pamela Horton (@PamelaHorton13) April 2, 2018
This wasn’t the first time Johnson opened up about his battle. Two months ago, he wrote on Instagram about his mother’s suicide attempt after he filmed a scene for TV series Ballers, that focused on a character’s suicide.
“My mom tried to check out when I was 15. She got outta the car on Interstate 65 in Nashville and walked into oncoming traffic,” he wrote. “Big rigs and cars swerving outta the way not to hit her. I grabbed her and pulled her back on the gravel shoulder of the road. What’s crazy about that suicide attempt is to this day, she has no recollection of it whatsoever. Probably best she doesn’t.”
Not your typical scene on our comedy #ballers, as I cracked a beer open toasting my character’s brother, William who committed suicide. Got me thinkin’ though bout how many of us have been affected by suicide of our friends, family. Struggle and pain is real. We’ve all been there on some level or another. My mom tried to check out when I was 15. She got outta the car on Interstate 65 in Nashville and walked into oncoming traffic. Big rigs and cars swerving outta the way not to hit her. I grabbed her and pulled her back on the gravel shoulder of the road. What’s crazy about that suicide attempt is to this day, she has no recollection of it whatsoever. Probably best she doesn’t. Shits of a scene to shoot - didn’t like it - but it did reminder that we always gotta do our best to really pay attention when people are in pain. Help ‘em thru it, get ‘em talkin’ about the struggle and remind ‘em that they’re not alone. We got lucky that day when I was 15 and that ain’t always the case.
A post shared by therock (@therock) on
Johnson said he learned through that experience the importance of paying attention to loved ones when they are struggling with something.
“Shits of a scene to shoot – didn’t like it – but it did reminder that we always gotta do our best to really pay attention when people are in pain,” he said. “Help ‘em thru it, get ‘em talkin’ about the struggle and remind ‘em that they’re not alone. We got lucky that day when I was 15 and that ain’t always the case.”
H/T Daily Edge
Tess Cagle is a reporter who focuses on politics, lifestyle, and streaming entertainment. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Texas Monthly, the Austin American-Statesman, Damn Joan, and Community Impact Newspaper. She’s also a portrait, events, and live music photographer in Central Texas.