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8 Celebrities Who Have Gone to Therapy

With the stigma surrounding mental illness and mental health issues in this country, it can be incredibly helpful for influential voices to speak out about the importance of mental health support. In this article, we will share stories of famous people who have gone to therapy and have been vocal about how therapy has helped in their lives.

John Hamm for Chronic Depression

Chronic depression is a common mental health condition, and yet many are afraid to seek treatment for it because of societal stigmas. Depression may often be attributed to "laziness," and rather than telling their loved ones with depression to seek therapy, people will often tell them to "snap out of it".

Popular star of Mad Men John Hamm went on record to share his mental health struggles with major depression after the death of his father. He also shared how medication and therapy helped him manage his symptoms and how a strong support system of family, friends, and other loved ones pulled him through dark times.

Prince Harry on Panic Attacks and Anxiety

Prince Harry has been open about sharing his challenges with anxiety and panic attacks, starting after the death of his mother. He also explains the enormous pressure everyday life puts on a public person and how repressing the huge heartbreak of losing his mother at a young age led to severe anxiety and panic attacks.

Finally, he started therapy on the advice of some close friends, and therapy helped him to see that he never processed all of the tough stuff that happened to him as a child. These deep-rooted issues resulted in anxiety.

Kerry Washington for Binge-Eating Disorder

Eating disorders are one of the most misunderstood and difficult mental health conditions to treat. Kerry Washington opened up in a 20/20 interview about her experience with disordered eating, sharing that she had suicidal ideation, feeling at times completely hopeless, and that she wanted to "destroy herself."

Body dysmorphia and body hatred can be common, especially in young girls and teens. Many people strive for a level of perfection that doesn't really exist outside of airbrushed professional photography. Kerry Washington admits that managing these thoughts is a lifelong process, she's pulled out of the toxic spiral she was in.

Gwyneth Paltrow for Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression is fairly common in women, and yet you don't hear much about it in the public discourse. Around 1 in 7 women will experience PPD at varying levels of severity. Gwyneth Paltrow shared her experience, explaining that she opted for a holistic approach and attended weekly therapy sessions briefly. Therapy allowed her to focus on sleep and allowed her to avoid antidepressants - though she acknowledged that medication management is necessary for some.

John Green for Anxiety

Popular novelist John Green shared in an interview with the New York Times his struggle with mental illness in the form of anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder. He told the reporter that he's been living with these disorders for as long as he can remember and, at times, has difficulty focusing on anything.

He normalized mental health issues by sharing that he looks at these disorders as any chronic illness and feels lucky that they are manageable. Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions--it affects millions of Americans. John Green spoke out against the stigma surrounding mental illnesses and emphasized the importance of seeking treatment.

Demi Lovato for Bipolar Disorder, Eating Disorders, and Depression

Demi Lovato recently went public about her mental health challenges. The singer revealed her struggles with bipolar disorder, eating disorder, and depression. Both bipolar I and bipolar II disorder are heavily stigmatized mental health conditions, with many people using "bipolar" as a pejorative synonymous with "crazy." Lovato shared that she felt relief at going public, and that going to therapy pulled her out of her own spiral of negativity.

Halle Berry for Stress

Actress Halley Berry shared her journey toward learning self-love and dealing with stress and hardship in her life. She strongly advocates for professional help, telling others that if they need mental health help, they should try therapy. This is excellent advice, as stress is a universal experience, and while seeking therapy is such an advantage to managing stress, few of us do so. Most of us suffer silently under the strain and feel that we have to tough it out.

Jennifer Garner on Mindfulness

Jennifer Garner is another advocate for people who experience anxiety. In an Instagram live session, she talked about the physical symptoms of stress, and how to identify when to target these feelings. She also advocated the use of meditation to manage stress, sharing that it can help control stress responses like rapid heartbeat and shallow breathing.

Why Celebrity Spotlights on Mental Health Matter

Some people may wonder why they should care about the mental health challenges of celebrities. After all, what does Gwyneth Paltrow's postpartum depression have to do with anything?

The thing is, many people who are dealing with the effects of mental health conditions like postpartum depression feel alone because there isn't a lot of spotlight on this type of illness. We share cancer ribbons and talk about heart health, but often mental illnesses are simply thought of as unimportant or as personal failings.

When popular celebrities open up about how they sought treatment, even if only for a brief period, they can do half the job of normalizing attending therapy for the general public. All that stuff that seems so trivial is a great form of advocacy for attending therapy.

Many of us may be going through our own spiral of negative thoughts, and even those of us who think we're the world's happiest people may be dealing with unresolved issues.

Whether you are feeling in bad shape due to anxiety, depression, or unresolved trauma, an unbiased person like a therapist can bring perspective, help you develop healthy coping skills, and guide you toward better mental health.

You may see someone on an as-needed basis or work with different therapists over your lifetime. In any case, don't hesitate to reach out for help. Help is available.

Shedding the Therapy Stigma in NYC

If you have been considering therapy for any reason, but have been intimidated by societal stigma, realize that you aren't alone.

At Williamsburg Therapy Group, we understand how challenging it can be to reach out for help, and offer our services in a professional therapeutic environment that is a safe space for everyone.

Give us a call today, and our patient coordinator will help you find the right Brooklyn therapist to get you started on the path toward healing.

Book a Therapy Session in Brooklyn Today

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