Kristen Bell has been bringing discussion about depression into the spotlight of late, opening up about her own experience with mental illness in an interview with Off Camera.
However most recently, she has explained why she refuses to remain silent about this issue, by writing a powerful essay for TIME Magazine's website Motto. The essay covers her experience with depression and anxiety, and how getting help from a therapist can make a difference.
She starts out by explaining to the reader the difference between depression and sadness:
"For me, depression is not sadness. It’s not having a bad day and needing a hug. It gave me a complete and utter sense of isolation and loneliness. Its debilitation was all-consuming, and it shut down my mental circuit board. I felt worthless, like I had nothing to offer, like I was a failure."
She goes on to talk about how therapy can give you clarity in those moments of doubt.
"Now, after seeking help, I can see that those thoughts, of course, couldn’t have been more wrong. It’s important for me to be candid about this so people in a similar situation can realize that they are not worthless and that they do have something to offer. We all do."
Kristen was particularly shocked by the rate of mental illness in America - with 20% of the population experiencing it at some time in their life. Though she stayed mostly quiet about her battle with depression throughout the first 15 years of her career in acting, she feels a responsibility to speak up now to help others going through it and not knowing what their options are.
"Depression is a problem that actually has so many solutions. Let’s work together to find those solutions for each other and cast some light on a dark situation."