Women Speaking Out About Mental Health

Depression and anxiety can often feel as though it’s you against the world.

According to the World Health Organization, depression is not only the most common mental health problem that women face, but they may be more prone to it than men as well. Each year, 1 in 5 women in the United States has a mental health problem such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD), or an eating disorder.

To learn more about how you aren’t alone in your fight against mental health, read on to see how some friendly faces cope in the face of depression and anxiety, and how it’s okay to speak out when you feel like your struggle is yours to face alone.

Malala:

“There are so many things in the world; a lot of them are really depressing… What we need to do is remain positive because our sadness can’t change the world. I hope to see more Muslim young people coming forward and present and share their voice, share their stories that they are also known as equals to everybody else and have a normal life.” –TeenVogue Magazine, December 2019

Kerry Washington:

When asked about seeing a therapist:

“I mean, yeah. Absolutely. I say that publicly because I think it’s really important to take the stigma away from mental health…. My brain and my heart are really important to me. I don’t know why I wouldn’t seek help to have those things be as healthy as my teeth. I go to the dentist. So why wouldn’t I go to a shrink?” –Glamour Magazine, April 2015

Awkwafina:

On experiencing anxiety/depression as a child:

“When I was young, I often had difficulty believing in myself and feeling confident in certain things. I think that I had to really find it. I remember feeling that always, as a young kid. Around the time that I lost my mom at age four. The way that I dealt with anxiety or losing my mom was not holding that sadness in… Letting it out was really helpful and actually talking to people about it… I think I developed humor as a defense mechanism.” NextShark, July 2018

Kristen Bell:

“When I was 18, [my mom] said, ‘If you start to feel like you are twisting things around you, and you start to feel like there is no sunlight around you, and you are paralyzed with fear, this is what it is and here’s how you can help yourself.’ And I’ve always had a really open and honest dialogue about that, especially with my mom, which I’m so grateful for. Because you have to be able to cope with it. I mean, I present that very cheery bubbly person, but I also do a lot of work, I do a lot of introspective work and I check in with myself when I need to exercise and I got on a prescription when I was really young to help with my anxiety and depression and I still take it today. And I have no shame in that because my mom had said if you start to feel this way, talk to your doctor, talk to a psychologist and see how you want to help yourself. And if you do decide to go on a prescription to help yourself, understand that the world wants to shame you for that, but in the medical community, you would never deny a diabetic his insulin. Ever. But for some reason, when someone needs a serotonin inhibitor, they’re immediately crazy or something. And I don’t know, it’s a very interesting double standard that I often don’t have the ability to talk about but I certainly feel no shame about.” Off Camera with Sam Jones, April 2016

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