Kendall Jenner has often spoken about her experiences with mental health over the past few years, but it turns out that the supermodel has been dealing with anxiety all her life. During an appearance on Good Morning America on May 15, Kendall Jenner opened up about experiencing her first anxiety attack, which occurred when she was "really young." The Keeping Up With the Kardashians star has teamed up with fashion designer Kenneth Cole to raise awareness for The Mental Health Coalition, and shared some of her own experiences with anxiety as a result.
"I was really, really young and I remember ... feeling like I couldn't breathe," Jenner recalled of the first time she remembers dealing with anxiety. "[I was] venting to my mom and being like, ‘Mom, I feel like I can't breathe. Something must be wrong,'" she shared. "And she of course took me to a bunch of doctors just to make sure that I was okay physically, and I was. [But] no one ever told me that I had anxiety."
Jenner also revealed that while things became more manageable for her as she got older, "maybe like three or four years ago it came back completely full-on and I would have crazy panic attacks." In fact, it wasn't until recently that the model says she "finally kind of got the information that I needed about [anxiety]," and so she wants to share her own experiences in the hopes that it will help others dealing with anxiety "not feel as alone."
Jenner also posted a video on Instagram talking about her experiences with anxiety as part of her campaign to raise awareness for The Mental Health Coalition. "For me, I have good days and I have some really anxious days, so I'm really off and on," she explained, adding that "on the days that I don't really have as much going on, I tend to get a bit anxious. And, to calm myself down, I'll usually read a book or meditate."
Jenner first opened up about her experiences with anxiety in a 2016 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, where she revealed that she was "scared to fall asleep" because she's been suffering from sleep paralysis while traveling. While she revealed in a 2017 post on her now-defunct website that she was "finally learning how to cope" with her anxiety through meditation and yoga, things took a turn for the worse in 2017, and Jenner decided to skip Paris fashion week in order to look after her mental health.
"Last season I didn't do any shows. Just ‘cause I was working in LA and I was like 'Oof, I can't right now — I'm gonna go crazy,'" Jenner told LOVE magazine in 2018. "I was on the verge of a mental breakdown." Jenner addressed her experiences with anxiety — which for her, tend to be triggered by traveling and public events — again in a 2018 episode of KUWTK, where she explained that she doesn't want it to get in the way of her career.
"Anxiety's all mental, so you have to try and find your ways around it. I try and remember sometimes it's out of your control. But I think I'm very blessed to be in the situation I am in," Jenner explained. As difficult as that can be, by being so open about her experiences with anxiety, Jenner is helping other people to look after their own mental health as well.
If you or someone you know is seeking help for mental health concerns, visit the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) website, or call 1-800-950-NAMI(6264). For confidential treatment referrals, visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website, or call the National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP(4357). In an emergency, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or call 911.