Mental health issues can affect anyone, and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is helping shatter misconceptions about the subject. Recently The Rock talked about his battle with depression, and he was super real when describing his experience. In his interview with U.K. publication The Express, published on Sunday, Johnson explained that he's gone through bouts of depression at various moments in his life, including after his mother's suicide attempt. In the interview, Johnson spoke about his own struggles and encouraged fans to support others who might be feeling the same way.
He told the publication,
"We both healed, but we've always got to do our best to pay attention when other people are in pain. We have to help them through it and remind them they are not alone."
Warning: The following section contains information about a suicide attempt, which some may find triggering.
This isn't the first time the actor has spoken about his mom's struggle. Back in February, Johnson shared an Instagram from the set of his HBO show, Ballers, where he was filming a scene that involved visiting the grave of a fellow character who died by suicide. He used the storyline to write a thoughtful caption about his mother's own attempt when he was just 15 years old. Here's part of what he wrote:
"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."
Johnson went on to explain in the caption that his mother "has no recollection" of that day's events. He ended the post by emphasizing how important it is to help people who may be struggling. "We got lucky that day when I was 15 and that ain't always the case," he wrote in the caption.
In the new interview with The Express, Johnson shared that in addition to his mother's incident, he also experienced another low point in his life. That came when he was let go from the Canadian Football League not long after being signed, and his girlfriend broke up with him around the same time. "That was my absolute worst time," Johnson told The Express.
After the interview was published, Johnson shared on Twitter that he's received a lot of positive feedback about his comments. On April 2, he wrote,
"Got tons of responses to this. Thank you. We all go thru the sludge/sh*t 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."
Other celebrities have also spoken about their own experiences with mental health issues, and it's encouraging to see so many A-listers breaking the stigma surrounding mental health. For example, Chrissy Teigen has spoken about experiencing postpartum depression. And other celebrities have also talked about depression and anxiety.
But as Johnson pointed out in his tweet, the people who've spoken about their experiences seem to include more women than men — even though anyone can be affected by something like depression. His comments are a reminder that you never know what someone might be going through, and that it's always OK to ask for help.
If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911, or call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.