According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, 49%—yes, almost half—of people who have felt symptoms of depression and anxiety never seek medical help. In any given year, one in five people in Canada will experience a mental health problem and by age 40, about 50% of the population will have or have had a mental illness.
So why aren’t we talking about this more? The taboo around speaking openly about mental illness still exists, although campaigns like Bell Let’s Talk and Opening Minds (established by the Mental Heath Commissions of Canada) are working to eradicate it.
Celebs who get candid about their own mental health struggles also help chip away at the stigma. From Selena Gomez talking about the importance of therapy in her life to Game of Thrones‘ Kit Harington being open about his stay in rehab, here are the 20+ figures who have shared their own deeply personal experiences in the name of raising awareness, eliminating stigma and helping us all feel a little less alone.
The singer and actor has always been outspoken when it comes to her own mental health. And this week, on Coach’s podcast Dream It Real, she opened up again, this time about her experience with therapy. “I am a believer of therapy,” she said. “I reflect on the younger me, and the times I wished that I could hug my younger self. [Therapy] has helped me understand myself and my childhood a lot better.”
Gomez also talked about social media, and how toxic it can be if you are struggling with your own sense of self-worth. “I got kind of depressed, looking at these people who look beautiful and amazing, and it would just get me down a lot. I just think taking breaks is really important, and just remember that most of it isn’t real.” Amen.
If you or someone you know is struggling, contact Crisis Services Canada at 1-833-456-4566, find a 24/7 Crisis Centre via the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention or reach out to a resource in your province:
British Columbia: Province-Wide Mental Health Support Line (24/7 hotline: 310-6789) | Alberta: Distress Centre Calgary (24/7 hotline: 403-266-4357) | Saskatchewan: Prince Albert Mobile Crisis Unit (24/7 hotline: 306-764-1011) | Manitoba: Manitoba Reason to Live (24/7 hotline: 1-877-435-7170) | Ontario: Connex Ontario (24/7 hotline: 1-866-531-2600) | Quebec: The Quebec Association for Suicide Prevention (24/7 hotline: 866-277-3553) | New Brunswick: Chimo Helpline (24/7 hotline: 450-4357) | Nova Scotia: Mental Health Mobile Crisis Team (24/7 hotline: 1-888-429-8167) | Prince Edward Island: Island Helpline (24/7 hotline: 1-800-218-2885) | Newfoundland: Mental Health Crisis Line (24/7 hotline: 1-888-737-4668) | Northwest Territories: NWT Help Line (24/7 hotline: 1-800-661-0844)
Meet the Entrepreneur Who’s Helping Hundreds of People Access Therapy
The Way I Was Treated at a Hospital After My Suicide Attempt Was Humiliating
Stress Tips You’ll Actually Use from Demi Lovato, Gabrielle Union, Lili Reinhart & More