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Coping with Heartbreak and Loss: Taraji P. Henson’s Mental Health Struggles Proves She is Just Like Us

The renowned actress Taraji P. Henson has everything one could ever ask for: fame, fortune, high-profile friends and a successful career. But despite all these blessings, she often finds herself struggling with anxiety and depression.

This just goes to show that even the most fortunate ones among us aren’t immune to mental health issues. On the contrary, being exposed to constant criticism and public scrutiny puts these stars at a greater risk of mental health issues than us normal folks.

Let us uncover the battles Taraji endured on her journey to success, how she overcame her struggles, as well as the steps she is now taking to break the stigma around mental health especially in the African-American community.

The Confession

In a heart-wrenching interview with Variety, Henson reveals she also suffers from depression like millions of Americans. The renowned actress added how her anxiety has only gotten worse over time now that she has established herself among the Hollywood heavyweights.

Henson didn’t know how to deal with the illness since she never experienced anxiety before. It was something new to her, and like most people, she was afraid to explore this uncharted territory.

Henson suspects her rising fame is one of the main causes of her anxiety and depression.

Henson suspects her rising fame is one of the main causes of her anxiety and depression.

While Henson is counting her blessings and is thankful for everything life has given her, especially after her film entitled “What Men Wants” got released in February, the renowned actress admitted how the pressure associated with fame took a toll on her mental health.

While she enjoyed being in the limelight at first, the actress realized as she grew older that she wanted to have more privacy and couldn’t stand living in the shadows.

The Misconception

While Henson understands that celebrities are obliged to share a significant part of their lives with the public, she wants to address the common misconceptions her fans have about TV personalities.

Henson says people often think that just because celebrities have money and fame, they don’t face any struggles and every day is like a vacation for them. 

Henson says she' taken action about her mental health struggles and seek professional help immediately.

Henson said she took the initiative to seek professional and medical help immediately to help her cope up with her mental health struggles.

According to Henson, they also deal with dire problems whether in their career, profession, or personal lives. Despite all the wealth they have accumulated in their careers, they can’t buy happiness and they must get through each day like any other normal person. 

She also encourages her fans to respect their favorite idol’s privacy because nobody wants to spend their entire life in the spotlight.

The Therapy

From the moment Henson recognized her symptoms and realized that she was suffering from mental health illness, she immediately sought professional help before the problem could get any worse.

According to her, she knows she’ll never overcome her depression and anxiety without medical intervention, so the Golden-Globe Award-winning actress opted to enlist herself for therapy and treatment.

Henson says it's important to get help from a medical professional aside from talking to your friends or families.

Henson says it’s important to get help from a medical professional aside from talking to your friends or families

Henson told Variety that she talks to her therapist whenever her anxiety or depression strikes, who helps her get through the mental struggles she faces.

Henson believes that the therapist doesn’t only provide medical intervention to those who need it, but they also give mental and emotional support to help patients overcome personal struggles. Henson has a very special bond with her therapist, whom she considers as a friend.

The Foundation

Since Henson experienced first-hand how difficult it was to overcome depression on your own, it prompted her to establish the Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation – in honor of her father’s name. Henson’s father was a veteran of the Vietnam War who endured emotional trauma and mental illness (PTSD) until he died in 2005.

After his death, Henson founded the charity in his name to help people overcome their mental health issues and break the stigma surrounding them.

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