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Dwayne Johnson recently got candid about the bouts of depression he’s undergone throughout his life, dating back to when he was in college.
During an appearance on The Pivot podcast, the Black Adam actor explained that he first felt depressed when he was at the University of Miami, and he injured his shoulder, which kept him from being able to play on the football team.
“I didn’t want to go to school,” he said. “I was ready to leave. I left school. I didn’t take any midterms, and I just left. But the interesting thing, at that time, is I just didn’t know what it was. I didn’t know what mental health was. I didn’t know what depression was. I just knew I didn’t want to be there, wasn’t going to any of the team meetings, wasn’t participating in anything.”
The Moana voice star explained that he wasn’t able to work out due to his injury, which as an athlete, made what he was going through even tougher.
“Years later, I went through it again when I got a divorce. Didn’t know what it was,” he continued. “Years later, around 2017 or so, went through a little bit. Knew what it was at that time, and luckily, at that time, I had some friends who I could lean on, and say, ‘You know, I’m feeling a little wobbly now. Got a little struggle happening. I’m seeing a little gray and not the blue.'”
The actor said that his “saving grace” during his bouts of depression has been his three daughters and “being a girl dad,” sharing, “You look at them, and you realize, ‘Well, I mean, really, this is what it’s all about.'”
Johnson also expressed that he tries to apply gratitude in his life and find the good things, which has helped him through his mental health struggles.
In an Instagram post promoting the podcast episode, the Red Notice star further expanded on his depression and how he’s gained emotional tools throughout the years to help him cope with it, again stressing that he didn’t know what mental health struggles were for several years.
“As men, we didn’t talk about it. We just kept our head down and worked thru it. Not healthy but it’s all we knew,” he wrote. “If you’re going thru your own version of mental wellness turning into mental hell-ness, the most important thing you can do is talk to somebody. It can’t be fixed if you keep that pain inside. Having the courage to talk to someone is your superpower. I lost two friends to suicide. Talk to someone. Despite how you may feel, you’re never alone.”
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