Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson discusses his battle with depression, mental-health issues
The wrestler-turned-actor discussed his struggles with mental health and his mother's suicide attempt
Sometimes, it's easy to forget that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is human. At this point, it'd be hard to argue against him being a supernatural force who has more hours in a day than the rest of us. He's a relentless TV and movie star by day, and a happy-go-lucky champion of social media by night.
But, again, he's human, and that's not something he's ashamed of.
The 45-year-old wrestler-turned-actor opened up about his history of depression this week, saying that he's battled his mental health for decades.
While speaking to The Express, Johnson shared details about his mother's attempted suicide when he was 15 years old. At the time, their family had recently been evicted from their apartment.
"She got out of the car on Interstate 65 in Nashville and walked into oncoming traffic. Big rigs and cars were swerving out of the way. I grabbed her and pulled her back on the gravel shoulder of the road," he said. "What's crazy about that suicide attempt is that to this day, she has no recollection of it whatsoever. Probably best she doesn't."
After that experience, Johnson said he went through bouts of serious depression of his own.
"I reached a point where I didn't want to do a thing or go anywhere," he said. "I was crying constantly."
He went on to reference several other low points in his life, including when injuries derailed his once-promising football career. Johnson played defensive tackle for the University of Miami, where he won a national championship on the 1991 Hurricanes team, but his childhood dreams of playing professional football only made it as far as a few months in the Canadian Football League.
Shortly after being cut from the CFL's Calgary Stampeders, Johnson says his girlfriend broke up with him, leading to his "absolute worst time" dealing with mental health issues.
Ultimately, he overcame losing his football career and that girl, and things have worked out pretty well for him. He's currently one of the highest-paid and most beloved actors in Hollywood.
However, those who have dealt with depression know that it's often not something that goes away, even with money and/or success. Luckily, Johnson says both he and his mother are in a better place these days.
"We both healed but we've always got to do our best to pay attention when other people are in pain," he said. "We have to help them through it and remind them they are not alone."
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