Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

10 Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

We live in a world where every day, we are exposed to tensions, pressures, heart-breaks, competitions and such trying situations that expose our minds and bodies to immense amount of distress. As a result, we often develop various mental disorders. This is not just true in case of the common people. The celebrities we closely follow, too, are not exempt from such psychological health issues. Let us look at some of the popular celebrities with mental health disorders.

10. Elton John

Elton John

Elton John is known and loved for his soulful music, which always manage to lift the spirits of the listeners. But, the music star himself had to battle with the vices of substance abuse, as well as bulimia. He underwent drug overdose during Elton Week in 1975. He also indulged in binge eating to uncontrollable amounts of food, and, in bouts of excessive concern about his weight and negative self-imaging, adopted various harmful and painful means of purging. Though a little late, he still realized he needed help, and went to rehab. He is now clean and sober.

9. Kurt Cobain

Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

In the last few years of his life, alternative rock icon Kurt Cobain suffered from drug abuse and depression. In fact, he had been also diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder or ADD, and Bipolar Disorder as a young age. Later, he made several attempts to commit suicide, and overdosed on drugs and alcohol. He was found dead, about 3 days after he shot himself. For Kurt who knew the importance of diagnosis, compliance to treatment became an issue.

8. Ashley Judd

Ashley Judd

American movie actor Ashley Judd is one of the most noted actors of Hollywood. She had quite a tough time as an abused child, and this led to her struggle with depression for quite a long time, until she finally checked into a mental health treatment centre in Texas. As she herself put it, she was “sick and tired of being sick and tired.” She was smart enough to seek help and let a correct course of treatment cure her depression, insomnia and co-dependency.

7. Russell Brand

Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

British comedian Russell Brand is known for his multi-faceted display of talent, as well as his unique fashion-sense. Many do not know that he suffers from ADHD symptoms like inattentiveness, impulsiveness and hyperactivity, and, as a diagnosed Bipolar, has to struggle with extreme mood swings. As a child he had weight issues, and suffered from Bulimia, which led to depression and eating disorder, which he eventually overcame.

6. Brooke Shields

Brooke Shields

She might be one of the most beautiful among models and actresses, but motherhood brought her severe depression. This was not just common baby blues. Her depression led her to a point where she didn’t want to live anymore. She had Postpartum Depression (PPD), but she was diagnosed early, and learnt to manage her PPD with professional help and medication. She has publicly discussed her experienced to help others who go through PPD.

5. Charlize Theron

Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

This strikingly beautiful and exceptionally talented actress is capable of handling any kind of role, but what she cannot handle is a hidden clutter, as revealed by the actress herself while talking about her neurotic tendencies. Theron suffers from OCD, and calls it organizational compulsions. Messy cabinets perturb her, and Theron has lain awake, unable to stop thinking about a possible clutter in the cabinet, which certainly proves that it is more than some lovable quirk. She is willing to go through the cabinet of a stranger, to make sure it is not messy.

4. Herschel Walker

Herschel Walker

Herschel Walker is a former NFL player and was also a professional mixed martial artist. Long after his retirement, in recent years, he has gone public with his complex mental disorder. Herschel has had to struggle with Dissociative Identity Disorder or DID, to be freed from the characteristic feature of this disease, i.e. being under the influence of multiple distinct personalities or identities, preventing the sufferer from acting like himself. He received treatment, and today, he proudly tells the world about his greatest achievement.

3. Michael Phelps

Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

Michael Phelps is an Olympic gold medallist American swimmer, and is considered the most decorated Olympian of all time. He has a total of 22 medals. However, he has gone through tough times at an early age. His mother revealed that Michael was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD. His struggles with ADHD disrupted his school-work when he was 9. But, he overcame the disorder with personally prescribed medication. Swimming too played a huge part in managing the disorder.

2. David Beckham

David Beckham

Former English footballer David Beckham celebrated throughout the world for his sports skill, as well as one of the most handsome sports persons of all time. Beckham publicly admitted that he suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD, and accepts he has an addiction to keep everything perfect and clean. Despite his efforts to break his cycle of repetitive behaviour, he is unable to stop. He needs everything in a straight line or in pairs. His house has three fridges, where everything is symmetrically co-ordinated down either side.

1. Anjelina Jolie

Famous Celebrities with Mental Health Disorders

Angelina Jolie has been in the public eye for her excellence in many spheres. Be it her extraordinary acting skills, her several prestigious awards, her social work or her personal life, Jolie is a Hollywood fanatic’s favorite girl. But, despite all the success, she hasn’t been able to prevent herself from falling into the clasps suicidal and homicidal ideations in the late 1990s. But, she voluntarily sought professional help, and was diagnosed with Presumptive Borderline Personality Disorder, after which she has managed to return to a healthy and happy life.

There are many other celebrities who have gone through different forms of mental illness. While many celebrities prefer to be private about their mental health, others talk about these publicly, to encourage people with psychological issues to accept the condition and seek help instead of feeling ashamed. Evading the truth can lead a person to an abysmal darkness. But with proper diagnosis, treatment and support, it is possible to control, manage and even overcome mental illnesses, as many of the celebrities’ experiences testify.

Written by Oendrila De

I am a Freelance writer at websites, magazines and other organizations, pursuing a Master's degree in Mass Communication and Community Journalism, with a passion for human interest stories.