As a kid growing up in the 90's, we literally had no choice but to watch films with Robin Williams in. He was in every kid's film produced in that era and just before. Thankfully for us, they were funny.
So a few years ago it really surprised me when I read this article in the Guardian. What struck me was the complete sadness of the man and how strongly it came across. It is not often I read an interview that so strongly depicts such melancholy. Of course, celebrities talk about their struggles all the time, but they always seem so distant. This was the first time I really caught a glimpse of a celebrity's real life personality.
As the interviewer says, only a few weeks before he was being his more well known, zany self on the Jonathan Ross Show.
At the time, I'd never realised how, if you were depressed, you could put on that much of a face. It is only now I'm struggling with depression myself that I understand how it can be done, and actually how frequently it is done by so many depressed people. Many people I know would be surprised to find that I am struggling with depression myself.
In this interview with Jonathan Ross, Robin jokes about his drug and alcohol addiction like it's another hilarious celebrity anecdote. That's what I do. When people ask me how I am, knowing about what's going on, I laugh it off. 'Oh I'm fine...' I'll say, brushing it off like its nothing.
The problem is, Depression isn't nothing. While we don't know yet whether Robin did try to commit suicide, it certainly consumed him for a large part of his life. It takes over you, often crippling you in such a way that you find it hard to do the simplest of things, even maintain a relationship with you friends and family. And most of the time, it goes completely unnoticed. But he lived with it, pushing it to the corner of his life to make way for his jokes and laughter. If only the jokes and laughter could have won.
|You're Free, Genie|