The Rock’s Inspiring Message For People With Depression

Photo: Jim Smeal/BEI/ Rex Features.
If you've ever seen Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in a wrestling ring, you know he can seem invincible. But as he recently explained, Johnson has had his fair share of low moments, just like the rest of us. In a heartfelt video for Oprah's new program, Master Class, Johnson shares how an episode of depression eventually led him to professional wrestling, and what he learned from the experience. After being passed over by the NFL and cut from his Canadian football team, Johnson says he felt alone — "It's only you, and you're in a bubble." He'd wished he had someone to reach out and tell him that he wasn't the first or last person to deal with depression. Johnson's advice for anyone with depression is inspiring: "Hold onto that fundamental quality of faith," he says. "Have faith that on the other side of your pain is something good." For Johnson, then 23, that turned out to be incredibly true. His next step was to throw himself wholeheartedly into professional wrestling. Considering he still goes by "The Rock," it's pretty clear how that went. Globally, about half as many men as women experience depression. Yet the rate of suicide among men is four times that of women, which suggests untreated depression may be higher in men. "Sometimes the hardest thing for us guys is to ask for help," Johnson tweeted, and there's research to back him up. Men are less likely to seek help for depression for a variety of reasons, including pressure to conform to the gender stereotype that men should not or simply do not express their emotions. We should remind ourselves that depression isn't a weakness — it's a medical illness that can be treated. If you're in need of some extra reassurance today, check out Johnson's video below (which we definitely did not cry at all the way through).

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