'My name is ... and I suffer from depression & anxiety': SA's big names reveal their mental health status
SA's public figures have joined many in opening up about their mental health status and how they deal with it.
On social media, celebs and politicians such as musician Simphiwe Dana and DA MP Phumzile Van Damme have been sharing their stories about dealing with depression and anxiety to destigmatise mental health.
The conversation about destigmatisation comes after Miss SA Shudufadzho Musida pledged solidarity with people who struggle with mental health.
Musida hosts Mindful Mondays, a weekly live discussion about mental health on Instagram in partnership with the SA Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag).
In a recent post, Musida opened up about her struggles of dealing with mental health.
“I’m Miss SA but I too, have struggles and I can only hope that with the little I do through Mindful Mondays people can know they’re not alone. I’m with them,” she said.
“I’m not as strong as I’d like to be on most days, and sometimes after Mindful Mondays I find myself learning and healing through the collectiveness of the cause. I think I’m explaining this because I want people to know it’s OK to not be OK but they’re not alone,” she added.
Many who joined in on the conversations shared that they were taking medication and seeing therapists to cope with their depression and anxiety.
Dana said she doesn't take medication for depression as she fears it will affect her creativity.
“I do take Stresam [a non-benzodiazepine anxiolytic and anticonvulsant drug] for the anxiety,” she said.
Here is a snapshot of some of the stories shared on Twitter:
Life was going well. We were on a path to getting me off the medication. And it took one event of trauma & it all came tumbling down. Integrity Trauma I’d taken on the chin for 2 years. Trauma from times I feared for my life I’d suppressed. So it’s hello, darkness, my old friend.— Phumzile Van Damme (@zilevandamme) April 12, 2021
Thanks for sharing. My name is Lalla Hirayama. I struggle with panic & anxiety disorder, depression and have gone through 3suicidal phases in my life. I have worked w/my psychologist for 8 years & a psychiatrist. I’m currently on medication to help.— Lalla Hirayama (@Lalla_Hirayama) April 12, 2021
Let’s destigmatize 🙏 https://t.co/nPUZNLU1yN
Thank you for sharing, my name is Tšepang Molisana and I was diagnosed with clinical depression when I was eleven years old. I was diagnosed with anxiety at twenty one. With therapy and medication, my condition has been treatable and survivable. Let’s de-stigmatise & be loving ❤️ https://t.co/Qy2bxdHfwB— Tšepang (@TshepiMolisana) April 12, 2021
Thank you for sharing. I am Tessa Dooms, I have chronic depression & anxiety. I last tried to commit suicide when I was 11 years old after seeing the impact of suicide on a friend's family when he died by suicide. I am not on meds but have therapy periodically. Let's destigmatize https://t.co/gXt93b2J48— Tessa Dooms (@tessie18) April 12, 2021
Thank you for sharing. I am Vuyo Mkize. I was diagnosed with severe depression and anxiety in 2017 and spent 21days at a wellness facility and the year in therapy. I’m going back to therapy next month. Let’s destigmatize🙏🏾#mentalhealth #SuicidePrevention https://t.co/7lrcpijB6p— Vuyo Mkize (@vonchy_19) April 12, 2021
Thank you for sharing. I am Kanyisa Booi,I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety at 15. My early 20's were filled with suicide ideation. Through change of environment, medication and some talk therapy this has stopped. I am currently not on meds. Let's destigmatize. https://t.co/UHujJoHk0r— 🌈Nomakanjani🕯️🕯️🕯️ (@kayisebooi) April 12, 2021
Thank you sharing ❤️ I'm Robyn Porteous and I take medication for depression. I am currently adjusting to new medication. I also use anxiety medication as needed. May no one ever feel they are alone or feel shamed into suffering in silence. Let's destigmatise! #ItsOkayToNotBeOkay https://t.co/RLVc0iR9ow— Robyn Porteous (@RobynPorteous) April 12, 2021