By now, the world knows of the death of Robin Williams (1951-2014), the uber-actor, stand-up comedian, film producer, screenwriter, and ad lib genius who was honored for his work over and over again.
On Monday, Aug. 11, Williams was pronounced dead at his Northern California home. The Marin County coroner reported that he had cuts on his left wrist, but the cause of death was asphyxiation. He hung himself.
Why? He had everything, right?
But Robin Williams suffered from depression.
I’m sad about this news. Robin Williams was depressed.
Think about the saddest moment you've ever experienced. Now think about how it would be to feel like that all day, everyday. And your brain chemistry is such that there is no convincing yourself that things will ever get better.
That kind of depression is an illness. It needs treatment. And it is one of the most common mental disorders in the U.S.
If a loved one shows signs of chronic sadness, get help; professional, medical help. Know the symptoms. The disease can be treated.
Depression reportedly manifests itself differently in men and women. It hits women harder, experts say, while men are prone to mask the symptoms with substance abuse, which Williams battled for many years.
It is so tragic that someone who brought such joy to the world was overwhelmed with unhappiness. And it makes me so sad.