Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is a top guy – going by his social media accounts he seems to be absolutely loving every minute of life.
But it seems things weren’t always this care-free and happy. Speaking candidly on Oprah’s Master Class recently he detailed a time in his life when he suffered from depression, which he says caused him to feel isolated and alone, Movie Pilot reported.
The 43-year-old said:
I found that with depression one of the most important things you could realize is that you’re not alone.
I wish I had someone at that time who could just pull me aside and [say], ‘Hey, it’s going to be okay.’
Thank you Dr. Sometimes the hardest thing for us guys is to ask for help. I made that mistake a few times. https://t.co/IysNOdgzU2
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) November 14, 2015
According to Dwayne, his struggle began when he was rejected by the NFL at 23. He was living with his mum and dad at home and his future remained uncertain.
This was the moment he decided he wanted to become a professional wrestler – both his dad and granddad were, so he wanted to take over the family business, so to speak.
His dad actually tried to dissuade him from doing so, saying it would be ‘the worst mistake you’ll ever make’.
But he persisted – obviously – and went on to have a hugely successfully career, both as a wrestler, and now as an actor.
He said in the interview:
[My dad said], ‘You are throwing it all away. It is the worst mistake you will ever make. You’re ruining your career.’
I said, ‘Maybe I’ll be no good, but I feel like, in my heart, I have to do this.’
The Rock still provides small inspirational gems, and none rings as true as when he reflects on his early career choices: “The greatest lesson about that is: Be you.”
Unfortunately there is still a huge stigma surrounding depression – and mental illness in general – with a lot of men finding it hard to talk about any issues they might be having.
It’s great that someone like The Rock would open up about his own problems, it makes people feel like they’re not alone in dealing with what is an often misunderstood illness.