Michelle Williams is sharing her struggle with depression with the whole world.
“I am just sitting here and fighting back tears,” Williams told co-host Robin Roberts. “I’m just thankful to be here to tell this story.”
In July, Williams checked herself into a mental health facility to seek help for her mental health and well-being. She also shared an Instagram post about the importance of getting “help, support and guidance.”
“I was like, ‘Just fight it, you’ve been here before,'” Williams expressed on GMA. “I’m identifying it…I just didn’t do enough…so for months, I was slipping and slipping and slipping [and] before you knew it, I was at the bottom of the pit looking up like, ‘Am I really here again?’ And I suffered by myself. I didn’t want to tell anybody.”
“I didn’t want anyone to be like, ‘Oh my gosh, here we go again. I thought you were over it,'” she said, adding that this was her second time dealing with depression.
Williams, however, wants to shed the stigma attached to mental illness. “Michelle has a great perspective on it because the brain is an organ as well,” Johnson explained. “If we have a kidney problem, we go get it checked, if we have a heart problem, we go get it checked. But when it comes to the brain for some reason we label people as crazy.”
Williams added that when she was in the mental health facility, “I didn’t see anybody that looked crazy. I didn’t see anybody strapped up, I didn’t see anybody doing crazy behavior. And literally, since then, I watch my mouth. I don’t call people crazy anymore. Some people…they just need help.”
She also didn’t want to talk about her situation or release a statement on social media, until the news of her depression leaked.
“It hurt my heart because that’s what keeps people from getting treatment — somebody might find out,” she said. “I had to close my curtains. I even left the treatment facility early because I was so paranoid.”
“I need the sunshine [and] I could no longer have it because somebody just had to tell it,” she continued. “We’ve lost so many amazing people, whether you’re in the spotlight or a loved one at home couldn’t go [to treatment] because they were worried about, ‘Is somebody at my job going to find out?'”
Williams is in a much better place these days and working on living a happier and healthier life with Johnson. The pair is also gearing up for the premiere of their new OWN reality series, Chad Loves Michelle, airing Nov. 3.
For more on Williams, watch below.
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