NBA star Kevin Love recently opened up about his experiences with anxiety and panic attacks. In an essay for The Players’ Tribune, entitled “Everyone’s Going Through Something,” Love revealed how a panic attack he suffered during halftime of a game in November 2017 fundamentally changed the way he thinks about mental health. Love went on to explain that, as a man, it can be difficult to talk about your emotions and mental health issues, as boys are socialized to “be strong” and deal with problems on their own. Love says that going to therapy and talking about his issues helped him immensely, and he realized that opening up about his struggles was essential and healthy.
In the wake of Love’s revelations, TODAY anchor Carson Daly also opened up about his own experiences being diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Daly says that coming to terms with his diagnosis was important to managing it:
“I have just embraced the fact that’s how I’m hardwired, and I understand it and I accept the model,” he said.
Daly also pointed out that there can be a positive side to feeling things so deeply, making the connection that the thing that makes him experience anxiety is also the thing that makes him get chills when he hears music or sees a beautiful sunset.
Anxiety disorders like generalized anxiety disorder and panic disorder are extremely common. In fact, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 18 percent of the population every year. But although they’re highly treatable, only 37 percent of those suffering actually receive treatment.
It’s great that celebrities like Love and Daly are speaking out about their experiences. Hopefully, their honesty will help to lessen the stigma around mental health issues and encourage others to get the help they need.