Here's How Dwayne Johnson Overcame His Crippling Depression

"Struggle and pain is real."

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, 45, is riding high on life right now. The action film star received immense praise for his lead role in last year's Jumanji reboot, he recently welcomed a second daughter into the world with his girlfriend, and he's in peak physical shape.

But the actor, who grew up in poverty in Hayward, California, has been through some rough times.

In a new interview with The Express, Johnson revealed that his mother attempted suicide right in front of him when he was only 15 years old, shortly after being evicted from their apartment.

"She got out of the car on Interstate 65 in Nashville and walked into oncoming traffic," he said. "I grabbed her and pulled her back on the gravel shoulder of the road."

According to Johnson, his mother has blocked out the incident altogether, but it left a mark on his mental and emotional health.

In 1995, he was cut from the the Canadian Football League, due to several injuries that busted his dream of being a professional football player. Shortly afterwards, his girlfriend left him. Johnson said it was his "absolute worst time."

"Struggle and pain is real. I was devastated and depressed," he said. "I reached a point where I didn't want to do a thing or go anywhere. I was crying constantly."

Luckily, he overcame his depression and became the world wrestling champion that earned him the name "The Rock" and catapulted him into his first starring movie role as The Scorpion King in The Mummy Returns.

In a follow-up tweet to the interview, Johnson wrote "We all go thru the sludge/[stuff] and depression never discriminates. Took me a long time to realize it but the key is to not be afraid to open up. Especially us dudes have a tendency to keep it in. You're not alone."

His confession and advice has received enormous praise on social media for helping to combat the toxic stereotype that "real men don't cry" and that "real men" should bottle up their feelings.

In another inspiring interview in which he described how he went from being a young delinquent to a life-affirming celebrity, he said, "Getting better every day is a mindset. You apply it and you go in increments."

We couldn't agree more. And for more on mental health, here are 10 Drug-Free Ways to Beat Depression.

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Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more
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