Women's Depression: Jennifer Aniston, J.K. Rowling, Emma Thompson Cite Clinical Therapy Helps

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By Jacob Cherian | August 2, 2013 1:07 PM EST

Jack Nicholson's portrayal in One Flew Over the Cuckoos' Nest was a wonderful rendition of how someone who had lost touch with reality. His delightful comic relief reminds audiences about the adjustments at various turning points in life.

The recent death of Soprano star, James Gondalfiini, sheds some light on "therapy" used in unusual settings. Ordinarily, you might not think of a mafia boss needing to vent his emotions, so he can be a better to mob boss. But his visits to a therapist enabled him to deal with his anger, his fears and anxieties.

In real life, several actresses have come forward to expose the same fears, anxieties and unfulfilled expectations that haunt their lives. Hollywood has changed our lives through motion pictures that transform our lives. The film industry also has some talented and caring individuals who speak out about topics similar to those on the Oprah Winfrey show.

Gwyneth Paltrow is one of these women. She told the world that she had post partum depression since 2008. She told Good Housekeeping, "The hardest part for me was acknowledging the problem ... I think it's so important for women to talk about."

Another one of these brave individuals is Brooke Shields, who also experienced post partum depression.

She was quoted as saying, "I couldn't believe it when my doctor told me that I was suffering from postpartum depression and gave me a prescription for the antidepressant Paxil. I wasn't thrilled to be taking drugs. In fact, I prematurely stopped taking them and had a relapse that almost led me to drive my car into a wall with Rowan in the backseat. But the drugs, along with weekly therapy sessions, are what saved me - and my family."

Although Paltro and Shields were treated for a naturally occurring condition after childbirth, actress Emma Thomson was diagnosed with 'clinical depression.' Thomson was engrossed in the idea of having another child after her first daughter was born in 1999.

 "For years I counted people's children in the street and thought I'd never recover," she said, adding that "But you do, of course."  Thompson managed her depression by seeing a therapist once a week, reports the Telegraph.

Who would have thought that singer Sheryl Crowe would speak out about her own clinical depression, which she suffered since she was a child, she told the Daily Mail. "It's always been part of my life."

The boisterous and vivacious Catherine Zeta Jones is no stranger to an "illness of the mind." She was treated for Bipolar II Disorder, which is sometimes referred to as 'manic depression.' "If my revelation of having bipolar II has encouraged one person to seek help, then it is worth it," Zeta-Jones told People Magazine. "There is no need to suffer silently and there is no shame in seeking help," she added. 

And of course, the author who gives us messages of insight and adventure from the recesses of her troubling mind, is also one of the most successful ones - J.K. Rowling. She admitted to having clinical depression while writing one of the most loved children's books of all time, Harry Potter.

She told the Daily Mail , it was because of her fame that, she decided to continue he treatment:  "You don't expect the kind of problems that [fame] brings with it. I felt that I had to solve everyone's problems. I was hit by this tsunami of demands. I felt overwhelmed. And I was really worried that I would mess up ... I had to do it [therapy] again when my life was changing so suddenly -- and it really helped. I'm a big fan of it, it helped me a lot."

In a featured issue of Glamour Magazine in September, Jennifer Aniston said therapy is not just about mental illness. It is also about finding out who you are.

She said she would, "[In my] thirties. Go to therapy. Clean up all of the s--t. Clean up all of the toxins and the noise. Understand who you are. Educate yourself on the self. You can undo a lot of things. If you're not happy, you can become happy. Happiness is a choice. That's the thing I really feel. Like with friends who refuse to get happy, who refuse to rise above the discomfort of where they're at," said Aniston in a Huffington Post report.

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