Taraji P. Henson On Suicidal Ideation In The Pandemic

“Our thoughts…They’re that powerful.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on regular life in so many ways, including in the realm of mental health — a subject of which Taraji P. Henson recently opened up about her own experience with.

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“I was in a dark place,” she admitted. “For a couple of days, I couldn’t get out of the bed, I didn’t care. That’s not me. Then, I started having thoughts about ending it. It happened two nights in a row.”

Henson said that at one point she thought to herself, “I could go in there right now and just end it all, ’cause I want it to be over.”

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Eventually, she decided to reach out to her friends: “I’m talking to one of my girlfriends and I knew, I was smart enough to say, ‘I have to say it.’ Because a part of me was ashamed. I was like, ‘I don’t want them to think I’m crazy. I don’t want them to obsess over me or think they gotta come and sit on me.'”

“So one day I just blurted it out to my girlfriend. She called me in the morning and I was like, ‘You know I thought about killing myself last night. Oh my god, I feel so much better. I’m not gonna do it now.'”

Zach Pagano / NBC / Getty Images

Henson went on to explain how not talking about how she felt initially exacerbated the suicidal ideation she was experiencing.

“At first, it was like, I don’t want to be here. And then I started thinking about going and getting the gun. And that’s why when I woke up the next morning, and I blurted it out.”

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“Because I felt like after a while it was going to take over me and it was going to become a plan because that’s how strong my brain is. Our thoughts…They’re that powerful.”

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