Following the tragic deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, social media has been flooded with posts on the issue of mental health. And after retweeting and responding to an outpouring of messages from fans regarding their own experiences, GENERAL HOSPITAL star Maurice Benard (Sonny) has shared his own heartfelt message on the subject for anyone who is suffering or needs help.
“I’d like to say a few words about the recent deaths,” Benard expressed backstage at the GH studio. “I don’t know if I can put it as eloquently as my daughter Cailey did, but I know as far as mental illness, bipolar, anxiety, depression… sometimes the pain can be unbearable. But it’s never too unbearable to ask for help. I think that’s the most important thing. There are organizations… go to your friends, your wife, your husband, your loved ones and just say, ‘I need help.’”
Benard lives with bipolar and has brought the mental health issue to light on GH where his character of Sonny Corinthos as well as on-screen son, Morgan, were diagnosed with the disorder. The actor also speaks out about mental health issues whenever he has the opportunity, both online and at speaking engagements around the country. “Over 20 years ago, I made a decision to speak,” he confided on Twitter, “and every time I do, I know I can never stop. I will never stop speaking on the subject.”
And with mental health issues in the forefront of peoples’ minds now more than ever, Benard will be able to use his celebrity to help bring even more awareness to the difficult subject.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
For more on your favorite GH stars, keep reading ABC Soaps In Depth magazine.
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