Hugh Laurie regrets talking about his depression

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Last year, Hugh Laurie really opened up about his battle with depression. He was extremely honest about the daily and yearly struggles he’s faced, and many applauded him for speaking with such eloquence and candor. As it turns out, Hugh regrets being so forthcoming and honest. He gave an interview to Parade Magazine (quotes via Showbiz Spy) in which he says he wishes he’d kept his mouth shut. He thinks, in retrospect, it sounded like whining from someone who lives a very privileged life. I disagree, but I do see his point:

Hugh Laurie regrets divulging details about his battle with depression – because it riles him when other celebrities whinge about their privileged lives.

The British star recently revealed he was once so low he sought treatment in the mid-1990s – and immediately wished he hadn’t been so forthcoming with details about his personal life.

He tells Parade magazine, “I wish I’d kept my mouth shut about that… Now an undue weight has been given to this aspect of my life.”

“I don’t like to be thought of as this guy who has nothing else to talk about except how miserable my lot was.”

“I remember watching Mel Gibson on some show once, and he was being asked about his belief in the afterlife. Gibson said, ‘Well, I can’t believe this is all there is.’ And I thought, ‘Wait a minute. You’re Mel Gibson. You have millions of dollars. You’re a great-looking chap with every conceivable blessing that could be bestowed upon a man. And that’s not good enough?’”

“So you can see why I’m hesitant to talk about any trivial pain I have. I find myself going, ‘Oh, for God’s sake, Hugh. Pull yourself together.’”

“I do know depression is a disease… It is the last great taboo – something people still don’t want to talk about.”

[From Showbiz Spy]

I can understand how Hugh would, in an attempt to be self-deprecating, refer to his own battle with depression as “trivial pain.” But I doubt that’s how it really feels to him, or to the millions of people who are really struggling. I do see his point, though. It will be difficult for some to see anything but a fraud or a whiner with a rich and famous actor trying to educate about depression. I still love him, though!

Here’s Hugh Laurie outside the Ed Sullivan Theater for ‘The Late Show with David Letterman’ in New York City on March 23rd. Images thanks to WENN .

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25 Responses to “Hugh Laurie regrets talking about his depression”

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  1. Shelly Shellz says:

    I luv him

  2. Le poof says:

    The bit about Mel Gibson pissed me off.

    “And that’s not good enough?”

    Well, no, it’s NOT. Are money and looks the most important things in your sad little Hollywood world, Hugh?

    Go cry some more.

  3. Gemma says:

    My love for Hugh has knows no end! I was surprised he talked about it in the first place since he is usualy so private. But I didn’t see it as whining, just thought it wasn’t a good move to reveal that much of his personal struggles,you know the press is going to bring it up in every interview.

  4. HashBrowns says:

    I completely understand why he’s saying this and trying to make it seem like not such a big deal. It’s difficult keeping your depression a secret from people because you want everyone to know why you are acting the way you are; that is isn’t your personality to be so incredibly down all the time. But then you tell people and they just don’t understand.

    So I think he’s feeling that it was necessary to tell someone, anyone, about why his behavior may have been strange before and now he’s been to therapy and tried to control it, but now everyone knows that he’s got a brain disease and he doesn’t want people feeling sorry for him or treating him like he’s broken. Or the worst bit which is having people say stuff like, “Get over it” or literally just not understanding how serious it actually is.

    Unfortunately I know precisely what he’s going through.

  5. Zoe (the other one) says:

    I love Hugh.

    I don’t think he came across as someone who was whining – he spoke with honesty and it’s nice when people break the taboo of talking about mental illness. It’s so misunderstood.

  6. someone says:

    I remember the was sad..after all, the celebs may have lots of money and privelages, but they are still people..I never miss “HOUSE”..I absolutely love that show..and Hugh.

  7. MSat says:

    He’s so dreamy, depressed or not.

  8. KDRockstar says:

    Come on over and I’ll try to help cure ya.

    OK, I’m curious. Is “whinging” pronounced the same as the American English “whining”? I’ve always wondered.

  9. Kaiser says:

    KD – I actually think the Brits pronounce the “g” in “whinging” – it sounds like something you would do with a power tool.

    MSat – he is dreamy. Esp. with his normal English accent, playing the piano.

  10. BOGART4017 says:

    Any info about depression that reaches the public is an education. Unfortunately there is still a stigma attached to this disease and the treatment thereof. For years i suffered until i was close to suicide before i considered therapy and medication. The silly thing about it was my insurance could have been paying for everything years ago. Needless suffering…

  11. Hieronymus Grex says:

    But does he regret his turns on Blackadder ?

  12. OXA says:

    Hugh needs to lighten up and just BE, poor sod has issues with living up to his Olympic Gold father.

  13. Ophelia says:

    I love him! It’s so not trivial, in fact knowing that people who can conceivably have ‘everything’ can still be depressed just makes me feel less alone in my own depression.

  14. Feebee says:

    @ Le poof: I think Hugh was referring to the “every conceivable blessing that could be bestowed upon a man” including his faith (gag) and family etc. Not just his former good looks.

    I can see how Hugh may think badly of himself for providing TMI in his eyes. He seems to be a pretty great, well grounded guy who wouldn’t like whining or to be perceived as a whinger.

  15. Tia says:

    Depression is very common and many people struggle with this in their lives. He is brave to come out and talk about it, but hopefully it will help someone who may be stuggling to admit it to themselves or family.

  16. caribassett says:

    I think it is important, I am glad he mentioned it. It shows that depression can affect anyone, that people who are suffering through it are not alone, and that it can improve. I find it uplifting,he has come far.

  17. ChristinaT says:

    i know this is such a cliche, and people probably just brush it off… but money does NOT equate happiness… nowhere does it say that acquiring various material possessions is the definition of happiness… i can understand if someone is whining about a particular event too much (like losing a role to someone else or a break up or something… not that they don’t have the right to whine, just not TOO much of it) then i could say just go on with your life and comfort yourself with millions… but when people fall into depression, it’s a psychological process and has nothing to do with the size of your wallet… it’s a very subtle experience to seek the little joys and feel fulfilled in life…

    i, personally, think that if one doesn’t feed their innate human need for sprituality, then they’re bound to exhibit some emotional consequences…

  18. CosVis says:

    @ KDRockstar

    It’s pronounced “win-jing”.

  19. Trashaddict says:

    Duh, of course Hugh recognizes that money doesn’t buy happiness. What he is trying to say is, with all the deprivation in MOST of the world, it’s a pretty pathetic thing when someone who is not in need is whining about their MOOD problems. It’s like complaining that the bus commuters crossing the street are in the way of your limousine and why is your life so miserable??? I think it was great he managed to divulge his depression problems but still has the brains to keep it in perspective.

  20. Charley Kane says:

    There’s a big diff between telling people you’ve had depression problems and the insignificant things other stars whine about, very big diff.

  21. JennaMeow says:

    I am so glad he talked about it. I wish more people in the spotlight would. I think a lot of celebs have depression but cover it up with drug and alcohol abuse. It’s probably more prevalent than we know.

  22. Meg says:

    I read a biography of Hugh Laurie and he’s been having problems with depression for years. As somebody else with clinical depression, I know it’s hard to explain to people how it feels to be depressed and later when you look back on the conversation and (as most people with depression have poor self-esteems) feel like an idiot or think that the person wasn’t interested or didn’t care about what you had to say.

    See, even that sounds whiny.

    I personally will always applaud Hugh Laurie not only for good looks and incredible talent but for his lack of commercialization that you see in celebrities today. Look no further than people like Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers for examples.

  23. This topic is quite hot on the Internet at the moment. What do you pay the most attention to when choosing what to write ?

  24. womanbewise says:

    Hugh needs to worry less about what the world thinks and think more about what Hugh needs.

  25. jana says:

    I think it took guts to talk about and it was the right thing to do. People need to be more aware of depression and stop the critisizm. Depression is a real illness. You can’t ‘just lighten up’ or think possitive thought and make it go away. And I think Hugh didn’t need to apoligize or regret what he said. If it helped someone who was feeling alone then it was worth it.