Willow Smith Remembers Mac Miller During 'Red Table Talk' About Mental Illness and Drug UseDecember 18, 2018
Jada Pinkett Smith and guest Kid Cudi also reflect on their histories with depression and suicidal thoughts.
Confronting mental health and mental illness was the subject of the morning on today’s "Red Table Talk," as host Jada Pinkett Smith and guest Kid Cudi both got incredibly candid about their own struggles in the past.
During the conversation, Willow Smith also took the time to remember Mac Miller, who was open about his history of depression before he died of a drug overdose at the age of 26 earlier this year.
"What keeps on coming back is that emotional and mental illness and I feel like I’ve been seeing so much of that recently," said Willow. "Mac Miller passing, that just took me for a loop because so many young people are just dying because of trying to satiate those emotions with drugs."
"I’m seeing it more and I feel like it’s becoming such a huge problem amongst the youth," she continued.
Cudi chimed in saying he knew Miller and his death was "one of those things that was devastating." The rapper went on to call him a "sweet kid" with a "big heart."
While Jada didn’t know Miller personally, she said she believes it’s common to see mental illness "cross over into drugs as a solution," something she could relate to.
"I didn’t know Mac Miller but once again, when I looked at his circumstances, I just felt for him. I knew that could have been me, easily," said Jada. "I was the same way, in my depression, using ecstasy, using a whole lot, smoking a bunch of weed and trying to find some peace in my mind. I was doing ecstasy because I wanted to party. I was doing ecstasy, weed and a bottle of Courvoisier because I wanted to get lit. I knew I was on the course to addiction."
Speaking more about her own history, Pinkett Smith described how she had "an emotional breakdown" once she achieved a "certain amount of success" in her 20s. Saying she came to the realization that success was not the answer and wouldn’t "make everything okay," Jada added that it actually "made things worse and I became extremely suicidal."
Jada said she was put on Prozac, but once she realized it had "disrupted my sex drive," she dropped the medication. "I was like, look, that’s the only thing I got in my life," she explained. "That’s the one thing, that was the thing that got me off of Prozac."
"Once I got off the Prozac, I went on a long long long journey," she continued. "I learned how to manage it to a certain degree, but it was a struggle. Therapy just didn’t work for me. That’s not to say it’s not a good path. I just had to find my path and now, thankfully, I don’t get depressed."
She also credited her children with keeping her from "doing some self destructive things," saying they "kept me on the path until I could find the answer for myself."
Cudi credited his daughter for helping him get out of his own downward spiral into drugs, which he used to cope with things in his own past he hadn’t yet confronted. "To find my footing, I chose to use drugs," he said of his 2016 substance abuse. "I’m editing these videos,I’m sneaking off, doing cocaine in the bathroom, getting loaded, drinking everyday."
He eventually entered a 30-day treatment facility and has been off drugs for two years. "I was there for a month. It was a lot of talking. And I don’t think I ever really did that in my life, I never thought about, well, why am I depressed," he explained. "I found out it was stuff from years ago, when I was a kid, my father dying when I was 11, then my cousin dying, my favorite uncle dying. It was realizing these things and being okay with it, finding peace with it."
"My daughter is my world, that’s really what helped me snap out of it and get some help," he added. "She’s everything, that’s my little homie."
If you or someone you know needs support, please call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.
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