Colton Haynes published two very different personal journal entries — one from November 2014 and another from two years later — in Paper magazine to show how far he’s come in his mental health journey and the importance of seeking help.
“Something’s been off recently. I honestly wake up after 5 hours of sleep wide awake. It’s probably from the bottle of wine I drank before I finally fell asleep/passed out or the amount of pills I’d had. I read up on why I’m experiencing numbness and lack of circulation in my hands and feet and it’s due to the stimulants I’ve been taking for quite some time now. It causes the blood flow to move toward the heart therefore removing it from the lesser needed places like my hands and feet. What I don’t realize is that I will stay in the same place sitting down for 5 hours and have no idea ’cause I’m so focused but with nothing to do, nothing to create. I’m a vampire. A shell. Wishing I was the old Colton. The person who used to love going out and talking to my family/friends.”
He went on, yearning for the person he was before depression:
“Now I’m so closed off to the world that I can’t even get up enough courage to go in public. I’m afraid of people and have become agoraphobic. When I do leave the house it’s for work, the liquor store, or to grab coffee and an occasional sandwich from the store to suppress the hunger.”
The 28-year-old finished:
“Why can’t I just be happy in the now? In my current situations…I’m always searching for the next thrill, the next break, the next job. My life is a drug…I’m always chasing the next high. To the public eye, my possibilities are endless but in my mind…I’m fading away and battling to hide the pain and emotion that has plagued me my entire life. I’ve cheated, lied, & finally owned up to it. I actually accomplished something that could have me set for life. I have money but I am lonely…this is my fault though. I don’t want to let anyone in.”
Fast forward to November 12, 2016, and you can tell a drastic difference in the model’s attitude toward life after the decision to seek help:
“I’m finally in a position where I can say I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. I’ve accomplished so much with so little and my smile is finally not forced. I’ve taken control of my own life for the first time and won’t ever let anyone silence me or my passions ever again. I’m finally free. I’m successful. I’m independent. I’m still short but that won’t change lol. I think I’m funny even if others don’t haha. But most of all…I’m outspoken.”
The Arrow star concluded with a call to action:
“Don’t be afraid to seek help. There are so many people out there who put their jobs first and their mental health last…and trust me…it will creep up on you. There are so many amazing people out there who can help with anxiety and other mental health issues…please don’t be afraid and know that it gets better.”
What a powerful story!
My truth for @papermagazineA photo posted by Colton Haynes (@coltonlhaynes) on Dec 18, 2016 at 11:34pm PST
You can read the rest of Colton’s testimony HERE.
If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, don’t hesitate to call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.[Image via FayesVision/WENN.]