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Jess's Take: Linkin Park and Mental Illness

Welcome to a new installment of Jess's Take. While normally I give my take on television ratings and the state of the television business in general, there are some times where my take could be outside the realm of television. This happens to be one of those times.

Today, I was stunned with the news that Chester Bennington, one of the lead singers of Linkin Park, had died at the age of 41 through the same manner as Soundgarden's Chris Cornell - a suicide by hanging.

Linkin Park was a major part of my life growing up. I started listening to Linkin Park semi-regularly in 2007, when I was an elementary school savage trying to find myself. Linkin Park was one of the bands I have listened to through the tough times. Now, with the song "Heavy", it comes full circle. I don't normally share my struggles outside of my personal blog, but it's time for me to take some time to clear the air.

I have anxiety. It's what I have had for a very long time. Anxiety followed me into college and has now affected me to the point where I break down and cry suddenly without any explanation. This is due to a major life change I've had over the past couple of months. With that being said, it has progressed into depression. Sometimes, the pain and stress of everyday life can be too much and I haven't been coping properly for the past couple of months. I wanted to write this because I want people to know that you're not alone in the struggle.

This leads me to my next point. Actors, musicians, writers, and professional athletes do not just exist for people's entertainment. They are real human beings just like everybody else, just with more money and fame. It's an absolute shame that mental health is still being stigmatized in our society. Anxiety and depression does not discriminate against anyone. We still have a long way to go until we end the stigma that follows with mental illness. 

We don't know what Chester Bennington was going through or what was going on in his mind. Have we ever stopped to think about how comments and reviews can hurt people? Do we even know the motivation behind critically panned "Heavy"? It just goes to show us that even the happiest of souls can go through personal hell to live through another day. 

At the end of the day, he still committed suicide. You never know what goes on in a person's mind until it's too late. If you or someone you know is struggling emotionally, you can call the National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255.