I recently saw the movie “A Star Is Born” (Warning: Spoilers ahead) and it made a big impact on me. The film focuses on the relationship between two musicians: A rock star named Jackson Maine and his wife Alli, whom he discovers and encourages to pursue her talents and dreams.
Jackson is a tortured soul. His mother died in childbirth, and his father died when he was 13. About halfway through the movie, we find out that he attempted suicide as a child. Throughout the movie, Jackson struggles with an addiction to alcohol and drugs. His depression has a tight grip on him.
At the end of the movie, post-rehab but still hopeless and depressed, Jackson takes a handful of pills and a belt to the garage and ends his life. The scene is so sad. So tragic. And it hit a chord with me.
Hopeless is a rough place to be. I think it’s about as close to hell on earth that we can get. I remember several years ago, I was struggling with depression and anxiety, and I didn’t see a way out. I was in a hopeless place, and it scared the shit out of me. If you’re feeling that way right now, you’re not alone.
Luckily for me, I had other people who could be my hope while I worked through my struggles and got my life back on track. I had family and friends who loved me. I had a good counselor.
Jackson didn’t have that.
Let Someone Be Your Hope
I felt like yelling at the movie screen: “Let someone be your hope! I know that things feel hopeless right now, but it doesn’t have to be forever. Things can change.”
One of the common aspects of depression is that people’s negative thoughts and evaluations are stable and pervasive. In other words, things won’t ever change for the better. The negativity covers all aspects of life.
Sometimes, if we are in a particularly dark place, we can’t see for ourselves that the future could shift or change. We can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. If you are in a place like that, please reach out for help. Let someone be your hope until you can sort things out. Tomorrow is a new day. Don’t throw it away.
If you are struggling with depression or thoughts of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. They are available 24 hours a day, every day.
By Joshua Hook
Joshua completed his initial Crucible weekend in 2010. He is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of North Texas. Through his writing and speaking, he helps men step forward into healing and growth. Follow Joshua’s blog and download his free e-book ‘A Journey of Healing and Growth’ at www.JoshuaNHook.com
Photo Credit: Leticia Bertin via Creative Commons