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Addiction And Depression Connection

August 12, 2014, 10:13 PM by Sammi Bjelland

Addiction And Depression Connection

The death of Robin Williams this week has many people talking about depression and addiction -- two things Williams openly struggled with.

We spoke with an addiction specialist to find out how the two are connected and what can be done to help.

Williams is one on a long list of celebrities who publicly battled addiction in their lifetime. But it's not just famous people who struggle with addiction issues.

"Addiction doesn't care how much money you have in the bank. Which is a prime example when we look at the Robin Williams story. You hear a lot of, 'How does this happen? The guy had it all. The man was a genius. How can this possibly happen?' But we need to move past that. Because those sorts of questions are what keeps the stigma and the shame in place," Julie Schoolmeester, Executive Director at Face It Together Sioux Falls, said. 

While each person's story is different, Julie Schoolmeester with Face It Together Sioux Falls says that shame from addiction can contribute to mental health issues.

"I think if you spoke with, if we had 10 people that suffered from addiction in the room, you'd be hard pressed to find someone who wouldn't acknowledge that they dealt with depression and or anxiety along the way," Schoolmeester said. 

Williams spent time in rehab, and most recently went to a clinic in Minnesota.

Even though his story ended tragically, Schoolmeester says no matter how many times you've tried, there are always more options to find help.

"Don't get caught up in the fact, 'Well, I've tried to get help once. I've tried to get help twice and nothing has worked.' The fact of the matter is, you just have to keep trying. And just keep reaching out and know that there are resources available," Schoolmeester said.

Schoolmeester says Face It Together can help you fight your addictions and find the right resources to battle any mental health issues as well.

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