Mind Over Matter: Kid Cudi and Mental Illness in the Music Business
During my usual daily scroll through my Instagram feed, I came across a post via Teedra Moses'that made my heart drop. She posted a screenshot of Kid Cudi’s latest Facebook post which stated that he checked himself into rehab due to “depression and suicidal urges.” I quickly visited his Facebook page and read the post again:
He was very candid in the letter. With the status and success that he holds, I respect him, not only as a celebrity, but as a man for boldly admitting to his condition. Whether he realizes it or not, he inspired so much conversation and awareness on mental health. Also, this news highlights a lesson for many of us: success does not fight depression, love does not fight depression, and most importantly, being rich does not fight depression. Cudi has struggled with depression for most of his life and opened up to Billboard earlier this year:
“I thought about how much of a struggle it has been the past eight years, to be in the news and pretend to be happy when, really, I was living a nightmare. But I can go anywhere, whenever I want.. I have everything I ever dreamed of in terms of stability. But I hadn’t been living that reality, because depression was f---ing me up.
He continued, “In the business, everybody is a f------ cartoon. And every once in a while, someone comes in that’s really f------ human. I like to think of myself as one of those artists. I didn’t feel any rush to fix myself for anyone. If I felt like I needed to write four albums of my madness to feel alright, then so be it. And I knew that whatever I wrote would help somebody somewhere. So it was better getting it out than to keep it bottled up. [Someone dealing with or getting through depression] is a message kids need to hear. Some people deal with things and it takes them a little longer. Being in the public eye is tough.”
The recent news about Cudi hit close to home. Our mission at MUSIK !D TV is to help promote mental health and self-development in the arts. We believe that artists should succeed in life. Period. We hope to offer the necessary tools for artists to handle their musical and personal lives confidently.
Severe depression is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States and also carries the heaviest burden of disability among mental and behavioral disorders, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
Cudi is not the only musician who publicly struggles with depression or other mental illness. Earlier this year, singer-songwriter, Kehlani attempted suicide after being publicly ridiculed for a rumor that she was caught in a love triangle with PARTYNEXTDOOR and Cleveland Cavaliers player Kyrie Irving. Though the outpouring of support was not the same as Cudi’s she also openly admitted to her fans that she was getting help. Side note: Paper Mag published an excellent piece that compared the public’s perception of Kehlani’s depression versus Cudi’s.
There are many other musicians (we can’t name them all) who are standing strong despite of their condition:
Bruce Springsteen - Depression
Sinéad O’Connor - Bipolar Disorder
Ray Davies of The Kinks - Bipolar Disorder
Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys - depression and schizoaffective disorder.
Charles Hamilton - Bipolar Disorder
Demi Lovato - Bipolar Disorder
Paula Abdul – bulimia
Michael Angelakos of Passion Pit – Bipolar Disorder
Barbra Streisand – Social Anxiety Disorder
Eric Clapton - Alcoholism
We at MUSIK !D TV wish Kid Cudi well and commend him for taking the necessary steps to get the help that he deserves.