11 Famous People Who Have Struggled with Anxiety
by Ken Goodman, LCSW
Anxiety doesn’t play favorites. It can affect anyone. In fact, more than 40 million adults in the United States suffer with an anxiety disorder; that’s 18% of the population. In spite of these disorders being so common, you might not know anyone who suffers. Or so you think.
Some of the most famous, rich, and successful people in the world suffer from anxiety, just like anyone else might.
A young star refused to sing in public for almost 30 years after she forgot her lyrics while performing at a concert in 1967. That young singer was Barbra Streisand. To help control her anxiety, she began taking anti-anxiety medication and seeing a therapist. She is arguably one of the most successful entertainers of all time, yet Barbra battled anxiety for decades.
She is not alone. Here’s a list of 10 more celebrities and the anxiety disorder(s) they’ve struggled with:
- Howie Mandel: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Mysophobia (fear of germs)
- Johnny Depp: Panic Disorder and Coulrophobia (fear of clowns)
- LeAnn Rimes: Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Kim Basinger: Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Agoraphobia (fear of being out in public)
- David Beckham: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Ataxophobia (fear of disorder or untidiness)
- Whoopi Goldberg: Aviophobia (fear of flying)
- Emma Stone:Panic Disorder
- Alec Baldwin: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Donny Osmond: Social Anxiety Disorder
- Adele: Panic Disorder and Social Anxiety Disorder
As you can see, being famous and successful doesn’t prevent you from having an anxiety disorder. But one thing you can learn from these celebrities is that nearly all of them sought help. They realized that their anxiety was a problem, and they took steps to conquer it.
If you are one of the 40 million adults with an anxiety disorder, take heart. You are definitely not alone, and as this list shows, you can have an anxiety disorder and still be successful…no matter what you choose to do in life. Let the successes of these celebrities inspire and motivate you to get the help needed to overcome the suffering.
Here are a few resources for additional information about anxiety disorders:
ADAA.org: Anxiety and Depression Association of America
IOCDF.org: International OCD Foundation