“What I would say to my younger self is A. You made it – Yay! B. You are very brave. You are very, very brave. And I wouldn’t change a thing on your path, because you are going to end up where I am. And I love where I am. I will also say though that the threat and fear of the pain is always much worse than the actual pain itself and that is what I am coming to find. Also, I am sending you a really big hug and a really big kiss. I love you younger self,” Welcome to the Dollhouse actress Heather Matarazzo says in the moving video below.
Matarazzo is sharing her advice on depression and suicidal ideation with her younger self in a personal, new video for The Child Mind Institute’s#MyYoungerSelf mental health awareness campaign.
Every day this May, a different celebrity is sharing an inspiring, homemade cell phone video, speaking to their younger self – and to kids struggling today – about overcoming a mental health or learning disorder. The Child Mind Institute’s #MyYoungerSelf campaign is focused on ending the stigma attached to mental health and learning disorders, and encouraging every young person to get the help they need and deserve.
An estimated one in five American children have, or once had, a disorder such as depression, anxiety, or ADHD — more than the number of children with cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined. In spite of the magnitude of the problem, lack of awareness and entrenched stigma keep the majority of these young people from getting help. Children and adolescents struggling with these disorders are at risk for academic failure, substance abuse, and a clash with the juvenile justice system — all of which come at tremendous cost to them, their families and communities.
The first two years of the #MyYoungerSelf campaign reached millions, featuring high-profile figures including Emma Stone (a Child Mind Institute board member), Sarah Silverman, Tim Howard, Lena Dunham, Michael Phelps, Temple Grandin, Henry Winkler, Tommy Hilfiger, Brandon Marshall and Jesse Eisenberg.
Watch Matarazzo below.
Heather Matarazzo is an American actress who broke through in the role of Dawn Wiener in the 1995 film Welcome to the Dollhouse. She played Lilly in The Princess Diaries series. #MyYoungerSelf by Child Mind Institute is an anti-stigma campaign. “We are grateful to Heather for her willingness to open up about her childhood experience with depression and suicidal ideation.“
ABOUT CHILD MIND INSTITUTE As an independent, national nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders, we deliver the highest standards of care, advance the science of the developing brain, and empower parents, professionals, and policymakers to support children when and where they need it most.