Award-winning journalist TJ Manotoc spent some time in the psych ward when he was a teenager. That’s the big reveal in the video he recently uploaded on YouTube entitled “You Will Be Alright.”
The video’s description TJ himself wrote says that it is about a time in his life when he went through depression and anxiety disorders. As to why he made the video, he explains, “27 years ago when I went through my first episode, I met a man named Max Ricketts, and he went through hell much worse than I did and yet he survived and eventually lived a happy and normal life.
Max made it part of his life’s mission to share his story and counsel those who were in the dark like he once was. As a journalist, I have lost count how many stories of suicide and depression I have reported on and I feel it’s about time it’s talked about not just in the context of someone dying, but also in the context of giving hope. Max gave me hope that I too, one day, could be like him, alive and well.
And this time, it’s my turn to pay it forward. Coming out and sharing my story and in a very visual and dramatic manner may seem a bit much for some, but I know in my heart my story can touch some lives. And if I save a life or two in the process, it will be all worth it. To sum it up, my message is clear, YOU WILL BE ALRIGHT.”
In the video, TJ encourages depression sufferers to help themselves as “It’s up to you really.”
He likens beating depression with putting one’s two feet in the middle of a seesaw – “You make sure you don’t fall on the left and you don’t fall on the right. There’s always that one spot for each of your feet. The aim is to always find that balance. There will be external factors that might shove you off your balance but you know where to stand and you know where to tilt it back-to-back. Remember that happy spot and always yearn to be there.”
The video is a must-watch for sufferers of the condition as well as their families and friends.
If you need help or someone you know does, call Hopeline, a 24/7 suicide prevention hotline, at (02) 804-HOPE (4673) and 0917 558 HOPE (4673) or text 2919 (toll-free number for all GLOBE and TM subscribers). Know more at http://www.ngf-hope.org/contact-us/