After battling mental health and having suicidal thoughts, Zachary Levi has revealed he once had a “complete mental breakdown” which sent him to a psychiatric ward five years ago.
The actor spoke candidly about his three-week stint on the ward, telling Elizabeth Vargas on her ‘Heart of the Matter’ podcast, “I struggled with this stuff most of my life. I didn’t know that I was struggling with these things until I was 37, about five years ago, and I had a complete nervous breakdown.”
The “Shazam!” star, 41, said he had a flawed upbringing, saying there was vitriol” and “a lot of shouting” in his home. He turned to “sex, drugs or alcohol” for entertainment.
“The irony is that alcohol can give you this temporary relief, but the next day it increases that anxiety tenfold,” he said in the interview obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. “So you come running back for more, and it just becomes this vicious cycle.”
Over time, his anxiety got worse, he even had panic attacks over something as simple as eating.
“I’m sitting in my truck, and I remember vividly standing behind the wheel, and I was shaking back and forth, like I was almost trying to get myself out of what was going on, and I was just crying I I’m just crying. I’m like, ‘God, help me,'” he recalled.
After having suicidal thoughts, he went to the emergency room, which led to the psychiatric ward.
“The lies are whispering in my ear, and the failure that I felt was enough to be like, ‘Zach, I feel like you’re not going to make it,'” he said. he said.
The psychiatric ward saved his life.
“I think one of the most important things, at least for me, is to take my thoughts captive,” he said. “Our minds are so powerful, but they’re so easily, so easily hacked if we don’t really say, ‘Oh wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. I’m doing it again. I’m starting to talk. I’m starting to be tough. or self-critical. I’m starting to judge where I’m at in my life.'”