The Rock Opens Up About His Depression On 'Master Class'

November 13th 2015

Taylor Bell

In an episode of OWN network's "Master Class" Dwayne Johnson opens up about his previous battle with depression.

Before becoming one of Hollywood's A-list actors, Johnson faced a major setback that changed the course of his life.

After leaving the University of Miami, Johnson played in the Canadian Football League for the Calgary Stampeders. But after a short time he was cut and left with no other career options in sight. It was during this time that 23-year-old Johnson started battling a bout of depression while living with his parents.

In dealing with depression, Johnson said this:

"I found that with depression, one of the most important things you could realize is that you're not alone. You're not the first to go through it. You're not the last to go through it. And often times, it happens you just feel like you're alone and you feel like it's only you and you're in your bubble. And I wish I had someone at that time who could just pull me aside [and say], 'Hey, it's gonna be okay. It's gonna be okay.'"

A month and half later he was offered another opportunity to return to football but turned it down. Soon after this, Johnson decided to become a wrestler and the Rock was born.

Dwayne Johnson competing as the Rock

This isn't the first time the action star has gone public about his battle with depression. In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Johnson detailed his rough childhood which included run ins with police, episodes of poverty and an absent father.

Currently an estimated 350 million people suffer from depression worldwide, according to World Health Organization. In 2013, 15.7 million American adults had at least one major depressed episode, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

NIMH depression rate chart

For those battling depression, Johnson offered these words: "You just gotta remember: hold onto that fundamental quality of faith. Have faith that on the other side of your pain is something good."

The full episode airs on November 15 on the OWN Network.