Paul McCartney health: ‘You didn’t talk about it’ Musician discusses his struggles with me

Jimmy Carr’s new book deals with anxiety and depression

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Music icon and The Beatles star, Paul McCartney bravely discussed struggles that both himself and the rest of his bandmates suffered with. Mental health issues are at an all time high and sadly is still a discussion most men battle with. What are the symptoms to spot?

Speaking in an interview with The Sunday Times, McCartney discussed how the bandmates’ mental health was during the height of their fame.

McCartney said he and his bandmates – Ringo Starr and the late John Lennon and George Harrison – were more likely to make fun of their issues in order to hide them.

When probed further regarding if anyone suffered with depression, McCartney said: “Yes, I think so. But you talked about it through your songs.

“You know, John would write. ‘Help! I need somebody,’ and I thought, ‘Well, it’s just a song,’ but it turned out to be a cry for help.”

He went on: “Same kind of thing happened with me, mainly after the break-up of the band.

“All of us went through periods when we weren’t as happy as we ought to be.

“But you know there were a lot of things we had to work through — you didn’t talk about mental health.”

Society’s expectations and traditional gender roles often play a major role in why men are less likely to discuss or seek help for their mental health.

In fact, the Priory Group reported roughly 40 percent of men won’t talk about their mental health.

It was also found that the majority of men claim their mental health is having a negative impact on their work performance, parenting ability and relationships in particular.

In the UK, around one in eight men has a common mental health problem such as depression, anxiety, panic disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

The Mental Health Foundation reported:

  • Three times as many men as women die by suicide
  • Men aged 40-49 have the highest suicide rates in the UK
  • Men report lower levels of life satisfaction than women according to the Government’s national wellbeing survey
  • Men are less likely to access psychological therapies than women: only 36 percent of referrals to NHS talking therapies are for men.

The father-of-five McCartney said the Beatles spoke about their struggles through their songs and was a form of release.

“The whole Beatles thing was just beyond comprehension,” McCartney admitted.

“I was subconsciously crying out for help.”

Symptoms of depression can include continuous low mood, low self-esteem, having no motivation, having little interest in things that once brought you joy or thoughts about harming yourself.

For those suffering with depression or poor mental health, communication is key either via your healthcare professional, a psychiatrist or friends and family.
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