In an interview to promote her role in the new touring production of “Fela!,” Michelle Williams – one third of Destiny’s Child alongside Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland – revealed that she has only recently emerged from years of suffering from moderate depression.
Her dark cloud lifted thanks to exercise, therapy and positive thinking.
“I’ve dealt with depression,” the 32-year-old told The AP during a break in “Fela!” rehearsals. “I had to choose to get out of bed and do whatever I needed to do to be happy.”
Williams says she suffered her first bout of depression at 15 or 16 and has managed to avoid medication. She is speaking out for the first time about her battle to encourage others to seek help.
“We’re taught, ‘Just go to church and pray about it. The Lord is going to heal you.’ Well, in the meantime, I believe God-gifted people, physicians, doctors, therapists – that’s your healing. Take advantage of it,” she said. ”Go see a professional so that they can assess you. It’s OK if you’re going through something. Depression is not OK, but it is OK to go get help.”
Williams will travel with “Fela!” throughout its 16-city tour, starting at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 29. By summer, it will have stopped in Miami, Atlanta, Cleveland, Dallas, Los Angeles, Seattle and Nashville.
Also on Jan. 29, Destiny’s Child releases “Love Songs,” a collection of previously released songs as well as a new track co-written by Williams, “Nuclear,” the group’s
first new recording since 2004.