Why suicide is more common among celebrities, CEOs and creatives, and how therapy helps

Why suicide is more common among celebrities, CEOs and creatives, and how therapy helps

  • The recent suicides of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade highlight how famous and successful people are more likely to suffer from mental problems than the rest of us, says a psychologist who has treated Hong Kong and China celebrities

The deaths of chef and TV personality Anthony Bourdain and fashion designer Kate Spade by suicide have thrown the spotlight on celebrities and depression. Instead of bringing them happiness and freedom, for many, being sought-after, rich and at the top of their game leads to an identity crisis and ruminations on their self-worth.

Candice Lam Yue-tung, a clinical psychologist who founded Mindcare in Central in 2008, knows first-hand the mental struggles besetting the famous and powerful from her extensive experience of treating celebrities in Hong Kong and China.

While keeping her patients’ identities confidential, Lam says half of them are either celebrities, bank CEOs, or movers and shakers in the political world.

Some celebrities are prone to depression and bipolar disorder due to incessant media and public scrutiny, she adds.