Hayden Panettiere still needs treatment for depression, and she's brave for admitting it.

Last October, "Nashville" star Hayden Panettiere checked herself into treatment for postpartum depression.

Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images.


At the time, Panettiere told Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan that she had been living with the illness since the birth of her child in 2014. By opening up about her struggles, she hoped to embolden other women who were suffering from the disease to seek help.

Panettiere made good on her word, completed the program, and headed back to her family and her job.

So ... problem solved. Over and done, right?

Yesterday, the actor announced she would be heading back to rehab.


While heartbreaking, by admitting that she still needs help, Panettiere is courageously acknowledging that depression can be a lifelong battle.

Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images.

Depression is a disease, and unlike strep throat or the flu, treatment doesn't make it go away.

A 2014 study published in the Harvard Review of Psychiatry found that an average of 30% of people who suffer from postpartum depression are still afflicted anywhere between four months and three years after the birth of their child.

More importantly, there's nothing wrong with that.

Like anyone who has a disease, people who suffer from depression can't just "feel better" on command, and Panettiere deserves credit for being blunt about that.

Her timing makes the move especially courageous, now that her show "Nashville" is ending.


Photo by Terry Wyatt/Getty Images.

Many employers consider mental illness a "risk factor" when looking to hire — and very few who challenge their firings under the Americans with Disabilities Act succeed.

While Hollywood might not be the same as most industries, it certainly doesn't have the greatest track record with women who are perceived — for whatever reason — to be "difficult" or demanding, and taking time off to care for herself puts Panettiere at risk of being folded into either of those categories.

Panettiere is potentially putting her career and reputation on the line to make sure she gets the help she needs, and that's a big deal.

No one who suffers from depression should have to justify their decision to seek treatment.

Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images.

By choosing to fight, rather than run away, even at the risk of losing opportunities that might have otherwise come to her, Panettiere is sending a clear message that her health and her family's well-being come first — and that she's not ashamed.

Here's hoping she gets what she needs out of treatment and is able to get back to her life and work soon.

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Comedy legend Carol Burnett once said, "Giving birth is like taking your lower lip and forcing it over your head." She wasn't joking.

Going through childbirth is widely acknowledged as one of the most grueling things a human can endure. Having birthed three babies myself, I can attest that Burnett's description is fairly accurate—if that seemingly impossible lip-stretching feat lasted for hours and involved a much more sensitive part of your body.

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via SNL / YouTube

Christopher Walken is one of the greatest actors of his generation. He's been nominated for an Academy Award twice for best supporting actor, winning once for 1978's "The Deer Hunter" and receiving a nomination for 2002's "Catch Me if You Can."

He's played memorable roles in "Annie Hall," "Pulp Fiction," "Wedding Crashers," "Batman Returns," and countless other films. He's also starred in Shakespeare on the stage and began his career as a dancer.

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Disney has come under fire for problematic portrayals of non-white and non-western cultures in many of its older movies. They aren't the only one, of course, but since their movies are an iconic part of most American kids' childhoods, Disney's messaging holds a lot of power.

Fortunately, that power can be used for good, and Disney can serve as an example to other companies if they learn from their mistakes, account for their misdeeds, and do the right thing going forward. Without getting too many hopes up, it appears that the entertainment giant may have actually done just that with the new Frozen II film.

According to NOW Toronto, the producers of Frozen II have entered into a contract with the Sámi people—the Indigenous people of the Scandinavian regions—to ensure that they portray the culture with respect.

RELATED: This fascinating comic explains why we shouldn't use some Native American designs.

Though there was not a direct portrayal of the Sámi in the first Frozen movie, the choral chant that opens the film was inspired by an ancient Sámi vocal tradition. In addition, the clothing worn by Kristoff closely resembled what a Sámi reindeer herder would wear. The inclusion of these elements of Sámi culture with no context or acknowledgement sparked conversations about cultural appropriation and erasure on social media.

Frozen II features Indigenous culture much more directly, and even addressed the issue of Indigenous erasure. Filmmakers Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck, along with producer Peter Del Vecho, consulted with experts on how to do that respectfully—the experts, of course, being the Sámi people themselves.

Sámi leaders met with Disney producer Peter Del Vecho in September 2019.Sámediggi Sametinget/Flickr

The Sámi parliaments of Norway, Sweden and Finland, and the non-governmental Saami Council reached out to the filmmakers when they found out their culture would be highlighted in the film. They formed a Sámi expert advisory group, called Verddet, to assist filmmakers in with how to accurately and respectfully portray Sámi culture, history, and society.

In a contract signed by Walt Disney Animation Studios and Sámi leaders, the Sámi stated their position that "their collective and individual culture, including aesthetic elements, music, language, stories, histories, and other traditional cultural expressions are property that belong to the Sámi," and "that to adequately respect the rights that the Sámi have to and in their culture, it is necessary to ensure sensitivity, allow for free, prior, and informed consent, and ensure that adequate benefit sharing is employed."

RELATED: This aboriginal Australian used kindness and tea to trump the racism he overheard.

Disney agreed to work with the advisory group, to produce a version of Frozen II in one Sámi language, as well as to "pursue cross-learning opportunities" and "arrange for contributions back to the Sámi society."

Anne Lájla Utsi, managing director at the International Sámi Film Institute, was part of the Verddet advisory group. She told NOW, "This is a good example of how a big, international company like Disney acknowledges the fact that we own our own culture and stories. It hasn't happened before."

"Disney's team really wanted to make it right," said Utsi. "They didn't want to make any mistakes or hurt anybody. We felt that they took it seriously. And the film shows that. We in Verddet are truly proud of this collaboration."

Sounds like you've done well this time, Disney. Let's hope such cultural sensitivity and collaboration continues, and that other filmmakers and production companies will follow suit.

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Gerrymandering is a funny word, isn't it? Did you know that it's actually a mashup of the name "Gerry" and the word "salamander"? Apparently, in 1812, Massachusetts governor Elbridge Gerry had a new voting district drawn that seemed to favor his party. On a map, the district looked like a salamander, and a Boston paper published it with the title The GerryMander.

That tidbit of absurdity seems rather tame compared to an entire alphabet made from redrawn voting districts a century later, and yet here we are. God bless America.

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