Sarah Silverman isn't ashamed to discuss depression. Here's why.

Silverman sheds her comedic persona in a performance that hits close to home.

I recently had the chance to interview Sarah Silverman to chat about her latest film.

The movie is called "I Smile Back," and it's a dark, powerful, honest story about a woman struggling with addiction and depression.

Silverman — for those who may not be familiar — is an Emmy-winning, Grammy-nominated comedian and actress. When I was offered the opportunity to interview her about the topics covered within the film, I jumped at the chance.


Silverman stars as Laney Brooks in "I Smile Back." Photo by Broad Green Pictures.

Here are three things I learned in my interview with Silverman.

1. She's been getting a lot of press lately for opening up about depression. But she's actually been open about it for a long time.

Just a few weeks back, Glamour published a deeply personal interview with Silverman in which she gave some really specific details about her struggle with depression.

But really, she's been really open about her relationship with depression for more than a decade.

In a 2005 interview with Slate, Silverman even spoke openly about her depression and treatment plan, which included a prescription for Zoloft.

"I went through [severe depression] from 13 to 16. Then, when I was 22, it hit again really hard. So when I was 23 or 24, my mom and her sister, who's a psychologist, talked to me about [seeking treatment] ... I go to this psychiatrist every six months, like you're supposed to, to make sure you're on the right track. I've mentioned to him, like 'I feel great, I feel so stable. After all these years, I wonder what it would be like to be free of it, this medicine.' And he's like, 'Why? If someone has diabetes, they don't say, OK, let's see what it's like to not take insulin.'"

10 years later, she told me that Zoloft, along with therapy, continues to be the treatment path that works best for her.

2. She prepared for this dark role by using her own personal experience and the experiences of people around her.

Her character in "I Smile Back" is very different from any of her other on-stage and on-screen personas, so I asked about how she emotionally prepared for the role.

"I had certain parts of myself to use as a resource," she told me. "I have my own relationship with depression and anxiety. ... I had a lot of really great, open, loving resources."

3. She's a firm believer in personal growth and self-improvement.

Many people know Silverman first and foremost as a comedian — and a controversial one at that. Her jokes have tackled some really taboo topics like race, religion, and sexual assault in ways that sometimes resulted in her being on the receiving end of some backlash.

Photo by Broad Green Pictures.

But she's not being offensive for offensiveness' sake.

"I'm a comic that offends people sometimes," she tells me. "I don't mean to, but that's just a part of it. I make my own choices, from my own gut, what my insides feel like, what I feel is funny, what I want to say, and whether I feel good about saying that or not. If I feel bad in my gut, I don't say it."

She went on to discuss how she moved on from saying "That's so gay" to describe something as being uncool. "Is it that hard to change with the times? It took about a day and a half for me to find new words for 'gay.'"

In a 2012 interview with WebMD, she opened up about the balance her growth personally and professionally.

"I don't think that the pain is something you have to maintain as a kind of fuel. Some comics may think that way, but I'll take happiness over a really dark, good, angry joke. I think it's worth trying to find happiness or be less miserable. Also, because if you don't keep growing as a person, you can't grow as a comedian. And then you're just kind of the same. Either you don't find success or you become a caricature of yourself."

She gave a bit of a summary of growth in that Glamour article, too, saying, "My stand-up has evolved along with me, from the dumb, arrogant vessel I used in [past shows]."

So, why does it matter that Silverman's so open about her depression? Because there's still a *lot* of stigma.

There's some major stigma that surrounds anything to do with mental health. A 1996 National Mental Health Association survey found that 54% of people "think of depression as a sign of personal or emotional weakness." A 2002 survey found 17% of people "see taking medications (for problems with emotions, nerves, or mental health) as a sign of weakness. In 2004, a study found that 15% of respondents "see therapy as a sign of character weakness."

The only way to fight stigma is to speak out, and to see someone as successful as Silverman embrace her relationship with depression can do a lot to help change public opinion.

You can watch my interview with Sarah Silverman below.

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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

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The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

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The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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