In a recent interview, Ashley Judd recalled her mother Naomi Judd’s battle with mental illness. Ashley said that her mother was “doing the best she could” but that it was a “struggle.” Ashley also spoke about how she and her sister, Wynonna Judd, handled their mother’s illness.
She said that they tried to be ” supportive” and “understanding.” However, she also said that it was “difficult” to see her mother struggling. Ashley concluded by saying that she is “proud” of her mother for how she has dealt with her illness.
View this post on Instagram
When you are a child, it might be challenging to recognise when one of your parents is having difficulties. On this week’s episode of bereavement specialist David Kessler’s podcast, Healing with David Kessler, actress Ashley Judd disclosed her mother Naomi Judd’s struggle with mental illness.
Judd added of her 76-year-old Country Music Hall of Fame mother, who committed suicide on April 30 this year following a protracted mental health battle, “I look back on my upbringing and I realise I grew up with a mom who had an undiagnosed and untreated mental disease.” And there are various behavioural manifestations, interactions, flights of fancy, and decisions she made that I understand were an expression of the disease. I realise this, am aware of her pain, and can now appreciate that she was doing the best she could and would have done things differently if she could.
Ashley said she came to the realisation over time that she wasn’t her mother’s “cause,” just as many kids of parents with mental health disorders do, and that she also couldn’t “control it” or “fix it.” Because of this, when her mother passed away, she claimed that the terrible news was accompanied with a sense of serenity.
Ashley spoke of herself and her half-sister Wynonna, Naomi’s singing partner in The Judds, saying, “My most ardent wish for my mother is that when she transitioned, she was hopefully able to let go of any guilt or shame that she carried for any shortcomings she may have had in her parenting of my sister and me.” “Because unquestionably from my end, everything was forgiven a long time ago.”
The Berlin Station singer also made a very significant point on the terminology we use to refer to suicide, suggesting that in order to eliminate the stigma associated with the former, we should abandon the term “committed” in favour of the phrase “died by suicide.”
According to Judd, “‘Committed’ [suicide] originates from this hierarchy of penal infractions, and committed to a facility or an asylum. “How fortunate we are,” I say, “because I think a person with mental illness is attempting to get some respite from or escape something that perhaps we cannot grasp, create, or envision for ourselves.”