Having endured bullying all her life, Rozella Mahjrin’s lack of self-confidence pushed her into depression at just 11 years old. In an effort to prove herself to the world, she pushed herself academically, adding more stress to her school days. Later, she struggled with alcohol addiction in her bid to escape from reality. Rozella received a massive wake-up call when she found herself hospitalised for alcohol poisoning. Staring at the possibility of death scared her into cleaning up her act to save herself. She knew that all her actions were temporary measures to escape from the brave front she used to hide her depression.
When Rozella decided to reveal her struggles to the public, she was stunned at the number of young girls who came up to her after the revelation telling her that they related to her story. While their assurances comforted her, she also felt alarmed that so many people were in the same boat as she was, and this empowered her to continue speaking openly about her pain. However, she believes that everyone, not just celebrities should take the lead about voicing out and making a change in the face of mental health.
“Statistics show that one in four people in Malaysia has been affected by mental health issues, but the majority of people still choose to struggle in silence because of the stigma that it has. There’s so much shame when it comes to talking about this, which makes it even more important to speak up.”