California native, Maurice Benard played mobster "Sonny Corinthos" since 1993 and has received many awards for his performance. A series regular on General Hospital, Maurice has a new book out about his life and struggles with his mental health.
General Hospital Star Maurice Benard's New Book
Benard told People about his fears of being open about his bipolar disorder in Hollywood because "an acting coach told me that if I said I was bipolar or mentally ill, I wouldn't get cast." He was prescribed lithium at a young age and he said it helped him function and "was a miracle drug".
Apparently, it worked so well that at one point he thought he may not need it anymore and chose to stop taking the lithium which led to his breakdowns and self-destruction so he eventually got back on lithium.
All My Children's Maurice Benard, The Mental Health Advocate
He has been public about his disorder since 2000 and has been working with incredibly important groups like the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance and the National Alliance on Mental Illness. He and countless other celebrities are being candid about their struggles with mental health to break the stigma attached to it and encourage fans to ask for help when needed.
Benard said, "When I speak out, people tell me they feel like they’re not alone."