Armie Hammer Reflects on the "Wake-Up Call" That Led Him to Seek Help

The Social Network actor Armie Hammer opens up in a video interview about his mental health struggles amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

By Corinne Heller Oct 28, 2020 5:34 PMTags
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Like millions of people this year, Armie Hammer has not been okay. And that's okay.

The 34-year-old actor, who was most recently seen in the Rebecca film reboot, spoke at British GQ's 2020's GQ Heroes event about his mental health struggles amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The video interview was posted on Wednesday, October 28.

"I think like everyone else on the planet, I felt like the rug was ripped from under my feet and I felt like I could feel it happening in slow motion, like the rug was just being ripped from my feet and I was falling face-first and I was gonna smash my face on the ground," Hammer told the outlet. "I felt like I was in a state of like, free fall almost. Like it was just, it was really difficult."

"I had a wake-up call one day," he later said. "I had a very intense wake-up call one day and I realized that I needed more help than I realized. So I called a friend of mine, Brendan, who works in mental health and I was like, 'Dude, it's not good. It's not good for me,' and he goes, 'i know, it's not good for anyone,' and I go, 'Yeah, but really not good for me, like I'm having a really hard time. I don't know what the answer to this is.' And he ended up getting me on the phone with a therapist who I started working with multiple times a week just to get me through sort of like the crisis aspect of what was going on."

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Hammer says he continues to speak to his therapist at least once a week.

"I think that this has been a very interesting time where when we stripped away everything that society said, 'Oh, you can distract yourself with going out to dinner,' 'You can distract yourself with night clubs,' 'You can distract yourself with pubs,' 'You can distract yourself with whatever,'" Hammer told British GQ. "When that was stripped away, we were stuck dealing with ourselves. And I think a lot of people realized that they didn't like what themselves looked like. They didn't like where they'd gotten to, and I was in that position as well and I decided to just take whatever steps I could to make a difference and to help myself."

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"I can't be the best father that I can be if I'm not the best version of myself," continued the actor, who shares two children with estranged wife Elizabeth Chambers. The couple filed for divorce in July 2020 after 10 years of marriage. "I can't be the best friend, I can't be the best actor, I can't be any of that if I'm not actually a good, healthy, functioning version of myself. And having the time to sit with myself in quarantine made it painfully clear that I've got some improvement to do and that's the goal, that's the journey."


Ari Perilstein/Getty Images for Feld Entertainment

Hammer also addressed his celebrity privilege.

"I'm self-aware enough to know that an actor who's done well for himself and blah blah blah, like, 'Oh, him complaining about his life, well f--k that guy.' It's like, yeah, I get it. I get it. I get that you have a right to that opinion, but at the same time, when you complain about your life, you're right. And when that person complains about their life, they're right and when that person complains about their life, they're right. You don't get to gatekeep people's suffering. Everyone suffers in different ways and that's okay."

"Suffering is not the bad thing," he said. "Everyone will suffer. That is basically a tenet of every major religion, ever. Life is suffering. Life is hard. People's suffering look differently, but that doesn't negate their own suffering or how it feels to them."

Watch the full video on GQ online.

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