SNL’s Bowen Yang Is ‘Great’ After Mental Health Challenges

SNL’s Bowen Yang Says His Mental Health Is ‘Great’ After ‘Bad Bouts of Depersonalization’

Bowen Yang
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Saturday Night Live’s Bowen Yang is in a much better place after going through a difficult time.

“My mental health is great,” Yang, 33, told Page Six on Saturday, December 2. “I had a really rough patch, and people were very patient with me. It’s hard, but you know, I barreled through. I powered through.”

In July, the comedian announced that he planned to take a short break from his and Matt Rogers’ podcast, “Las Culturistas,” for the sake of his mental health.

“Taking a very short break from [“Las Culturistas”],” he wrote via his Instagram Story at the time. “Bad bouts of depersonalization are f–king me up bad, but I am doing my best to get better! Please take care.” (Depersonalization causes people to see themselves outside their body or sense things that are not real, per the Mayo Clinic.)

Later that month, Yang returned to the podcast and shared more details about what led him to take a brief hiatus.

“I feel really good. I’m getting better,” he told listeners at the time. “I think there are specific things that I have to do. … It literally was Valley of the Dolls for a second.’”

SNL’s Bowen Yang Says His Mental Health Is ‘Great’ After ‘Bad Bouts of Depersonalization’
Will Heath/NBC

Yang went on to explain that his antidepressant medication, Wellbutrin, was “not working” for him anymore, especially as he dealt with anxiety related to travel for Wicked, which filmed in London. (He plays Pfannee in the upcoming movie musical.)

“I was on Wellbutrin and — full transparency — I got a low dose of Adderall just to help with the travel, to help with adjusting to the hours,” he explained. “I was talking to some friends last night about how Wellbutrin really is not doing it for a lot of people. And if it’s working for you, God bless. But Wellbutrin isn’t for me.”

Although Yang said in July that he was doing much better, he noted that he is still continuing on his journey of learning about mental health.

“This is a self-knowledge journey that we’re on, for me at least,” he said. “We’ll just leave it at that.”

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Yang has previously been open about the trauma he experienced growing up, including being forced into gay conversion therapy by his parents as a teenager.

“I think ultimately that made me value and, in a literal sense, appreciate what I’m able to withstand and survive. You get this sense that you can overcome,” he told Rolling Stone in a June interview. On Saturday, Yang added that he is now in a “healthy place” with his parents.

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