Adam Deacon: Bafta success contributed to my mental breakdown

·Contributor
·3 min read
<p>Adam Deacon shares his own experiences with mental health and why mental health services need improvement.</p>
Adam Deacon has admitted that awards success in his career contributed to his mental breakdown. (ITV/Good Morning Britain)

Adam Deacon has said winning a Bafta contributed to his mental breakdown because he felt lost after the initial high.

The Kidulthood star – who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder six years ago – won the Bafta Rising Star Award in 2012 and believed he was destined for Hollywood, only to feel shunned by the industry.

Deacon, 38, told Good Morning Britain: "I was quite naive, you know, when I won that Bafta. 

"I thought that Hollywood was gonna come calling, and if I’m being honest, there was so much going on behind the scenes and I faced a lot, there was a lot going on, and at the same time I don’t think the industry knew what to do with me, so it did affect my mental health.

Read more: Adam Deacon 'I suffered lockdown breakdown'

"It was like this massive high, thinking that I was gonna be on massive film sets to not working at all, so it was a weird time. 

"I’m just happy it’s all over and I’ve been given a second chance now."

British actor Adam Deacon poses with the Rising Star Award at the BAFTA British Academy Film Awards at the Royal Opera House in London on February 12, 2012.  AFP PHOTO / LEON NEAL (Photo credit should read LEON NEAL/AFP via Getty Images)
Adam Deacon won the Bafta Rising Star Award in 2012. (Getty Images)

Last year Deacon suffered another breakdown during lockdown, triggered by losing a friend to coronavirus.

He is now retraining to become an NHS mental health worker in the same hospital where he was treated as a patient after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Watch: Adam Deacon has urged anyone struggling with their mental health to talk to someone

Deacon said: "When I had my struggles I found it hard to connect to anyone who's been through it... no one from my background, from a council estate, so I knew when I got better I wanted to help."

And he emphasised the importance of talking – insisting there is no shame in men admitting they need help.

Deacon said: "As a man you don’t want to come across as weak, you want to come across as a strong man, so it took ages to get help – but just know there’s light at the end of the tunnel."

He added: "You can't wait for it all to go wrong to get help."

Adam Deacon has retrained as an NHS mental heath support worker. (Getty Images)
Adam Deacon has retrained as an NHS mental heath support worker. (Getty Images)

Deacon rose to fame after starring in Noel Clarke’s films Kidulthood and Adulthood, and in 2011 directed his own spoof of the movies, Anuvahood.

Deacon was found guilty of harassment without violence in 2015 after a public feud with Clarke on Twitter.

In 2016 Deacon was arrested over claims he had been threatening members of the public in London armed with a knife and machete. 

He was found not guilty of affray and possessing an offensive weapon after the jury accepted he was mentally ill and not responsible for his actions.

Read more: Adam Deacon opens up about his struggle with bipolar disorder

Deacon opened up to Stephen Fry about his bipolar diagnosis in a 2016 BBC documentary.

If you are in need of emotional support you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email jo@samaritans.org, visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website, www.samaritans.org.

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