Pete Davidson jocularly addressed his Instagram post from last month that had alarmed many as possibly suicidal, kibitzing about it with friend and fellow comic John Mullaney on this weekend's "Saturday Night Live."
In a "Weekend Update" segment that began with co-anchor Colin Jost, 36, introducing commentator Davidson, 25, with a "How are you Pete?," Davidson replied, "I'm great. As you know I've had a really crazy month and I want to talk about something that matters a lot to me."
"OK," Jost bit. "Mental health?"
"No," said Davidson, "the new Clint Eastwood movie, 'The Mule.' "
From that comedic non sequitur, Davidson went on to say, "So I brought someone who saw 'The Mule' with me, it means a lot to us: Comedian and 'Mule' appreciator John Mullaney!"
Mullaney, 36, came on and after a moment explained, "I've been spending a lot of time with Pete to try to show him you can have a life in comedy that is not insane. A sober, domestic life."
"Yeah," replied Davidson, "and after observing John's life, I publicly threatened suicide!" When the studio audience laughed, he chuckled along and said, "I'm sorry I know I shouldn't make that joke. But it is funny."
"Pete, Pete, look at me," said Mullaney. "Look me in the eye: You are loved by many … and we are glad you are OK. … Now back to 'The Mule.' "
On Dec. 15, Davidson — whose whirlwind romance with and engagement to singer Ariana Grande ended as abruptly as it began — had posted an alarming message on his since-removed Instagram account: "I really don't want to be on this earth anymore. I'm doing my best to stay here for you but I actually don't know how much longer I can last. All I've ever tried to do was help people. Just remember I told you so," followed by a heart emoji.
Hours after issuing the concerning Instagram post, Davidson appeared onstage in that night's "Saturday Night Live" to introduce musical guests Miley Cyrus and Mark Ronson, featuring Sean Lennon.
Davidson has been public about his struggles with mental health, including depression and his 2017 diagnosis with borderline personality disorder (BPD). The National Alliance on Mental Illness says BPD is "a condition characterized by difficulties regulating emotion."
"This means that people who experience BPD feel emotions intensely and for extended periods of time, and it is harder for them to return to a stable baseline after an emotionally triggering event," states the organization.
Grande, in since-deleted tweets, had immediately addressed Davidson after his alarming post in December and offered emotional support, while newly elected Texas Congressman Dan Crenshaw, to whom Davidson had apologized for jokes about the injured former Navy SEAL's eyepatch, reached out to him and the two spoke by phone.