“Saturday Night Live” comic Pete Davidson says he was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder some months ago.
Davidson, 23, who has spoken previously of mental health issues related to the death of his firefighter father during the Sept. 11, 2001, World Trade Center attacks, explained on comedian Marc Maron’s podcast Monday that last fall he “started having these mental breakdowns where I would like freak out . . . and then not remember what happened after.” He described incidents of “blind rage” followed by “no memory of it. And then later on I would remember it like in pictures, kind of, and like kind of remember it like in a fog. I wouldn’t know what happened till after I broke something or after I came to.”
Due to smoking marijuana on a daily basis, partly to help alleviate symptoms of Crohn’s disease, Davidson entered rehab in December. He was given medication for possible bipolar disorder and started taking it, along with smoking weed, upon his exit from rehab. But within two months, “I was smoking weed every day . . . and like I had a really bad mental breakdown. So I freaked out and I was like, ‘It has to be weed.’ ” He then announced publicly that he had “quit drugs. I should’ve just kind of said, ‘I’m quitting weed,’ because now people think I do drugs. So like I’m very embarrassed at this point. . . . Everybody was telling me, ‘Weed is a drug, you’re a drug addict, you smoke weed all the time,’ and I was like, ‘I guess I am a drug addict.’ ”
He subsequently quit smoking, drinking and pot, which turned out not to help. “I still felt the same. . . . And I found out I have BPD, which is borderline personality disorder,” the symptoms of which include severe depression and feeling, he says, as if “everybody hates me, I’m gonna lose my friends, I’m gonna lose my girlfriend, my family hates me.” But new psychiatric medications and dialectical behavior therapy to try to reroute patterns of thinking are “working, slowly but surely,” he says.
While reflecting that, “This has been the worst year of my life,” he is preparing for the new season of “SNL” on a positive note. “I always thought something was wrong. And then when you find something is actually wrong, it’s like very reassuring.”