RHOD: Kary Brittingham Opens Up About Daughter Olivia's Struggle with Depression and Suicidal Thoughts
"After hearing from your kid that they're depressed and suicidal, the hardest and the scariest thing for [me] is: is this going to happen again?" Kary Brittingham said
Kary Brittingham is opening up about her daughter's struggle with depression.
On Tuesday's Real Housewives of Dallas, the reality star, 50, had a raw and vulnerable conversation with her 20-year-old daughter, Olivia, who has been battling depression and suicidal thoughts for "a few years."
"How's your anxiety and everything?" Kary asked.
"Weirdly, it's not as bad at night," said Olivia, who is currently studying fashion. "It's bad during the day. It makes a lot of sense to have it come out of nowhere right now because there are so many things to have anxiety over."
Affirming her daughter, Kary said, "you're very empathetic," and told her: "you take everybody's problems as your own."
"It's a blessing and a curse," admitted Olivia.
Speaking to cameras, Kary explained that "Olivia has been struggling with depression for a few years, which I didn't really know about until last year."
Olivia told her mom that for "a lot of people, it's really hard to tell" that they struggle.
"For me, I didn't know how to act normal because I didn't even feel normal. I just reacted to things," said Olivia. "I didn't really think about things or have any care. For me, I realize that talking about it and telling my parents probably was going to help me most."
Kary then revealed to cameras that she had received a text message from her daughter last year, in which she asked for help and admitted to struggling with suicidal thoughts. "That was the hardest text I've ever gotten," said the Bravo star.
"I wonder if I should've been more like, 'Hey, let's go to lunch,' or, 'How are you doing?'" Kary told Olivia. "I feel like I could've been trying to engage more."
But Olivia shared that "just letting a kid know that you're there for them is really the most you can do."
In the time since she sent the text, Olivia said that her relationship with her mom "is a lot better because I asked for help."
Olivia continued in the confessional: "That day forward, she always checks up with me. You wouldn't think that my mom's voice is a comforting voice to hear, but it's oddly satisfying."
"As tough as 2020 has been with COVID and my business, after hearing from your kid that they're depressed and suicidal, the hardest and the scariest thing for [me] is: is this going to happen again? I pray every night for her to be okay," Kary told cameras.
She assured her daughter: "I'm here and we can work through it and talk about it."
Earlier this month, Kary said that she was "so proud" of Olivia for being open with her struggles.
"I love my baby girl so much and so proud of her," Kary wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of her and Olivia. "She has been struggling with anxiety & depression for a few years now and decided to share her struggles this year to help others 🙏."
The Real Housewives of Dallas airs Tuesdays (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.
If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.