This season, students have dealt with many difficult topics, such as drug abuse, eating disorders and racial inequality. But the conversation between Taisia Adams and Ben Smith about his struggle with depression and numerous suicide attempts was the hardest of the season.
Smith, aged 30, impressed Adams in the eighth episode of the series when he talked about his 10-year fight with bulimia. He got a group meeting because he was vulnerable and Adams was so impressed with Smith that he invited him for a one-on-one interview in Episode Nine.
It was on this date that Smith revealed the depression he faced after serving in the U.S. Army with a broken back. He also stated that he had attempted suicide twice, once in 2018 and again in 2019, before finding a new perspective on life.
I’m 26 years old and I can barely go upstairs, Smith said. I was completely lost. My life was very dark, and I didn’t know how to say I needed anything. The only person I trusted was my sister.
I think we can move on. I made two unsuccessful suicide attempts in 2018 and 2019. I don’t want to use this against you ……. I didn’t want to be here anymore. I didn’t want to burden anyone with problems and I thought the easiest way was not to be there. Luckily, it didn’t work.
Again, Adams was impressed with Smith’s honesty about the darkest moments of his life and gave him a rose to make sure he would go on to the dating part of the show. After a one-on-one call, ABC gave the number of the suicide helpline.
Ben Smith now focuses on his passion for health and nutrition
Smith is currently training at Deuce Gym and a bodybuilding club in Los Angeles, California. His Instagram account is filled with training videos and photos with friends and colleagues at the gym in sunny California.
The ability to directly influence the lives of others is the fuel for his work, development and happiness, according to Smith’s biography on DeuceGym.com. A caring approach to military leadership, daily interactions and good physical condition gave Ben a supernatural ability to meet people wherever they are.
Smith told Adams that the man he is now is not the same man who has struggled with depression in recent years and that by going into therapy he has learned to redirect his life.
Ben Smith writes to his sister to save her life
At the opening of the bulimia debate, Smith said his sister Madeline was the only one he had talked to about his fight.
She saved my life, Smith told Adams in episode eight. I am finally in a place where I feel safe and comfortable with the people where I live and work. I’m very worried about that. It’s just hard for me to let it go.
Smith talked about the important role his sister played again in Episode Nine.
She’s the best person I know, Mr Smith said. She saved my life in more ways than one.
Rendezvous in her hometown is coming up soon, and Smith will start this phase, maybe we’ll meet Madalyn soon. However, it is not yet clear what these visits will look like during the pandemic.
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