Admittedly, we were all a little wrecked after the Game of Thrones‘ finale, either because we couldn’t stand the ending or because we couldn’t bear the relentless countdown until the end of an era. The show’s incredible success is no secret, but the significance of its eight-year run may be lost on those of us who don’t consider the weight of nearly a decade. Eight years is an epoch in and of itself; when the most significant events in our lives can happen in a single moment, imagine the joys and burdens of eight years.
Image via Mashable
Whatever we experienced watching the finale, no one was more wrecked than the cast themselves. Many stars have opened up about their mental health issues since the finale aired-understandable, given that some, our leading ladies in particular, entered the cast when they were young children. Maisie Williams told BBC that she would “tell herself every day that [she] hated [herself],” unable to hold up to the impersonal scrutiny of social media. Sophie Turner revealed that she had depression for “five years” when ruthless comments about her appearance caused her to isolate to the point that she “had no motivation to do anything.”
During the behind-the-scenes documentary The Last Watch, Kit Harington moved fans with his intense reaction to Jon Snow’s ending. Upon learning that he would be the one to kill his lover, Daenerys, and break the wheel in a way unlike any Dany had envisioned, he became overwhelmed. He gave an audible gasp—and then, the actor burst into tears.
— Joe Weaver (@jorywea) May 27, 2019
“I blubbed my eyes out,” Harington confessed on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. “I cried. I cried, yeah.”
Two days after the documentary’s release, Harington’s rep made an official statement to People: “Kit has decided to utilize this break in his schedule as an opportunity to spend some time at a wellness retreat to work on some personal issues.” While these personal issues do include alcohol abuse, “stress” is a major factor in his decision to enter a luxury rehab facility. Page Six reported that he’s been at Connecticut facility Privé-Swiss for around a month, arriving before the finale aired. Though the price is high—$120,000 in all—the emotional cost of untreated psychological illness can be far steeper.
Image via Perez Hilton
These “emotional issues,” of course, have been going on for far longer than a month. After portraying the character for eight years, Harington began to experience identity conflicts. “I took off the costume, and it felt like my skin was being peeled away,” he told Variety, describing the change he felt when shedding his Jon Snow haircut. “I was very emotional. It felt like someone was shedding me of something.”
Though fans are sorry to see Harington go through these struggles, we are all grateful that he’s seeking treatment.
Featured Image via Digital Spy