Letterman Opens Up About His Bout with Depression

CBS News

David Letterman is revealing what prompted him to seek medicinal help for depression and discusses how becoming a father changed his life.

In an interview on Thursday with Charlie Rose for CBS This Morning, Letterman said that even though he was suffering from depression, he chose for years not to take medication "because I thought it would make me loopy or make me hallucinate or make me drowsy."

But the Late Show host told Rose that after going off strong pain medication after a bout with shingles, he felt a "nervous anxiety" that had to be dealt with. "And then I was really screwed. So that's when I said [to my doctor], 'Okay, okay, I'll try anything just to get rid of this depression,'" he said. "Because it was, it's different than, 'Oh, I don't feel good today.' It's different than feeling sad. It's different than feeling blue. It's really like a friend of mine says, it's the world with 20/20 vision."

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On the topic of fatherhood, Letterman said he regretted being "so gosh darn single minded" and not starting a family sooner in life. "I just thought, when the topic would come up, I can't do both. I can't try to have a successful television show and be a father. And I was wrong about that -- because as difficult as being a father is, it's entirely complementary with everything else in your life."

When asked to elaborate, he said his nine-year-old son Harry with wife Regina Lasko has changed his whole outlook on life. "It's like you get your prescription updated. You can
see things that you never saw before." He added that after having kids, you see everything different and "you think of things other than yourself."

After joking about wanting "five or six kids," Letterman did admit he would like to have at least one more. "I have a little boy now, I wish I had a little girl."

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