Robin Williams’ son coped with the trauma of losing his dad by helping to educate prison inmates.
Zak Williams, 36, opened up about the 2014 tragedy, during an online interview over the weekend (17-18Aug19), revealing he turned to aid work to deal with the pain of his dad’s suicide.
“I was very traumatised after my dad’s death and found that teaching financial literacy in prison helped me heal and cope with the trauma,” he said. “After that I found that being vulnerable and open about my struggles seemed to actually help others. So, I just kind of kept on doing it. I love it as I find it healing personally.”
Zak also channelled his difficult experience into his efforts to run mental health support company PYM HealthZak, while serving as a board member on non-profits like Bring Change 2 Mind and the Yerba Buena Center of the Arts.
“I decided to become an advocate because I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression personally,” he added. “Found myself self-medicating and generally unhappy, so when it came to speaking about my and my family struggles, personally, it just sort of clicked.”
And now he’s found another outlet for his devotion – an 11-week-old son.
Zak also revealed he developed better ways to deal with his father’s passing after initially neglecting himself.
“You can’t be there for others if you are not paying attention to your needs and struggles,” he added. “Take the time to do what you need to do to get through the day first. Then you’ll have a fuller cup to be there for others. Also, support groups were really helpful for me.”