- Pete Davidson is a comedian known for his time on Saturday Night Live, however, he has also been transparent about his Crohn’s disease & mental health conditions in recent years.
- The heartthrob has been battling Crohn’s disease since his teen years.
- Pete has spoken publicly about his battle against Crohn’s disease & mental health conditions in recent years, often poking fun at them through his work.
Saturday Night Live alum and comedian Pete Davidson has become a household name since he first appeared on the hit comedy sketch show in 2014. Not only has he appeared on some of the show’s most viral sketches, but he has since branched off and had a number of stand-up specials. The 29-year-old even starred in his own movie, The King of Staten Island, in 2020, which is a semi-autobiographical comedy on Pete. Most recently, he celebrated the premiere of his series, Bupkis, which landed on Peacock on May 4, 2023.
Aside from his successful work in entertainment, Pete came forward about his battle with Crohn’s disease a few years after he was diagnosed. He has even featured the conversation about his illness in his 2020 film, The King of Staten Island. More so, the New York native made his personal mental health struggles public in 2017 after he revealed he was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD). Keep reading to learn more about Pete’s ongoing autoimmune disorder, mental health struggles, and how he is doing today.
Pete Davidson Diagnosed With Crohn’s Disease
Long before everyone knew who Pete was and before he was linked to pop culture queens Ariana Grande and Kim Kardashian, the comedian was a teenager who had been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. During an Oct. 2016 interview with High Times, Pete opened up about finding out he had the disease and how he used cannabis to mitigate his symptoms. “I got Crohn’s disease when I was 17 or 18,” he said during the candid conversation. “And I found that the medicines that the doctors were prescribing me and seeing all these doctors and trying new things … weed would be the only thing that would help me eat.”
He credited cannabis as a way to help ease his stomach pain. “My stomach would be in pain all day and I wouldn’t be able to eat, but then I’d smoke and I can eat and do my shows,” the then 22-year-old explained. “I wouldn’t be able to do SNL if I didn’t smoke weed. I wouldn’t be able to do anything really. Me performing not high has gone awful. It’s awful for me because I don’t feel well.” During the interview, Pete revealed that he is often “offended” when people merely refer to him as a “pothead” since he “needs” weed to help him cope with Crohn’s. “I work really f****** hard and I take care of my s*** and I need weed in order to do that,” he added. “I’m sick, I have Crohn’s … so it sucks.”
What Is Crohn’s Disease?
Crohn’s disease is known as an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), per the official Mayo Clinic website. The condition causes “chronic inflammation” of the digestive tract beginning at the stomach all the way to the anus, according to Dr. William A Faubion, a researcher and gastroenterologist. The organization’s website states that some symptoms for those who have Crohn’s disease can include “abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition.” Dr. Faubion noted in the video’s explanation that an estimated over half a million people in the United States have the chronic condition.
There is currently no known cure for Crohn’s disease and the cause also remains unknown. Some treatments include anti-inflammatory drugs, immunes system suppressants, and antibiotics. Doctor’s primarily aim to ease the chronic inflammation and mitigate patient’s pain. Some medical professionals advice nutritional therapy and special diets for their patients.
How Long Has Pete Davidson Been Sick?
Although Pete did not go public with his condition until two years after he joined SNL, he has been dealing with Crohn’s disease for over 12 years. He was diagnosed at the end of his teens and currently 29 years old. Despite his ongoing health condition, Pete has not let the disease stall his career, but rather has used it as material for his comedy. In the 2020 film, The King of Staten Island, the east coast native added a line about his condition during a scene with actor Steve Buscemi and fellow comedian Bill Burr.
When Steve’s character offers Pete a hot dog at a baseball game, the latter declines and cites his Crohn’s disease as the reason (watch here). “Oh no I can’t I have Crohn’s,” Pete’s character explained. “It’s like when the lining of your stomach is all messed up so it makes you s*** all the time.” Bill’s character then quipped, “next time just say I don’t want a hot dog.”
How Is Pete Davidson Doing Today?
A few years after Pete revealed he suffered from Crohn’s disease, he also went public with his ongoing mental health struggles. During a 2018 interview with Variety, Pete admitted he had suffered from suicidal thoughts. “I’ve been in and out of mental health facilities since I was 9,” he said at the time. “I tried to drown myself in the pool when I was in the fourth or fifth grade.”
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.
Despite this, he credited taking mental health classes to improving his well-being. “The last few years have been real rough with me,” Pete added. “I took all these mental health classes and really spent a lot of time getting me good.” That same year, he appeared on SNL‘s “Weekend Update” and got candid about his borderline personality disorder (BPD). During the video, he encouraged people to reach out for help and “see a doctor.” He kept it light at the end and joked that it would “help” if the comedy show did “more” of his sketches.
Most recently, Pete had a candid conversation with actress Glenn Close during Variety‘s “Actors on Actors” segment in 2021 about his BPD diagnosis. “I got diagnosed with BPD a few years ago, and I was always just so confused all the time, and just thought something was wrong, and didn’t know how to deal with it,” the then 27-year-old explained at the time. “Then, when somebody finally tells you, the weight of the world feels lifted off your shoulders. You feel so much better.” Now, in May 2023, Pete has been celebrating the premiere of his show, Bupkis, which a comedy series based on his real-life. Fans can catch the show on Peacock.
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