Sarah Hyland initially underwent a kidney transplant in 2012, but the actress has revealed that she underwent a second transplant in September 2017 after her body rejected her new organ.
This time, Hyland received the kidney from her younger brother, Ian, and while both are now doing well, Hyland shared in a new interview with SELF that her trepidation ahead of the procedure led to her having suicidal thoughts.
“I was very depressed,” she said. “When a family member gives you a second chance at life, and it fails, it almost feels like it's your fault. It's not. But it does.”
Hyland explained that she felt helpless, revealing, “For a long time, I was contemplating suicide, because I didn't want to fail my little brother like I failed my dad."
“I had gone through [my whole life] of always being a burden, of always having to be looked after, having to be cared for," she added.
Hyland's father initially donated his kidney to her when she was 21, but in October 2016, her body began to reject the organ. The Modern Family star went on dialysis in February 2017, and in May of that year, doctors removed the transplanted kidney.
The 28-year-old shared that she spoke about her suicidal thoughts with someone close to her, which helped, and she now wants to encourage others to open up to those around them if they're struggling.
“It’s not shameful,” she said. “For anybody that wants to reach out to somebody but doesn't really know how because they're too proud or they think that they'll be looked upon as weak, it's not a shameful thing to say. It's not a shameful thing to share.”
Hyland also reflected on people who shame others about their health, whether it be physical or mental.
“If someone acts like that, feel sorry for them that they can't be a compassionate, loving human being,” she said. “You don't need that type of person in your life. I've experienced that, and it's heartbreaking. But as soon as you realize their true colors and what type of person they really are, it's...a very freeing sensation.”
While Hyland has encountered people like that in her personal life, she's also run into a large amount of negativity online for various reasons. Luckily for her, her followers are always there to defend the actress, something Hyland truly appreciates.0comments
“They're lovely, amazing human beings,” she said of her fans. “If someone says a remark that's mean or ignorant or something that shouldn't be asked because it's already been answered in the past, [my fans] go to town. They're my warriors.”
Photo Credit: Getty / Emma McIntyre