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Robin Williams’ Son Zak Opens Up About His Dad’s ‘Heartbreaking Struggle’

"I didn't know what I could do."

Getty

On what would have been Robin Williams‘ 68th birthday on July 21, his son Zak opened up about his father’s battle with mental health. 36-year-old Zak Williams spoke with Good Morning Britain last week and reflected on his father‘s “intense personal pain” in the years before his death.

Williams took his own life on August 11, 2014, much to the shock and sadness of those who loved him. But behind the scenes, Zak says, his father had been struggling for a long time. “He still went out and wanted to share his feelings of laughter and humor with the world…while he was suffering and struggling, he still went out and performed,” Zak tells Good Morning Britain.

Zak goes on to describe the helplessness that he and his family often felt. “I didn’t know what I could do, or how I could be of the best support,” Zak explains. “We all loved him so and found it difficult because he wasn’t always open to sharing his personal pain and struggle.” He continues: “As a family member and a child, you want to do everything you can to help soothe and ease what seemed to be intense personal pain.”

Zak and his wife fiancee, Olivia June have a two-month old son together, who they named McLaurin Clement Williams after the late actor (McLaurin was Williams’ middle name). “Both his mom and I are seeking to be vulnerable and open in sharing our feelings and love for him in as many ways and every opportunity,” he says of his son. “Life can feel short and it’s important to really share the love and feelings of affection and acknowledgement when you can.”