Jeff Cavanaugh hits the airwaves daily on 105.3 The Fan.
Listeners know him for the light moments and lately, the tough ones, too.
"Even my own dad, who, God bless him - he's a great person, he referred to my first breakdown as 'that time that you were sad,'" Cavanaugh said in an on-air interview with KRLD Tuesday.
For the past week, Cavanaugh has been giving a voice to those who battle mental illness. It’s a disease he knows well.
“I fought it, I didn't talk about it. It just kind of lived there and I've had probably two full scale breakdowns in my life. One was probably early 20s and one was about six months ago,” said the co-host of GBAG Nation.
Tuesday, after news broke about Kate Spade's suicide, Cavanaugh tweeted "Hello my name is Jeff. I'm an anxiety and depression sufferer." The radio host, opened up about seeking help and offered support to those who feel alone.
“I just kinda told people on Twitter you know, 'if you don't have anybody, I'll be that person just reach out to me,'” he said.
The response was so overwhelming, he created a secret Facebook group to connect those struggling. The judgment-free zone is now up to 300 members and counting. They’re sharing stories, support and coping mechanisms.
“I've heard from people who said 'if it weren't for what you said today, I don't think I was gonna see tomorrow,'” Cavanaugh said. I've had conversations over the last 48 hours or so with about 400 people.
Publicly, he's urging action.
“The biggest thing to me is the de-stigmatization of all of it,” Cavanaugh said about mental illness.
He encourages people to simply listen.
“Be supportive, don't be judgmental in any way and just let people talk,” he said.
As for hearing, he's inspired others to speak up.
“It's the thing I'm most proud of that I've done in my entire life,” Cavanaugh said.
A life, that's seen struggles, that's now helping others overcome them.
Cavanaugh said some people have reached out telling him they'd like to get therapy, but can't afford it. He said he's now looking for organizations to partner with, so he can do even more.