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Hayden Panettiere Is Doing “Awesome,” Nashville Costar Riley Smith Says

Riley Smith
Nashville newcomer Riley Smith, who plays Markus Keen on the show, told Us Weekly that Hayden Panettiere is doing "awesome" as she voluntarily seeks treatment for postpartum depression.

Nashville newcomer Riley Smith, who plays Markus Keen on the show, shared an update with Us Weekly about his costar Hayden Panettiere, who is currently seeking treatment for postpartum depression.

Smith, along with his fellow ABC stars, filtered into Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn., for the 2015 CMAs on Wednesday, Nov. 4. There, Us Weekly asked Smith how Panettiere has been faring as she seeks professional help following the December 2014 birth of her daughter, Kaya.

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“Good,” said the actor, who portrays an artist signed under Rayna James’ (Connie Britton‘s) record label on the series. “I texted her, and wished her well. She texted me right back and said, ‘I’m awesome, thanks.’ So hopefully she will be back on the set soon.”

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Hayden Panettiere
Hayden Panettiere

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Us Weekly broke the news last month that the actress, 26, had checked into a facility for postpartum depression. In a statement to Us at the time, Panettiere’s rep said: “Hayden Panettiere is voluntarily seeking professional help at a treatment center as she is currently battling postpartum depression. She asks that the media respect her privacy during this time.”

The star — who’s played country superstar Juliette Barnes on the series since 2012 — is also taking a medical leave from work.

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Prior to the revelation, Panettiere was transparent about her struggle. “It’s something a lot of women experience. When [you’re told] about postpartum depression you think it’s ‘I feel negative feelings towards my child, I want to injure or hurt my child,'” she told Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan in September. “I’ve never, ever had those feelings. Some women do. But you don’t realize how broad of a spectrum you can really experience that on. It’s something that needs to be talked about. Women need to know that they’re not alone, and that it does heal.”

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