It is clear that the world is going through a severe mental health crisis, according to data from the World Health Organization, in 2019 almost a billion people, including 14% of the world’s adolescents, were living with a mental disorder. Suicide accounted for more than 1 in 100 deaths, and 58% of suicides occurred before the age of 50. In 2020, the pandemic arrived to make the situation worse.
This crisis has been reflected in the world of entertainment. Artists like Chester Bennington, Ian Curtis, Michael Hutchence, Chris Cornell, among many others, have taken their own lives after battling various mental health disorders. Some industry insiders have broken the taboo that existed about being open about the issue and the struggles they have faced, speaking about their experiences and thus helping to raise awareness of the issue. On this World Mental Health Day, we talk about some of them.
On May 22, 2017, during Ariana Grande’s concert in Manchester, a man carried out a suicide attack using an explosive device that killed 22 people and injured 116 others. The American singer has been open about stress post-traumatic stress this caused her and the anxiety she has suffered throughout her life. “I don’t think anyone can talk about it and not cry,” she told Vogue. “I have always had anxiety. I never really talked about it because I thought everyone had it, but when I got home from the tour, it was as bad as ever.”
In ‘René’, a song released in February 2020, Residente addressed the health problems he has faced as part of the music industry. The video for the song shows the Puerto Rican vulnerable and honest. “I am sad and I laugh, the concert is full but I am empty”, he sings. On his social networks, he shared the experience that led him to write these lyrics. «One night I felt very bad, I was in Mexico, the stadium waiting for me, and I did not want to leave the hotel. I called mommy because she wanted to throw me off the balcony and I didn’t know why. That night a friend arrived and stayed with me. The next day I started writing this song.
In an interview, Billie Eilish talked about how her rapid rise to stardom led to depression and suicidal thoughts. “Sometimes what you want most turns out to be a nightmare,” she told Gayle King. “I don’t want to be too dark, but I genuinely didn’t think she would make it to 17. Her struggle with her mental health has made its way into her song lyrics like ‘Bury a Friend’. The Los Angeles singer also spoke about her relationship with her own body. “The relationship of my body and me… pffft, it has been the most toxic relationship you can imagine,” she reflected Eilish.
The Colombian released in 2020 The Boy From Medellín, a documentary in which he talks about the anxiety, loneliness and depression he has experienced as a public person. «…there needs to be people with a global reach who must make mental health visible. There are kids who are aware of what we do, who follow us, and if there are issues that they don’t feel comfortable about – that they’re afraid to address – and we talk about it, they may have more confidence in dealing with them,” said Balvin.
In 2018, Springsteen confessed to Esquire that he had suffered problems with his mental health. “I’ve had to deal with a lot over the years, and take a variety of medications to keep me in balance; otherwise I can fall dramatically and lose control. We have to be careful in my family, I have to watch my children, and I’ve been lucky. He ran in my family long before my father.” His father was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.
Cabello has opened up about how she deals with her Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. “OCD is rare. I laugh at that now. Everyone has different ways of handling stress. And me, if I get really stressed out about something, I start having the same thought over and over again, and no matter how many times I come up with a solution, I feel like something bad is about to happen if I don’t keep thinking about it.” The artist also assured that she has known how to deal with it and that she feels much better now.
“I’ve been more honest than ever, and it’s been very therapeutic,” Charli XCX said in 2019. The artist has spoken about how her mental health has come to impact the way she makes music. “I think about my feelings and my state of mind and what life as an artist is supposed to be like, my depression and my insecurities,” she told SPIN.
in the documentary Demi Lovato: Simply Complicated, the artist talks about how difficult it has been to deal with depression, bipolar disorder, eating disorders and addiction problems. “Everyone has their own path to recovery. For me, it’s about going to therapy, working my show, and having an honest relationship with myself and the people around me,” said Lovato, who has spoken on the subject several times.
The Avenged Sevenfold vocalist made a call in 2017 to raise awareness and be more open and understanding about depression and anxiety. “I’ve had friends who suffered from depression or took medication because their pituitary glands weren’t producing enough hormones, so I’ve been around a lot of people who have had issues like that. I’ve always been open to talking about it,” said Shadows, who also invited those who treat people with mental health issues to “not just tell them to just get over it.” Shadows added, “I would never question someone’s state of mental health, because I’ve lived through it.”
The Briton has confessed that he suffers from social anxiety. Despite dedicating himself to filling venues with people who come to hear him play, he has said that being surrounded by people “he feels claustrophobic.” “I have social anxiety. I hate large groups of people, which is ironic, because I make a living giving concerts,” Sheeran said.
In high school, Halsey had an attempt to end her life. The artist was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and was hospitalized for weeks in a psychiatric hospital. Now, Halsey has dedicated herself to raising awareness of the mental health crisis.
In 2019, Blake published a text in which he talks about mental health, titled It’s Not Ok To Feel Blue (And Other Lies) (It’s wrong to feel sad, and other lies). In the essay, the English producer talks about his depression and the guilt he feels as a white man suffering from these problems. “It’s especially easy to scoff at the idea that a white man could be depressed. I’ve done it myself, as a straight white man who was depressed. In fact, I still have the shame of having been a depressed heterosexual white man who has experienced suicidal thoughts,” Blake said.
In an interview with Rolling Stone en Español, the rapper talked about his anxiety problems and how they were caused by substance abuse in previous years. I got really anxious about everything I consumed as a kid, and all the things you don’t know you’re deciding in the process. And when I wanted to quit, abstinence came,” said Gera. The first time is when you feel that you are going to die; the second, how do you say, ‘fuck, you came back’; and in the third, fourth, fifth, you already say, ‘Ok’, you have to receive it and know that you are going to live with it, that it is going to be part of your life and know how to handle it. And I have known how to carry it; I know what my limits are,” she assures. The Mexican also talked about how therapy has helped him deal with these problems, “Therapy is like going down to the bathroom of the mind.”
“It’s hard to get out of bed in the morning when it seems like there’s problem after problem after problem,” Bieber wrote. “You start to look forward to the day ahead with a lot of fear and you anticipate another bad day. A cycle of disappointment after disappointment. Sometimes it can even get to the point where you don’t even want to live anymore. Where you feel that it will never change.
In an interview for Vogue in 2018, Perry revealed that she had suffered from depression after a material of hers was not well received by the public. “I’ve had bouts of situational depression and my heart was broken last year because I unknowingly gave a lot of validity to the public’s reaction, and the public didn’t react the way I expected, which broke my heart,” she said. she.
In 2018, Cudi revealed that he suffered from depression and claimed that he used drugs to try to fix it. “Depression was killing me,” she said, adding that she “was living a nightmare.” Kid Cudi has been an advocate for mental health awareness and has helped open the door for other hip-hop artists to talk about mental health in their songs and in interviews.
The artist has spoken about the effects that the bullying she suffered in adolescence have had an impact on her person. Because of that, Gaga was diagnosed with anxiety and depression. In 2012, she launched the Cynthia Germanotta Foundation, to help young people struggle with her own mental health issues.
“Asking for help when you are depressed is very difficult; I was isolated from my friends and family. I’ve been working to communicate with the people who love me”, said Lizzo after confessing that she had a very dark period after the success of her song ‘Truth Hurts’.
“It is more serious than what people want to say. Because they don’t know how to talk about depression, and say that it’s totally okay to feel sad. I went through a time where I was very depressed. I locked myself in my room and my dad had to break down my door,” Cyrus said in 2014.
“What if I just don’t wake up tomorrow?” Nicki Minaj wondered as she faced constant rejection early in her career. «That’s how I felt, I thought that maybe I should just end my life.
“I think talking about mental health is the most important thing,” Pink said. “I hope the taboo will go away because more and more people are talking about it.” The artist has spoken publicly about her struggles with anxiety and depression.
Selena Gomez publicly announced in 2016 that she was suffering from Lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease that can affect many parts of the body. “I discovered that anxiety, panic attacks and depression can be side effects of Lupus, which can present her own challenges,” she said in announcing that she would be taking a break from her career.
The Fall Out Boy bassist has spoken publicly about his bipolar disorder and how he has dealt with it to live a normal life. “Living on purpose and having a schedule with my family has brought balance to me,” the bassist told People in 2018. “I think it can be different for everyone, but for me, just being able to talk about things, meditate and exercising has been helpful.”
On his 2015 album, To Pimp a ButterflyLamar includes the song ‘U’, in which he makes an emotional reflection on his mental health and his struggle with depression and suicidal thoughts.
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Artists who have been open about their mental health issues