While my own mental health struggles have been going on, things with Demi Lovato have been going down as well. As someone who also suffers from mental illness, I know how hard and exhausting the fight can be, and I felt compelled to address some of the negativity I have been seeing surrounding this.
First off, I want to say that Demi Lovato is kick ass. She has battled with mental health since she was a young child. While it may be easy for people to stand there and make comments about how “disappointing” she is, or how she needs to be a “better role model” – unless you’ve been through it, you have no idea. And even then, everyone’s battle is unique, and we can neve really understand anyone else’s. What I do know is that battling mental illness is exhausting. It doesn’t matter how long it’s been since your last relapse, or how long you’ve been struggling, it never gets easier. You get better at handling it and you learn new tools to manage it, but eventually it wears you down. We all have slip ups. Look at me. In a year and a half I’ve been in hospital six times. I’ve overdosed more than I can count. I’ve given up self-harming so many time I can’t even remember, and then fallen straight back into bad habits.
One thing that gets me about this world is how negative we are to others. That negativity gets us no where. All it does is spawn hate and sadness. Why not, instead of throwing hate out into the universe, we show love and compassion and understanding? People who are sick do not need condemnation. They need support.
And so I want to write this little message to Demi. Even though I know it will probably never get to her, I hope that whoever reads it will stop and think just for a moment about how too they can show love and compassion to someone in their life who really needs it. Believe it, it really does make all the difference.
Demi, I’m so sorry to hear what you have gone through. I know what struggling feels like. I’ve been there myself. But you have overcome stumbles like this before, and I know you will overcome it again this time. You are beautiful and compassionate and radiate love, and your friends and family and fans see this. Not for one second have you disappointed anyone. Your courage and your openness with fighting mental illness is what makes you a role model – you show young people all over the world what it looks like to fall and get back up again. I hope you take as much time as you need to recover. We’ll all be thinking of you on while you do, and we’ll all still be here when you’re ready.