Selena Gomez has revealed how she copes with her mental health struggles. In an interview with Vogue Australia, the singer spoke about her experience battling anxiety and depression and her diagnosed bipolar disorder which she shared in conversation with fellow singer-songwriter Miley Cyrus last year.
Having used her platform to advocate for awareness around mental health, Gomez stated she practices Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) and has been to four treatment centers. A type of cognitive-behavioral therapy, the main goals of DBT are to teach people how to live in the moment, develop healthy ways to cope with stress, regulate their emotions, and improve their relationships with others.
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“I think in mental health, I never understood the stigma until I went to my first treatment center, because that was years ago. But then there was a photograph that got out, and it’s wild to see how mean they were. It was like: ‘She’s the next this person, she’s the childhood star,’ whatever. And: ‘She’s doing drugs.’ They’re saying all this stuff about me,” the 28-year-old actor shared.
Gomez added that media outlets would not be able to get away with slandering headlines now that society has become much more aware of mental health issues. “It’s actually crazy that I’m watching it happen, even though I know we have so much more to do. And I have goals. I want to put this as a curriculum into schools,” she went on to say.
“I feel like I practice [DBT] every day…And then I also love being in the studio. Because the first hour I’m in a studio, I just talk. It’s like therapy. You just go in and you share your heart,” the maker of the 2020 album Rare continued.
Gomez advises those suffering from similar mental health conditions that the healing process is gradual and needs attention and commitment. “Honestly, I never want to be a person that’s like: ‘I got medication, it’s fine now.’ I do believe in medication, obviously, therapy—all of these things I’ve done to try and make myself better. But my advice isn’t going to be: ‘Oh, you’re going to get over it.’ It’s actually an everyday practice.”
“So if I’m thinking about something, I want to catch it before then. Or if I’ve been alone and isolated for too long, I’ll be like: ‘Oh wait, I need to be around people I love.’ And like I said, I also go to therapy. You can find ways to live in it. But once you understand it, the fear of you admitting that you have something goes away,” the star said.
Adding to her upcoming 29th birthday on July 22, Gomez expresses that things have only gotten better over the years, much like what most people say about becoming more confident with who you are as you get older. “I don’t know if that’s gonna be every year for me. Maybe it is. But I just feel like I’m constantly growing in the right direction,” she added.