Taking to Instagram yesterday, Kim Kardashian West addressed the comments made by her husband Kanye in a presidential rally held in Charleston last Sunday. Speaking to her 180 million followers, the reality star and entrepreneur touched upon important issues of mental illness and the stigma that often accompanies it. Asking for “compassion” and “empathy,” Kardashian-West’s message was centered around dismantling misconceptions about her husband that had emerged in the media following the rally.
“As many of you know, Kanye has bipolar disorder,” the post began. “Anyone who has this or has a loved one in their life who does knows how incredibly complicated and painful it is to understand. I’ve never spoken publicly about how this has affected us at home because I am very protective of our children and Kanye’s right to privacy when it comes to his health. But today, I feel like I should comment on it because of the stigma and misconceptions about mental health.”
Expanding on the reality of caring for a loved one living with mental illness, Kardashian-West continues, “those that understand mental illness or even compulsive behavior know that the family is powerless unless the member is a minor. People who are unaware or far removed from this experience can be judgemental and not understand that the individual themselves have to engage in the process of getting help no matter how hard family and friends try.”
“I understand Kanye is subject to criticism because he is a public figure and his actions at times can cause strong opinions and emotions. He is a brilliant but complicated person who on top of the pressures of being an artist and a black man, who experienced the painful loss of his mother and has to deal with the pressure and isolation that is heightened by his bipolar disorder.”
“Those who are close with Kanye know his heart and understand his words sometimes do not align with his intentions.
Living with bipolar disorder does not diminish or invalidate his dreams and his creative ideas, no matter how big or unobtainable they may feel to some. That is part of his genius and as we have all witnessed, many of his big dreams have come true.”
We as a society talk about giving grace to the issue of mental health as a whole, however, we should also give it to the individuals who are living with it in times when they need it the most. I kindly ask that the media and public give us the compassion and empathy that is needed so that we can get through this.”
“Thank you for those who have expressed concern for Kanye’s well being and for your understanding,” the post concluded.
In his highly emotive speech, West delivered rambling remarks about his faith, political beliefs, and family. Ultimately leading to a breakdown that left the rapper in tears, the rally sparked conversations about West’s mental health and wellbeing, which were later exacerbated by a string of now-deleted tweets, in which he claimed he had been trying to divorce his wife, Kardashian-West. Amongst other things, the tweets also stated that Kardashian-West and her mother, Kris Jenner had tried to have West admitted to hospital after the rally.