Lady Gaga has never been one to shy away from the tough topics, and she got seriously intimate and real this past week when she was interviewed by Oprah during the kickoff event of her wellness tour, 2020 Vision: Your Life In Focus.
Gaga, who is now sporting shocking pink hair, cut short her own vacation to join Oprah and open up about mental health.
The pop star, who first rose to fame with her wild pop music and fashion, explained her new perspective: “The most shocking thing I can possibly do is be completely vulnerable and honest with you about my life, what I’ve been through, the struggles that I’ve seen that I have also been a part of, and share that with the world so that I can help other people who are suffering.”
Gaga opened up about her mental health struggles
In conversation with Oprah, Lady Gaga confessed to having suffered a psychotic break in the past due to PTSD that stepped from a serious trauma she experienced at the age of 19.
She was starkly honest about what that felt like: “This part of the brain where you stay centered and you don’t disassociate, right? It slammed down… It’s very difficult to describe what it feels like other than that you first are completely tingling from head to toe and then you go numb, but what is essentially happening is that the brain goes, ‘That’s enough. I don’t want to think about this anymore. I don’t want to feel this anymore.’ Boom. You break from reality as we know it.”
Gaga shared her experiences in an effort to destigmatize mental health struggles and to encourage those who are suffering to seek medical treatment.
Where her PTSD came from
She gave a birds-eye view into how she experiences PTSD and how she mistook her chronic illness, fibromyalgia, which afflicts her with frequent, agonizing physical pain for a symptom of that trauma.
Gaga told Oprah, “I was raped repeatedly when I was 19 years old, and I also developed PTSD as a result of being raped and not processing that trauma.” She explained, “I did not have a therapist, I did not have a psychiatrist, I did not have a doctor help me through it. All of a sudden, I started to experience this incredible, intense pain throughout my entire body that mimicked, actually, the illness that I felt after I was raped.”
How she handles it all
Lady Gaga says she wouldn’t be where she is today without truly addressing the pain and illness she was experiencing.
She credits, “Medicine, therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), cognitive therapy,” as well as transcendental meditation, daily exercise, and “radical acceptance.”
It’s also about accepting there’s something bigger than yourself.
“I consider myself a spiritual, religious woman. I don’t go to church every Sunday but I do pray every day,” she said.”All the things I’ve been through, I think they were supposed to happen. I was supposed to go through this.
“I think it happened because God was saying to me, ‘I’m going to show you pain, and then you’re going to help other people who are in pain because you’re going to understand it.’ Now when I see someone in pain, I can’t look away.”
Lady Gaga’s courage in sharing her story and her struggles is a powerful reminder that we can get through all kinds of suffering if only we are able to seek help. Once we get healthier and grow even stronger, we’ll be in the best position possible not just to achieve our dreams but to help others in pain as well.
More inspiring celebrities: