I grew up watching Disney channel. Some of my favorite artists started their careers there.
Demi being just one, she was always my favorite.
When I got into high school, she had become my role model. I wanted to sing like her one day (but my voice doesn’t have the strength). I wanted to look like her.
I fell in love with the way she spoke up about mental health, and her own struggles.
I found myself relating to her in ways I didn’t with others.
We both had a parent with schizophrenia. We both have mental illness. We both consider ourselves advocates. We associate ourselves with the word warrior.
I literally got my first tattoo with the word warrior on it, partially, but not completely, because of her song “warrior”, and what it means to me.
I would go as far as to say that I learned to speak up about mental health from her.
When I was 14, I did a presentation that was worth most of my grade, on her. We had to choose a role model to talk about, what we loved about them, charities and things they’ve done for the community.
No two kids were allowed to do the same person, and if we did, we had to convince our teachers why we should speak on them. I considered giving up and choosing someone else.
The other girl had gone through far more than me, and dealt with mental illness like me, and we were both lovatics. I didn’t want to hurt her feelings, and I didn’t want to speak up and give my reasoning.
But I pushed through, because I was dedicated to shedding a light on her heart, and what kind of person she truly is.
I ended up “winning”, and my presentation was a whole lot of me holding back tears, shaking, and speaking up about mental health for the first time in my life.
Everyone initially made fun of me for choosing a crack head pop diva to talk about, but by the end of it, the guy who had given me the most crap, told me, sincerely, that I had changed his opinion on her, and he had realized that she had more going on than he knew.
The girl I had to debate with gave me a big hug, and we both cried. She told me that I did Demi justice, and she was proud of me for speaking up.
When I saw the news on twitter today, I didn’t know what to do. I prayed for her, and I retweeted all kinds of people that I don’t normally support, trying to understand what was going on.
I knew she had relapsed, her song “Sober”, literally says that. “Mama I’m so sorry, I’m not sober anymore.”
Some people say that she was never truly sober for those six years. That when she released Simply Complicated, her documentary, that she wasn’t truly sober.
Part of me, as a lovatic, felt betrayed by her, and part of me wanted to cry for her.
She’s been in the spotlight for so long, openly discussing her issues. A lot of young people never recover from that, even old. But even if she was sober for a short period of time, or for as long as she said, at least she fought for it.
It wasn’t like she didn’t know she needed help. Who would release a song that vulnerable and not know that they needed help?
And it goes beyond celebrities, the media, and lying. She has manic depressive disorder. She’s had a really, really, hard go of it, as do so many other people in the world.
And why do we let them all fall into a trap of lies and addiction and abuse, letting them do that to themselves? Why do we ignore mental illness as if it’s their own fault, when our brain literally controls our entire being?
Why don’t we immediately try and help someone who is in need? Why do we immediately come to the conclusion that they don’t deserve sympathy or compassion, or that they just feel sorry for themselves?
If I have food, and I pass someone who is obviously homeless or in need, I give it to them. I won’t typically give money, because I don’t want to feed into the possibility that they are using it for the wrong reasons.
And if they are, I do feel sorry for them. They must feel like they have no other choice, or why would they do it? Who would honestly choose to live that way?
If someone is obviously dealing with a mental illness, or they reveal to you, confide in you, why would you tell them something to make them feel bad about it? Why wouldn’t you just want to love on them?
There is a huge difference between trying to help and trying to tell someone what to do, as if you immediately know what’s best for them.
So who am I to tell someone, or believe that Demi Lovato is nothing more than some crack head pop diva. There’s so much more than we will ever know. Things none of her fans will ever know, loved ones will even know.
So why do we judge people like her for their actions and their mistakes as if we don’t make some ourselves, and why do we deny people our love and our compassion when they’re in need? I don’t see a reason. I just see a society that is uncomfortable in what they don’t know, and never will.