Trigger Warning: Drug use, self-harm, eating disorders, mental illness
Multi-platinum singer, songwriter, actress, advocate, philanthropist, business woman, and now Grammy nominee Demi Lovato does it all. On the surface, she’s gorgeous, talented, confident, and pretty much exudes perfection. But behind all the cameras and fame, she’s more human than any of us believe her to be. The young and thriving star opens up about her struggles with addiction, recovery, relapse, and life growth in her new documentary Simply Complicated.
Demi reveals childhood stardom took a toll on her life. The overwhelming demands and the peer pressure that came along with being a 17-year-old Disney star led her to a dark place of depression and disorders. Among these were an eating disorder, a cocaine addiction, alcoholism, and bipolar disorder. Although the severity of the eating disorder and the bipolar disorder increased with fame, they did not originate there.
Growing up in a broken household was hard to process for Demi as a child. No little girl wants to grow up without a father. Feeling as though his leaving was her fault, she was left with a sort of emptiness that she could never fully explain. This emptiness led her to the outlet of music. She took out her anger and depression late at night by binge writing lyrics to combat the demons that anxiety brought upon her. However, writing music only worked for so long. As she grew older, she became engrossed in the fame and was forced to project a sort of picture perfect image. The immense amount of pressure it took to portray herself as perfect led her to her next outlet, which are what became her disorders.
Demi took her experimentation with drugs and alcohol to a level she didn’t foresee reaching. She lied to the ones who love her, she physically abused those she cared about, and she even attempted to end her own life. She went to rehab, relapsed, went back to rehab, and is now on a long road to recovery. Although it will be a long and difficult journey, Demi is now taking the appropriate steps to better herself, and is using her experience as a positive outlet for others going through similar situations. Demi is an inspiration, and if you believe differently, then you aren’t seeing the messages she’s sending to so many others.
Demi reminds people that life is hard and everyone struggles, even those who seem to be living the perfect life (like a celebrity). After all, she was a kid going through things many kids go through. The difference, that many do not take time to understand, is that her experiences are published in magazines, announced on every television program you could imagine, and put out there for the world to see. Our silly mistakes are forgotten. Hers are publicized and judged by critics all over the world. Imagine hearing personal stories about your own life that didn’t directly come from your mouth, and seeing tweets and posts from social media haters describing you as a “crack head” or demanding you to “go kill yourself.” No kid should have to go through that, and no kid has the confidence and strength to ignore comments such as these. They break you down, they get in your head, and they destroy you from the inside out. They did to Demi exactly what they would do to any normal teenage girl, but she ended up overcoming them. She took her demons, put them in the past, and used them to help dominate her new lifestyle.
With a top of the charts new album, a bad-ass new image, and a confident new attitude, Demi Lovato is dominating the industry. She is strong as hell, and it is incredibly empowering to all young women and teens going through hard times. She reminds us that even though you may feel as if you’re at an all time low, the only place to go from there is up. The message everyone should be taking away from this short documentary is that Demi Lovato is strong, but so are you.