Raising Awareness on Mental Health: The Importance of Demi Lovato's New Documentary

Demi (D): “I actually have anxiety about this interview”

Interviewer (I)- “Why is that?”

(D): “Because the last time I did an interview this long I was on cocaine.”

Most of us grew up with some sort of pressure that held us back and made us feel inferior. We were the middle child, the ones trying out for the dance team, at recitals, etc. Sometimes we felt like we weren't good enough or couldn’t “compete” with the popular kids at school. Maybe you were the popular kid in school and felt pressure to fit in with an unrealistic standard. Whatever the case may be, we can all identify with having doubts about our own abilities at one point in our lives.

Now imagine facing those issues while growing up in the spotlight; suddenly there is a façade to keep up with. You’re living a double life to fit a clean-cut image and the pressure can reach a breaking point.

For Demi Lovato, that breaking point came at the tender age of 15. In a new documentary, titled Demi Lovato: Simply Complicated, Demi opens up about her struggle with eating disorders, alcohol, and drug abuse.  Demi recalls being bullied in school from an early age and eventually becoming friends with the popular girl in school. After asking her how she had so many friends, the girl stated, “well dude, you party.” It was at this point when Demi was just 15 that she was introduced to a world of drugs and alcohol.

“My first time doing coke, I was seventeen working on Disney Channel. I was with a couple of friends, and they introduced me to it. I was scared because my mom always said that your heart could just burst if you do it, but I did it anyways. And I loved it. I felt out of control with the coke the first time that I did it. My dad was an addict and an alcoholic, and I guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol because it fulfilled him and he chose that over family.”

The documentary goes on to explore Demi’s rise to fame with As the Bell Rings, Camp Rock, Sonny with a Chance, and Princess Protection Program. However, it provides a much darker perspective that emphasizes Demi’s internal struggles and addiction battles. It’s interesting to see how a celebrity that so many young girls idolized was dealing with many pressures herself. The documentary explores her admission to rehab, her fascination with death, and even her attempted suicide.

Even with all the dark themes involved in Demi’s past, the documentary highlights her recovery from addiction. Demi has been sober for six years and has been able to push forward from all of her struggles. Demi never relapsed during the six years that she dated Wilmer Valderrama either. Her strength to come forward and talk about her issues is just another reason to admire Demi- she is strong, committed, and willing to effect change and grow. The message is powerful and makes it evident that recovery and leading a happier life is possible.

From everyone at the Her Campus FSU team, we admire and stand with you, Demi.  

To watch the full documentary, click here.  

All images courtesy of YouTube