Lizzo Started An Important Conversation About Acknowledging Mental Health

By: Kish
June 21, 2019

No one could ever accuse Lizzo of encouraging inauthenticity. But the rising star’s latest social media posts about her struggles with mental health took that message to a whole new level; it wasn’t just raw but also incredibly brave. The singer recently shared a video of herself wearing sunglasses before covering the lens with her finger, bringing the text into focus: “I’m depressed and there’s no one I can talk to because there’s nothing anyone can do about it. Life hurts.” What came next was an outpouring of love and support from fans and friends, including Constance Wu, Charli XCX, SZA, and fashion designer Marc Jacobs. “It does pass although while in it, it seems it never will,” wrote Jacobs. “You are so loved. I love you Lizzo.”

Simultaneously posting to Twitter, Lizzo went on to discuss the role self-care plays in combating the harder moments in life.

Today, Lizzo returned to Instagram — this time to thank all of her supporters, but to also have an honest conversation about feelings of sadness and hopelessness, as well as the trajectory of her career.

In the front-facing video, she talks directly to her fans: “I know that…something really incredible is about to happen — and something incredible has already happened […] I’ve used sadness so constructively in the last two years; ever since I’ve been working on being emotionally honest, I’ve used sadness as a tool for gratitude.” It’s at this moment, the singer becomes visibly emotional and her eyes begin to well with tears:

“It’s humbling and I’m grateful that I get to feel these emotions because I know that because of this sadness I’m going to be able to feel joy [sic],” Lizzo says, tearfully.

Let’s Talk About It

The accompanying caption also invited further conversation around sadness.

“What triggers your sadness? What do you do when those buttons are pushed?” Lizzo asked.

“What do you love about yourself in those moments of darkness?”

And no one held back.

“Rejection in the fashion industry, being humiliated and harassed by strangers, abuse, I shut down and honestly lock myself away and avoid everyone because I become numb,” wrote South Carolina model, La’Shaunae Steward. “But I love that I’m vulnerable and not afraid to acknowledge when I’m absolutely not okay even after all of these years.”

RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant Eureka O’Hara confessed: “Life can be so hard. You really are the greatness though and we just have to remind ourselves it’s okay to have feelings. Thank you for this video sis. I needed it really bad this morning.”

We All Have Our Triggers

In this communal sharing of pain, everyone was brought together.

From dealing with inadequacy, body shaming, problems with parents, rejection, overthinking, illness, and finances, users sounded off in the comments matching the star’s vulnerability.

While everyone was being open and honest, they also basked in the special moment Lizzo unknowingly cultivated.

“We need more emotional honesty from successful people of color,” wrote rapper and activist Open Mike Eagle. “Too often we make things seem to peachy and suffer in silence [sic].”

Lizzo’s emotional vulnerability started an important conversation that not only allowed her to reach out for help, but also signaled to so many others that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

The Promise Of A New Beginning

In her latest post, the singer wears a pair of short-shorts and an Astroworld t-shirt, celebrating her beautiful body and renewed fearlessness: “Ain’t nothin’ sexier than a new day.”

If you or someone you know is struggling, experiencing feelings of hopelessness, or may just need someone to talk to, please reach out to any of these hotlines. They’re here for all of us.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – Call (800) 273-8255

National Alliance on Mental Illness – Call (800) 950-6264

SAMHSA National Helpline – Call (800) 662-4357

Office on Women’s Health – Call (800) 994-9662

If you’re experiencing an emergency, please call 911.