Selena Gomez has opened up about using her platform to help fans understand their struggles with mental health after speaking candidly about her own struggles.
In an interview with Fast Company, published on 3 October, the Only Murders in the Building star explained that she never expected to be able to reach the amount of people that she can, and she wants to use that responsibility wisely.
“When I was younger, I thought I could save the world. It breaks my heart to hear a girl come up to me and say: ‘I was so close to taking my life, but when I watched your documentary, I couldn’t imagine doing that anymore,’” she said in the interview.
“That’s the coolest gift, but yeah, look at me… It’s crazy to have that responsibility.”
The documentary the Rare Beauty makeup mogul referred to was titled: Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me, which premiered in 2022 and featured an intimate look into her mental health successes and struggles. In 2020, Gomez received a bipolar diagnosis in addition to her experience with lupus and a kidney transplant in 2017.
She said how difficult the decision to speak up about something so personal was because she grew up being a “people pleaser”.
“I had a responsibility at a very young age – young people were looking up to me,” Gomez told Fast Company. “I didn’t know who I was. Having that responsibility would make me walk on eggshells a lot. I thought maybe it would be damaging to tell people who I am. It started to become a threat that freaked me out. Well, if you’re not right, then you can’t work.”
However, she admitted that she wanted to start a “conversation” about mental health because of the documentary’s release. “I wanted there to be a conversation started. I wasn’t ashamed, and I wanted it to lead to something healing,” she said.
Now, after what Gomez calls a “hard season,” she’s realised that she needs to take breaks from social media for mental health reasons. “I’ve never promised anyone that I’ll never have a bad day again,” the actress said. “I’ve always been honest with my fans. Even when I take breaks from social media, I’ll say I’m taking a break.”
She’s embraced her stance on mental health with her makeup brand, Rare Beauty, which was first launched three years ago. The singer has made it the company’s mission to support a number of charities that are working to end mental health stigma through its Rare Impact Fund. Rare Beauty donates one per cent of all of their sales to the fund while raising additional funds with philanthropic foundations, corporate partners, and individuals in the community to increase access to mental health services in educational settings, according to the company’s website.
Currently, the company is in the middle of its “Your Words Matter” campaign, an educational campaign with the goal of inspiring and offering guidance on how to share and how to respond when talking about mental health.
On Wednesday 4 October, Gomez will be holding the first Rare Impact Fund Benefit.