Demi Lovato’s fans appreciate the singer for always being open and honest about her past substance abuse and mental health battles.
In a new interview with Dr. Phil, the 25-year-old singer revealed even more about the struggles she faced in her early years, saying that she began having suicidal thoughts at the age of seven.
“I had this fascination with death,” she said. “I have experienced many things that I have not talked about and don’t know if I ever will talk about.”
She added, “But at seven, I knew that if I were to take my own life that the pain would end.”
Lovato said the suicidal thoughts returned later when she was bullied at school, and again “several times” when she was dealing with depression and bipolar disorder, which the singer was diagnosed with in 2011.
And while Lovato said she now has certain battles under control, she told Dr. Phil her eating disorder remains a daily struggle.
“I think the ever-lasting addiction in my life has been food. My eating disorder started when I was very young,” the 25-year-old said. “That’s something that I still work on on a daily basis. That’s kind of the last thing to go. I feel like I’ve conquered my addiction and alcoholism in a way that I don’t even think about it anymore.”
“But my struggles with my food issues are something that I still deal with. But I’m growing and I’m in a really good place today,” Lovato added.
Last Wednesday, the singer officially celebrated six years of sobriety and tweeted out an inspiring message to her fans.
“Just officially turned 6 years sober. So grateful for another year of joy, health and happiness. It IS possible,” she wrote.
The more Lovato speaks up to erase the stigma surrounding addiction and mental illness, the more people she helps to deal with their own conflicts.
“I just know how important it is to use my platform to help others and to share my story in hopes that it inspires people to either get into recovery or better themselves,” she told “Good Morning America” in January. “Whatever it is, I just want people to know they’re not alone and I’m here for them.”
If you or someone you know needs help, call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. You can also text HELLO to 741-741 for free, 24-hour support from the Crisis Text Line. Outside of the U.S., please visit the International Association for Suicide Prevention for a database of resources.
If you’re struggling with an eating disorder, call the National Eating Disorder Association hotline at 1-800-931-2237.