Mariah Carey’s latest interview was her most revealing yet. The 48-year-old singer said she has been living with bipolar disorder for much of her life.
In the People magazine exclusive, Carey revealed she was diagnosed in 2001 and immediately went into a state of disbelief. “I didn’t want to believe it,” she told told People editor in chief Jess Cagle. “Until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant feat someone would expose me. It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn’t do that anymore. I sought and received treatment, I put positive people around me, and I got back to doing what I love — writing songs and making music.”
Carey’s fans immediately took to social media, applauding the singer for sharing her private struggle.
However, some posted nasty comments about Carey’s condition pointing back to the singer’s odd behavior over the years. One Twitter user mentioned her infamous Cribs episode in which the singer exercised on a StairMaster in stiletto heels. Several mockingly wrote, “Not surprised,” and one even took it further by saying, “If I were Mariah Carey I would’ve NEVER shared the face I was bipolar.”
Fans who support the singer’s choice to reveal her bipolar disorder immediately pointed to the mental illness stigma, which is often the reason many who suffer don’t talk about their diseases; they’re often fearful of being judged.
In the interview, Carey herself mentioned the isolation she felt by keeping her bipolar disorder a secret. “I’m hopeful we can get to a place where the stigma is lifted from people going through anything alone. It can be incredibly isolating. It does not have to define you, and I refuse to allow it to define me or control me.”