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Celebrities who have amplified mental health discourse on social media

Less presence means more mental health

Celebrities who have amplified mental health discourse on social media Less presence means more mental health

The relationship between social media and mental health is not a new topic; continuous exposure to streams of other people's content can feelings such as inadequacy that could then result in social anxiety. The creation of edited realities as images to make every moment "Instagrammable" then led to the emergence of F.O.M.O (fear of missing out) as Bella Hadid recounted in a post last year. The importance of social media today is undeniable, but in order to safeguard one's mental health, one must regulate one's use of it, manage it to ensure that one is interacting with content that impacts one's daily life in a positive way, but above all, treasure how the nuances of being human are common to everyone, even the "aesthetic gods" from whom we draw inspiration. Let's find out which celebrities have amplified the mental health discourse over the years. 


Selena Gomez

Selena deleted her Instagram account in 2017 after it was hacked, and since then, she has stepped back from all of her social, choosing to turn over the management of her IG profile to a team of experts who alternate between posts about Rare Beauty or Gomez's latest work, but also more personal content. Gomez has chosen to use her popularity to speak out to normalize and destigmatize mental health. Speaking about her depression, she said "I felt that pain, anxiety, fear were overwhelming me, it was one of the scariest moments of my life" and that receiving professional help and a diagnosis helped her regain control of her emotions. An experience and a message she is keen to share "I think it's okay to share my experience, but it's not easy. I was often afraid of being misunderstood and judged. But now I realize that I am not flawed, I am not weak, I am not less than others. I'm just human." Her commitment to spreading awareness about this issue led her in late 2021 to launch Wondermind, a full-fledged platform focused on mental health, and to make the documentary My mind and me, which, available on Apple TV+ addresses the cancellation of Revival's tour due to mental health issues, lupus, a kidney transplant and a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.


Bella Hadid

In 2021 Bella plunged into burn-out that led her to spend two and a half weeks at a treatment center in Tennessee and begin therapy that she considers "the greatest gift she's ever given herself." The journey, however, is long and made up of ups and downs, so much so that in early 2022, the model shared a touching post on Instagram in which she confessed her struggle with depression that at certain times prevents her from getting out of bed and with anxiety that becomes paralyzing in some cases, remarking, "Social media is not real. For anyone who is struggling, please remember that. Sometimes all you need to hear is that you are not alone." Posting a series of pictures in which she was in tears and in pain was Hadid's way of sharing her discomfort and reminding her followers that despite the perfection flaunted on social media, people, even the most privileged ones, feel insecure, confused, imperfect. 


Cara Delevingne

Cara Delevingne has always had an aloof relationship with social, posting rarely and often only to launch a project or ad campaign. In 2016, however, she chose to share her mental health issues on Twitter, "I suffer from depression and sometimes it's hard to be a model during times when I hate myself. But I'm learning not to be overwhelmed by every wave." The model, who has a family history of addiction (her mother Pandora abused drugs for a long time), has suffered from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) since childhood and over the years has repeatedly revealed that she often feels unhappy and lonely to the extent that she confessed, "With my teenage years I collapsed. I wanted to commit suicide, I knew I was privileged but I wanted to die, I hated myself." In 2020, she even retired from the scene due to excessive "industry pressure." In recent period, Cara's fans have expressed their concern for the celeb's health following some of her alarming behaviors such as unnecessarily skipping work engagements, wandering barefoot and in an obvious state of confusion inside the Van Nuys airport in Los Angeles, and locking herself in her house without going out for days. Family and friends, especially Margot Robbie, convinced Cara to embark on a course of treatment for her anxiety disorders and depression so that she can get out of this particularly difficult time in her life.


Camila Cabello

For Camila Cabello, social media was often the ground where her body and curves were examined, dissected, and criticized by haters, but it was also the vehicle the singer used to respond to that gratuitous body shaming. When, however, she was faced with anxiety and OCD, she chose to write an essay for the Wall Street Journal, "There is something inside me that makes me sick, but I didn't have the ability to handle it before. Denying it didn't help me. [...] I didn't want to talk about it for the same reason that many people don't want to talk about being at war with their mind or body: I was embarrassed and ashamed. There was a little voice in me that told me I was ungrateful, because I had so many good things in my life." Asking for help allowed her to get an official diagnosis and embark on a course of therapy to start living again: "Obsessive compulsive disorder can manifest in various forms, for me it was obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors. Basically, it felt like my mind was playing cruel tricks on me. Today this is no longer the case: I am no longer at war with myself, anxiety comes and goes, but I experience it as just any negative emotion, it is no longer a feeling that consumes my life." Self-compassion, that is, not blaming herself because she was feeling bad, and self-awareness, that is, being honest with herself, were key to healing. 



Even a body positive icon can feel overwhelmed by haters. Some time ago, speaking in a Live Q&A on Instagram, the singer said, "I've come to a point now where I'm not just dealing with internet bullies; I'm dealing with seeing a lot of negativity on the internet that has to do with everyone." So, to protect her mental health, she does social detox every now and then (the longest time away lasted about a year) and focuses on real life, herself, her work and the people she loves and then returns to Instagram & co. stronger and more positive, ready to inspire her followers with her posts that incite self confidence.


Kendall Jenner 

Like Lizzo, Kendall Jenner also takes a short break from social media from time to time because she has discovered that she has developed a kind of addiction to them. In November 2016, she shocked her followers when she deleted her Instagram account, but then explained to Ellen, "I just wanted a little break. I would wake up in the morning and look at it first thing, go to bed and it was the last thing I looked at. I was feeling a little too addicted, so I wanted to take a minute." That was just the first in a series of digital detoxes Jenner has undertaken over the years that allow her to reconnect with her true self, without the mystifications typical of social media.


Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish has always been open about her mental health, admitting that she still suffers from panic attacks and anxiety. The singer has also said that she went through a period of self-harm during her teenage years and struggles with depression, an illness she has suffered from for years and which has affected her entire life. That's why in 2019 she decided to give her face to Seize the Awkward, a campaign to make those who live with this illness every day feel less alone, reminding them that "It doesn't make you weak to ask for help. It doesn't. It shouldn't make you feel weak to ask anyone for help. You should be able to ask anyone for help, and everyone has to help someone if they need it."