Selena Gomez surfaced publicly for the first time last night since she took a serious break from showbiz, and she had a lot to say. “I had to stop because I had everything and I was absolutely broken inside,” Gomez said as she accepted the award for favorite pop/rock artist at the American Music Awards. “I kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together to where I let myself down.”
In case you missed it, Gomez announced in a statement August 30 that she was taking time off to focus on her mental health, canceling 34 Revival tour dates in the process. She checked into rehab in Tennessee; in her statement, she said she was dealing with “anxiety, panic attacks, and depression” stemming from her diagnosis of lupus.
“In 2014 this stage was actually the first time I was authentically 100 percent honest with all of you,” Gomez said last night at the awards show, clad in a gorgeous bright-red Prada gown. “I think it’s safe to say most of you know a lot of my life whether I liked it or not.” She was referring to her performance of “The Heart Wants What It Wants,” a track about ex Justin Bieber, at the AMAs that year, which resulted in tears onstage.
“I don’t want to see your bodies on Instagram. I want to see what’s in here,” she added, pointing to her heart. “I’m so grateful to be able to share what I love with people that I love. You guys are so damn loyal but if you are broken you do not have to stay broken,” she concluded.
Her message about mental health is powerful, and one that we deeply need from celebrities and other influential figures. And this is not the first time she spoke out about her own issues in hopes of inspiring others to do the same. Back in August, she said, “I want to be proactive and focus on maintaining my health and happiness and have decided that the best way forward is to take some time off. … By sharing this, I hope others will be encouraged to address their own issues.” Absolute queen.