Demi Lovato’s only 23 years old, but it sometimes seems like she’s lived a million different lives. And she’s done so in the glaring public eye, having entered show business at age 7 and proven herself a triple-threat through forays into music, movies, TV, fashion and beauty.
But as lucrative as her career’s been, it hasn’t been without its roadblocks, most notably her widely-publicized stint in rehab in 2010. At the time, Demi abruptly quit her tour with the Jonas Brothers and sought treatment for drug abuse, self-harm and eating disorders. She also revealed her struggle with bipolar disorder, and has since become an outspoken advocate for mental health.
Demi’s admirable quest to end the stigma around addiction continued on Tuesday night (Dec 22), when she shared an inspiring message about overcoming her own struggles. She also posted a video created by Facing Addiction, a nonprofit organization that helps addicts through recovery. The vid asks people to take a closer look at themselves in the mirror — because 1 in 7 individuals will see the face of an addict.
“I am one of the 1 in 7 people who has faced addiction, and I am grateful to be in recovery today,” Demi wrote. “It’s time for us all to reflect, and start @facingaddiction. Let’s stop ignoring the biggest problem in our country we often don’t want to look at.
“We all are connected to this issue one way or another and we all need to be part of the solution,” she continued. “Together we can replace shame with support, hope, and healing. #FacingAddiction #selfie.”
On the third anniversary of her sobriety in March, Demi credited her boyfriend, Wilmer Valderrama, with keeping her focused on staying healthy, writing on Instagram, “After sharing my ups, putting up with my downs and supporting my recovery… he still never takes credit and I want the world to know how incredible his soul is. I really wouldn’t be alive today without him. I love you Wilmer.”
Demi’s most recent message reminds us that addiction can affect anyone — no matter how old or young they are — and that it’s a more widespread problem than we may realize. And during this time of year, when everyone’s focused on self-improvement and starting 2016 with a fresh slate, it’s an also a motivating reminder that it’s OK to ask for help.