Selena Gomez and Dr. Jill Biden Talk Mental Health


Selena Gomez has used every stage out there to bring awareness to an issue that is incredibly personal to her: mental health. Now, she is taking that conversation a step further—and using her platform to “help others feel less alone” by encouraging an open dialogue “without shame.”

On Wednesday, Gomez joined a group of activists, politicians, and youth leaders at the White House to participate in the country’s first-ever mental health youth action forum hosted by MTV Entertainment. Along with other advocates, like Dr. Jill Biden and U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy, Gomez shared her perspective on what she called an “urgent public health issue.”

Gomez, who suffers from severe anxiety and depression, was hospitalized in 2018 after an emotional breakdown. Two years later, she revealed that she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. “Mental health is very personal for me, and I hope that by using my platform to share my own story…I can help others feel less alone and find the help that they need,” Gomez said during the forum, “which is honestly all I want.”

washington, dc   may 18 selena gomez reacts on stage as mtv entertainment hosts first ever mental health youth forum at the white house on may 18, 2022 in washington, dc photo by tasos katopodisgetty images for mtv entertainment

By sharing her mental health journey, Gomez hopes to “help others feel less alone and find the help that they need.”

Tasos Katopodis

Gomez went on from talking about the importance of sharing her mental health journey to her own healing process. “I heard a phrase recently that I really like, that which is mentionable becomes manageable,” she said. “Just to throw in a little bit of my journey, I felt like once I found out what was going on mentally, I found that there was more freedom for me to be okay with what I had, because I was learning about it by bringing attention to mental health through the media. Just by talking about your own journey can help. It sets the example that it’s a topic that can and should be discussed freely, and without shame.”

Dr. Jill Biden, who helped kick off the forum with a moving speech (a video of which can be found here), echoed Gomez. “Recovery isn’t always the same as healing,” she said. “Sometimes the darkness is inside of us, too. Over the last decade, an alarming number of young people have struggled with mental health challenges, and the pandemic has made it so much worse.”

Isolation, anxiety, and grief are “wounds that sometimes go unseen, too often cloaked in secrecy and shame,” Biden added. “But young people don’t have to face these challenges alone.”

Biden and Gomez were joined by representatives from mental health nonprofit partners, including Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation, which “aims to make kindness cool” through special programming and youth-led conversations, and We R Native, a resource for Native youth led by Native youth.

Also present, of course, was Gomez’s Rare Impact Fund, which is a branch of her beauty line’s commitment to give people access to mental health resources. According to the fund’s website, one percent of all product sales go to the fund and “raises additional funds with philanthropic foundations, corporate partners, and individuals in our community to increase access to mental health services in educational settings.”

During the forum, Gomez said that she wants to “ensure that everyone—no matter their age, race, religion, [or] sexual orientation—has access to services that support their mental health.”

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