lady gaga shares open letter about living with ptsd

The singer describes her struggle with the disorder in an essay on the Born This Way Foundation website.

by Matthew Whitehouse
08 December 2016, 9:42pm

Lady Gaga has spoken about living with PTSD in an open letter posted on the Born This Way Foundation website. The singer, who recently revealed she suffers from the disorder in an appearance on the Today Show, said: "There is a lot of shame attached to mental illness, but it's important that you know that there is hope and a chance for recovery."

Describing the experience of having "chronic pain" in her brain, Gaga writes: "It is a daily effort for me, even during this album cycle, to regulate my nervous system so that I don't panic over circumstances that to many would seem like normal life situations." She continues to list leaving the house or being touched by strangers as examples of those situations, adding that the most "inexpensive and perhaps the best medicine in the world is words. Kind words… positive words… words that help people who feel ashamed of an invisible illness to overcome their shame and feel free".

The singer first spoke out about her PTSD while visiting a homelessness centre for LGBT youth in Harlem, later writing that she did so in the hope of encouraging others to find help: "I seek to raise awareness that this mental illness affects all kinds of people, including our youth. I pledge not only to help our youth not feel ashamed of their own conditions, but also to lend support to those servicemen and women who suffer from PTSD. No one's invisible pain should go unnoticed."

You can read the letter in full here.

For more information on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support, please visit the Mind website.


Text Matthew Whitehouse
Image via Instagram

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