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Lady Gaga Reveals She Suffers From Mental Illness

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Global pop phenomenon Lady Gaga has revealed that she suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), in a rare public admission of mental illness from a well-known star.

The singer made the statement at the Ali Forney Center for homeless LGBT youth in Haarlem, New York. Her unannounced visit was recorded and broadcast on the NBC Today show earlier this week.

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Gaga had already told the public that she had been raped at the age of 19, with her 2014 song Til It Happens To You. The singer has also spoken about the attack in an 2014 interview with Howard Stern, where she explained she wanted the matter to be made public so that the assault wouldn’t define her. However, this is the first time that she’s revealed that she became ill as a result.

Lady Gaga shared her experiences with the members of the center, many of whom have also been sexually assaulted and most of whom had to leave home because their families couldn’t cope with their identities. She took part in a meditation exercise with them, and mentioned she found it very effective for dealing with her illness.

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In a later post, Gaga revealed that tackling PTSD is a “daily effort” and that its effect like having “chronic pain”. She admitted that it took five years of suffering for her to seek help, and urged people with mental health conditions to come forward.

Gaga also told her audience that the exceptional kindness she had received from the doctors and other medical practitioners she had consulted had made the effort of admitting her condition less stressful, and the treatment much easier. She added: “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.”

In her interview, Lady  Gaga spoke at length about the symptoms she suffers from, including flashbacks and “dissociation”, which means her mind disengages leaving her staring into space, unresponsive to those around her.

ptsd

Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Clear Channel

Lady Gaga revealed that she is on medication and also undergoing various types of psychotherapy, but that the most important part of her treatment is hearing kind and supportive words from both her doctors and friends and family.

Her visit to the Ali Forney Center was part of the Share Kindness campaign, a joint effort by her Born This Way foundation and NBC.

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