Lady Gaga opened up about her mental health journey after her sexual assault.
The “Alejandro” singer detailed her sensitive past on Saturday (January 4) as part of Oprah Winfrey’s “2020 Vision Your Life in Focus Tour,” presented by Weight Watchers Reimagined in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. In the hour-long special, Gaga spoke to the importance of mental health education and learning to cope with the post-traumatic stress disorder she suffered from after being sexually assaulted by someone she knew.
“I was raped repeatedly when I was 19 years old. I also developed PTSD as a result of being raped and also not processing that trauma,” she told Oprah, according to Billboard. “I did not have anyone help me. I did not have a therapist. I did not have a psychiatrist. I did not have a doctor help me through it. I just all of a sudden became a star and was traveling the world, going from hotel room to garage to limo to stage, and I never dealt with it.”
Gaga also revealed how the trauma from that experience only intensified when she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, which leaves her in constant “head-to-toe” pain. “I started to experience this incredible, intense pain throughout my entire body that mimicked actually the illness that I felt after I was raped,” she said. “It was a trauma response.”
The “Shallow” star credits medication, therapy, and exercise for mitigating her pain enough to manage her condition, concluding with, “What I would like for you to know and to shine a light on is that many people don’t know what it is, and we need to all get together and figure this out.”