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Selena Gomez Reflects on Leaving Social Media After Justin Bieber Split & Bipolar Diagnosis

today10/04/2023

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As the most followed woman on Instagram, Selena Gomez knows better than anyone how draining social media can be on a person’s mental health. That goes especially for times of heartbreak, something she experienced firsthand in 2018 following her split from Justin Bieber (who got engaged to his now-wife, Hailey Bieber, that same year).

After the two stars parted ways following a decade of on again, off again dating, Gomez took a break from social media that would last four years. Now back online, the “Calm Down” singer has opened up about that time in a new interview with Fast Company that chronicles the success of her Rare Beauty empire.

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“I had just gotten my heart broken,” Gomez recalled. “I didn’t need to see what everyone was doing.”

“Then there were those moments of not feeling positive about how I looked because of what I’d see on Instagram,” she added, remembering how she used to think, “Wow, I wish my body looked like that.”

Gomez was also diagnosed with bipolar disorder around this time, although she didn’t share this publicly until 2020 via an Instagram Live conversation with fellow former Disney Channel star Miley Cyrus out of fear that her public image might suffer. “I grew up being a people pleaser,” she told the publication. “I had a responsibility at a very young age — young people were looking up to me. I didn’t know who I was. Having that responsibility would make me walk on eggshells a lot.”

“I thought maybe it would be damaging to tell people who I am,” she added. “It started to become a threat that freaked me out. Well, if you’re not right, then you can’t work.”

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Now, at the age of 30 and the head of a mental health-oriented beauty company expected to clear $300 million in sales this year, Gomez is feeling much more confident about herself, as well as her relationship to her fans. “I’m not unattainable,” she said. “I look at someone like a Beyoncé, and I am amazed. My jaw drops. Every part of her is just impeccable, and it’s just so beautiful. I went to her show and was blown away. But I’m just not that, and that’s okay.”

“I’m me, and I’m a little silly, but I also like being sexy and fun, and I also want to do good with the time I have here,” Gomez continued. “We need goddesses like Beyoncé and Adele. But I’m just happy to be your best friend.”

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