Superstar singer and song writer, Mariah Carey, reveals she’s been struggling with bipolar disorder for over a decade. But why did she wait so long to share her experiences with mental illness? She explains it all in her latest cover story with People magazine.

In 2001, Carey was officially diagnosed with bipolar disorder. It came after Carey had been hospitalized for suffering both a physical and mental breakdown. But even with a formal diagnosis, Carey avoided facing her condition, saying “I didn’t want to believe it”.

The world-famous singer spent years dealing with it on her own. Experiencing what she thought was a sleep disorder, but later learned it was a mania episode.

She said, “until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant fear someone would expose me. It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn’t to that anymore.”

It’s incredible to think that the shame and stigma surrounding mental illness can impact someone as successful and renowned as Mary Carey.

Luckily, she decided enough was enough, and after experiencing “the hardest couple of years”, Carey decided to turn the ship around.

She shares that she started to receive treatment via therapy and medication for bipolar II disorder – a condition that involves bouts of both depression and hypomania.

On top of this treatment, Carey is making sure she surrounds herself with positive people, and does what she loves: writing and making music. In her battle with bipolar disorder, Carey shares that “It does not have to define you and I refuse to allow it to define me or control me.”

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Families can be a wonderful support system. They can encourage you to dream big, and then support you while you reach for those big dreams. But some families don’t feel like that at all. Instead of encouraging and supporting you, it feels like they hold you back. If you can relate, you’ll want to keep reading for three reasons behind your family’s behavior.

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