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Demi Lovato is the face of Be Vocal in new mental health campaign

2015-05-30 13:00

Los Angeles — When Demi Lovato was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, she was actually relieved.

"Growing up- I felt very, very depressed," she said. "Even though I was playing concerts and living out my dream, I couldn't tell you why I was upset."

After a family intervention, she sought treatment and learned she has a mental illness.

"I remember smiling and thinking great, OK, so there's not anything wrong with me as a person," she said in a recent interview. "It's actually just a condition that I have and I can do something to fix it. I don't have to be like this forever."

Lovato is sharing her story and encouraging others to do the same through Be Vocal: Speak Up For Mental Health, an initiative launched on Thursday by a pharmaceutical company, the National Alliance on Mental Illness and other mental-health advocacy groups. Its aim is to improve treatment options at all levels and erase the stigma around mental illnesses.

"It's not something that anyone should be ashamed of," Lovato said. "The more people talk about it, the more people can come out and get the help they need."

Be Vocal is as much about sufferers voicing their treatment needs as it is about families and communities speaking up for better resources to meet those needs, she said.

Lovato's improved mental state is reflected in her work.

"I'd say my music is a lot happier now!" she said with a laugh.

The 22-year-old entertainer said she's recording a new album, which she plans to release on Safehouse Records, the new label that she and partners Nick Jonas and her manager, Phil McIntyre, announced earlier this week.

So fucking excited.... We did it @nickjonas @philymackinc!!!!!! #SAFEHOUSERECORDS

A photo posted by Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) on

Last but not least... Phil McIntyre. This man not only believed in me when I was 15 and made my entire career happen, but he fought so fucking hard to get me sober. When so many others had given up on me, he never did. He told me he cared too much about me to watch me self-destruct.. Therefore at the very end of my drinking and using he gave me one last chance.. Get sober and he'll stay, or he'd have to leave. He did that out of love. Not out of a money hungry I-don't-give-a-fuck-about-the-artist kind of way... But he cared so much that instead of being the kind of person in this industry who could care less about my well being and continued to make money while I was spiraling, he stood his ground and said "If you do this I will fight this battle with you every step of the way." I knew I couldn't let go of him not only as a manager but as an extremely important person in my life who genuinely cares about me. He is one of the very few people who LITERALLY saved. my. life. I don't think I'd be alive without him for many different reasons. Before I finish.... He'll never take the credit either yet he deserves ALL the credit IN THE WORLD. So many other managers out there will try to become the artists themselves by putting their name out there just as much as their artist by doing interviews or photoshoots... But Phil is one of the most HUMBLE and hard working people I know. I can't wait for our future together Phil. I'm SO GRATEFUL FOR YOU!!! Love you SO fucking much. #bestinthebiz #safehouserecords #thankyouphilmcintyre

A photo posted by Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) on

And she'll continue to advocate for mental health, to make depression and other mental illnesses as easy to discuss as diabetes or the flu.

"I didn't understand why I was going through what I was when I was dealing with all of this, and I realized I could share my story and help others," she said. "If that's my purpose for being on Earth, than that's what I want to do. There's so much more to life than just singing."

Read more on:    demi lovato  |  celebrities

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