She knew what was good for her. Selena Gomez reluctantly opened up to GQ in its May 2016 issue about her lupus diagnosis and why she subsequently went to rehab in 2014.
The writer, Zach Baron, lightly approached the topic of rehab, and Gomez immediately replied: “No, no, no, no, no.” Baron writes that Gomez expressed “frustration and disgust” and reflected for a “long” time before giving him a detailed response.
“First off, this is something that everyone always wants to fixate on,” the “Same Old Love” singer, 23, reflected. “I got diagnosed with lupus. My mom had a very public miscarriage. So I had to cancel my tour. I needed time to just be OK.” (Gomez’s mom, Mandy Teefey, suffered a miscarriage in late 2011, prompting the star to pull the plug on several holiday concerts at the time.)
Gomez disclosed in an interview last October that she underwent chemotherapy treatments for her lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease that causes flare-ups with symptoms like body aches, fevers, extreme fatigue and more. “I was going through leukemia,” Gomez told GQ, though she likely intended to say “chemotherapy,” Baron noted. “And I went to two different locations for those treatments.”
“It’s really frustrating, because I am 100 percent allowed to have that, but I think people just want to have some sort of — I understand what you’re asking,” she continued. “But I’m just saying, I don’t think it really matters. My past seems to be way more fascinating for people than my future, which bums me out … Why do you care?”
After Baron explained that he simply wanted to understand what it was like grappling with lupus at such a young age — Gomez moved on, and shared a personal anecdote from when she visited a children’s hospital.
“There was this kid that wouldn’t look me in the eye at all,” Gomez recalled. “And I wear my emotions on my face, as you just have witnessed. And I don’t care, that’s who I am. I wanted to get his attention, even though maybe it was too much. So I just said, ‘Ask me anything you want.’ And he was the first person that I told, besides my best friend and family, because he asked me, ‘Have you ever dealt with anything like this?’ And I said, ‘I have lupus. I was in the ICU for two and a half weeks. I was in this exact same room.’ And it was the first time that he looked at me.”
Gomez concluded: “I don’t ever really like to sit and dwell on what that experience was. Was it fun? No. Is it fun to have it? No.”
Another topic she wasn’t excited to discuss was transitioning from Disney star to young adult. Baron wrote that he heard “pure anger” in Gomez’s voice when she addressed the subject.
“We’re easy targets. Every single kid who was brought up like this is an easy target,” she said of her peers, including Miley Cyrus, the Jonas brothers, Demi Lovato and others. “It’s disgusting, because it’s interesting to grown adults that these kids go through weird things because they’re figuring out, ‘Do I like this? Do I love this? Maybe I love this person. Oh, I’m exposed to this, people are reporting my every move and this and that because of Instagram and Twitter and you can find out everything.’”
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