“I actually had anxiety around this interview because the last time I did an interview this long I was on cocaine.”
This is the opening line to Demi Lovato’s documentary, “Simply Complicated.” At 25 years old, this award-winning pop singer, actor and songwriter has experienced a lot of love, pain, heartbreak, guilt, happiness and anger. But on that rollercoaster ride of emotions she has learned a lot. The documentary begins with Lovato touching on her high school experience, a time in her life when she was bullied while yearning to be liked by others. This desire for popularity led her to excessive alcohol consumption, which then led to a cocaine addiction. She was 17 years old when she first tried cocaine. Even though she was initially scared to try this drug because her mom told her her heart would explode, she tried it. And she was hooked.
Lovato connects her love for cocaine to her birth father, who was also a cocaine addict and alcoholic. In the documentary Lovato’s mom, Dianna De La Garza explains, “I knew that he had a good heart. But sometimes if you don’t get the help for what you’re struggling with, a good heart just isn’t enough.” Lovato’s older sister, Dallas Lovato, remembers that Lovato had a lot of love for her birth father, but once alcohol and cocaine were involved, he would explode in rage, yelling and throwing things around the house, making it difficult for Lovato to view him with the same regard. Looking back Lovato admits, “I guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol. Because it fulfilled him and he chose that over family.”
After her parents’ divorce, it was Lovato, her mom and her older sister against the world. Lovato’s family later grew after her mom married Eddie De La Garza and brought her little sister, Madison De La Garza into the world. At a young age Lovato and her sisters began to participate in beauty pageants, and that’s when Lovato completely fell in love with singing. After realizing how talented Lovato was, her mom began taking her to singing lessons, acting lessons and auditions. And after many attempts, Lovato finally booked “Barney and Friends.” Soon after this, she booked a television show for Disney channel and then booked the Disney movie “Camp Rock” at 15 years old. It was during the rehearsals for “Camp Rock” that Lovato was picked up by her manager, Phil McIntyre. Even though Lovato was happy to see this success, it also caused her a lot of anxiety. Lovato admits, “Looking back, I think it was a lot for anyone, let alone a kid.”
It was during a concert in Colombia that Lovato reached her breaking point and entered a treatment facility. She was 18 years old at the time and was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. However, even after treatment, Lovato wasn’t ready to get sober. She remembers sneaking cocaine onto planes, into bathrooms and at night and no one knew. She was either craving drugs or on drugs. Lovato recalls, “There was one night that I was using a bunch of coke and I popped a few Xanax bars and I started to choke a little bit and my heart started racing.” After putting her life at risk, Lovato was rushed to the hospital and then entered a psych-ward for help. Still, this wasn’t much help.
No matter how much her friends and family tried to help her, Lovato recalls how little she cared at the time. She would fake her drug tests with other people’s urine, she would lie to people’s faces about being sober and just knew, “I needed to be high to get through what I was going through at that point.” After a few months of this, Lovato’s manager wanted to drop her. He didn’t know what else to do, so he resorted to his final plan, which was to convince every single person on the team to quit and leave if he left. Realizing that she would be losing everything and everyone, Lovato decided to commit to getting sober. The first thing her team did to help Lovato in the right direction was take away her phone, the gateway to everything painful in her life. From this point on everything changed.
At 19 years old, Lovato was booked as a judge on “The X-Factor” and was on her first year of sobriety. She was totally and completely committed to the process of becoming sober and learned along the way that “you really have to lean into the people who are trying to help you.” Although she didn’t relapse to her cocaine addiction, Lovato did relapse to her eating disorder. This came after her breakup with Wilmer Valderrama, who she was with for six years.
For Lovato, this eating disorder traces back to high school. Lovato remembers a girl from her class who suggested to her that she killed herself. The same girl started a suicide petition for Lovato, which she passed around and other students signed. Lovato didn’t understand why all of these students wanted her to kill herself. Based on what she was bullied for, she assumed her classmates wanted her dead for “being a whore” and being “fat.” Shortly after, Lovato began binge eating and forcing herself to vomit.
As a way to get past this eating disorder relapse, Lovato decided to start working out. She started going to the gym and was then introduced to Jiu-Jitsu, which she immediately fell in love with. Since then, Lovato has been on a on track toward bettering her physical and mental health. Along the way, Lovato has learned that “secrets make you sick.” She learned that “love is necessary,” and that “the key to being happy is to tell your truth.” She thanks everyone who has helped her along the way, but most of all thanks her fans because if it wasn’t for them, she wouldn’t be alive today.
Fans are in shock after watching Lovato’s revelations.
The fact that Demi murdered an American Idol performance drunk and depressed. And none of us knew #SimplyComplicated
— fenty lovato (@issawildthot) October 17, 2017
Even though this documentary is heartbreaking, Lovato’s fans are also in awe of her transformation.
— Izabela Marie (@Izaah_Marie) October 18, 2017
And thanks to her story, many are reminded that it’s possible to overcome anything.
— David LeCours II (@DDLECOURS) October 18, 2017
Thank you so much for opening up about this Demi Lovato. You are a queen. 💖
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