Bebe Rexha Recalls Finally Learning Her Bipolar Disorder Diagnosis

Bebe Rexha revisited the moment she asked her therapist if she has bipolar disorder.

By Samantha Schnurr Feb 25, 2020 6:31 PMTags
Bebe Rexha, Women in Harmony Pre-Grammy LuncheonStefanie Keenan/Getty Images

"I'm bipolar and I'm not ashamed anymore," Bebe Rexha tweeted in April. "That is all. (Crying my eyes out.)."

On April 15, 2019 the Grammy-nominated songstress took to Twitter to share a recent diagnosis. "For the longest time, I didn't understand why I felt so sick," the star wrote at the time. "Why I felt lows that made me not want to leave my house or be around people and why I felt highs that wouldn't let me sleep, wouldn't let me stop working or creating music. Now I know why."

Nearly a year later, the 30-year-old performer has pulled back the curtains even further on living with bipolar disorder, a diagnosis she told Self that, upon learning, "did kind of f&$k me up for a little bit."

"That was my worst fear all my life: going crazy," she told the magazine in a newly published interview. "I felt like me opening up to my fans was me finally saying, 'I'm not going to be imprisoned by this.' And maybe it'll make somebody not feel imprisoned, in that moment, if they feel like they're going through a rough time. That's why I decided to really open up and to free myself from that."

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During the interview with the magazine, Rexha was seemingly an open book as she discussed her bipolar 1 diagnosis, in which a person experiences severe highs and lows. The star recalled suffering anxiety and fear as a child, immense depression before her period and shifts to being "super hyper."

"I would text everybody, and I'd just get sloppy. I couldn't control my emotions, and I was always super anxious, and couldn't sit still," Rexha described to Self.  Through the highs and lows, she also noted having "not normal thoughts."

"I'd be in the passenger seat of the car and I would want to open the door and jump out and just get f&$king squashed. Which is terrible," she told the magazine. 

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Despite fearing public and professional potential repercussions and her family possibly not understanding, she eventually sought help from a therapist and a psychiatrist prescribed her medication, though Rexha initially did not know what she was treating. 

"I was kind of just going with the flow," she told Self. However, eventually she asked her therapist outright if she has bipolar disorder, which was met with a "Yes, hun," spurring Rexha's tweets in the name of transparency with her fans. "I won't allow it to label me," she said. "It's something that I'm going through, but it's not me."

And, while Rexha was scared the medications would "change who I was and flatten me out," it wasn't the case for the music maker. "[Medication has] maybe helped me be a little bit more insightful and learn things about the world and also allowed me to be a little bit more centered so that I can actually write about my feelings," she told the magazine. 

Now, the star is reaping the benefits of treatment. "It doesn't take away the sadness or anxiety totally, but I feel so much better," she told the magazine. "It's helped me live a more balanced life, less ups and downs. When my medication started kicking in, I couldn't believe how I felt. I couldn't believe that's how good people could feel."