Kesha Recalls the Exact Moment She Realized She Needed Help for Her Eating Disorder

In an interview with Rolling Stone the Rainbow singer opens up about recovering from her eating disorder

By Elyse Dupre Oct 04, 2017 6:06 PMTags

Despite what the title may suggest, Kesha's journey to creating her latest album wasn't all sunshine and rainbows.

Before snagging the number one spot for Rainbow, the singer went through an emotional legal battle with her former producer Dr. Luke, whom she sued for sexual assault and battery and sought to invalidate her recording contract with in 2014. Dr. Luke denied the allegations and responded with a countersuit for defamation and breach of contract. A judge denied Kesha the ability to release music outside of Dr. Luke's authority in 2016, and the defamation suit has not been resolved.

In addition to the legal battle, Kesha entered rehab for an eating disorder in 2014. 

In a new interview with Rolling Stone, Kesha, 30, opened up about how she recovered from her eating disorder and the moment she realized she needed help.

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It all happened at a dinner party. Kesha told Rolling Stone that she had been pretending to eat her food and was feeling anxious about hiding her meal. 

"And I was like, 'Oh, my God, what if they walk outside and see this food in a bush? Or they see it in the garbage can?' And I just had all this mounting anxiety," she told the magazine.

That's when the singer realized enough was enough.

"And then finally I was like, 'F--k. This. Sh-t. F--k this shit. I'm hungry!' And I am so anxious that I feel like I'm going to explode from all the secrets. All the secret times I'm pretending to eat or other times I'm purging, and I'm trying to not let anybody know. And I'm just f--king sick of this shit," she told the magazine. "And I remember just shaking because I was so fed up, so anxious, and I was just mad that I had let myself get to that point."

Kesha then met her mom at a gas station, Rolling Stone reported, where she told her she needed help. The singer then checked into rehab and worked with a nutritionist. 

"I just remember crying into a carbohydrate," she told Rolling Stone, "being like, 'I can't eat it. It's going to make me fat, and if I'm fat, I can't be a singer because pop stars can't eat food – they can't be fat.'"

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Kesha told the magazine that she had felt pressure to "be a certain size" and that "certain people" would shame her for wanting to eat. Although the singer didn't name names, Rolling Stone cited court papers in which Kesha accused Dr. Luke of calling her a "fat f--king refrigerator;" however, he denied ever telling her to lose weight.

"I really just thought I wasn't supposed to eat food," she said.

"And then if I ever did," she added. "I felt very ashamed, and I would make myself throw up because I'd think, 'Oh, my God, I can't believe I actually did that horrible thing. I'm so ashamed of myself because I don't deserve to eat food."

This led Kesha down a path in which she was "starving myself." She even admitted that she felt "like a loser" during her recovery. But after a fellow music industry friend won several Grammys and congratulated her on reclaiming her health, the singer started to take a new perspective.

'Congratulations to you,'" she told Rolling Stone, recalling the unnamed musician's words. "And I was like, 'For what?' And he was like, 'Who cares about my Grammys? You just saved your f--king life.' And I just was blown away by that, because it made me look at the whole thing totally differently."

"Oh, wait. I did just take my life into my own hands and choose life over a slow, painful, shameful self-imposed death," she continued. "And I need to stop just being so f--king mean to myself."

Kesha opened up about how her new album saved her life on Good Morning America.

"It's so personal," she said on the show. "I've written every song on this album and they're all so personal and this song, I think, is just really important because it talks about me, personally, going through something very hard—lots of very hard things, making it through, not giving up and finding empathy on the other side, which is incredibly hard sometimes."

"I think this record has quite literally saved my life," she added. "And I hope you guys like it and I hope you can hear it and I hope it helps people."

To read the full interview, check out Rolling Stone's article.