Lady Gaga tells Apple TV+ viewers to 'open your heart out for somebody else' struggling with mental health
Lady Gaga said she was repeatedly raped from the age 19 by a music producer who later "dropped (her) off pregnant on a corner" of a street.
Speaking in Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey's docuseries The Me You Can't See, the singer spoke about her "total psychotic break" after the abuse.
The pop singer said she was just a teenager when a producer threatened to burn her music if she did not take her clothes off.
Fighting back tears, Gaga, now 35, said: “And they didn’t stop asking me, and then I just froze, and I just – I don’t even remember."
Gaga, who first publicly alleged she was raped in 2014, described a separate incident years later when she went to hospital for acute pain and numbness.
She said: “First I felt full-on pain, then I went numb. And then I was sick for weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks after, and I realised that it was the same pain that I felt when the person who raped me dropped me off pregnant on a corner, at my parents’ house, because I was vomiting and sick.
“Because I’d been abused. I was locked away in a studio for months.”
Explaining why she could not name her alleged attacker, she said: “I do not ever want to face that person again.”
She described her mental health breakdown: “I had a total psychotic break, and for a couple years, I was not the same girl. The way that I feel when I feel pain was how I felt after I was raped.
“I’ve had so many MRIs and scans where they don’t find nothing. But your body remembers.”
And she revealed feeling like “there’s a black cloud that is following you wherever you go telling you that you are worthless and should die”.
She said she tried to self harm but encouraged others to seek help: “You know why it’s not good to cut? You know why it’s not good to throw yourself against the wall? You know why it’s not good to self-harm? Because it makes you feel worse. You think you’re going to feel better because you’re showing somebody, ‘Look, I’m in pain’. It doesn’t help.
“I always tell people, ‘tell somebody, don’t show somebody.'”
Gaga said she eventually learned how to cope with unwanted and damaging emotions, but it was a process that took two-and-a-half years.
She said her mental health is slowly improving but warned her recovery path is not a “straight line”.
She said: “Even if I have six brilliant months, all it takes is getting triggered once to feel bad. And when I say feel bad, I mean want to cut, think about dying, wondering if I’m ever gonna do it.”
Asked what she was doing during that time, Gaga quipped: “I won an Oscar.”
She won best original song in 2019 for Shallow, a track from A Star Is Born.
Prince Harry's The Me You Can’t See is streaming on Apple TV+ and features other celebrities who discussed their mental health struggles.
Where can you get help if you are struggling?
The NHS and several charities across the UK offer various resources and helplines for people who need help and for people who think someone they care about needs support.
Mind has a helpline on 0300 123 3393.
The Samaritans, which helps people who feel suicidal, can be contacted on 116 123.
YoungMinds, who support young people with mental health issues, can be contacted on 0808 802 5544.
The NHS has a resource page offering various routes to support here.