To Selena Gomez, From Someone Who Also Struggles With Their Body and Mind


Dear Selena Gomez,

My name is Mariana Solarte. I’m a 24-year-old Colombian woman and psychologist. I currently work with people who have cognitive disabilities.

When I woke up this morning, I saw you were a trending topic on Twitter. When I looked it up, I saw you were taken to a mental health treatment facility. Immediately I felt like I wanted to hug you, even though I’ve never met you and probably never will.

I get where you come from. I too live with a chronic condition. I have rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia and, additionally, I have chronic major depression, anxiety and panic attacks. My daily life isn’t easy, and I suppose yours isn’t either. I have to take a lot of medications and I’m constantly going around the city from doctor to doctor. My most sacred space might be my three therapy appointments every week, where I go to try to make sense of my weekly feelings, ups and downs, and many symptoms.

I have to use some devices to make my mobility a little easier. I have canes, compression gloves and a daily ritual of massages with different lotions in an attempt to reduce the swelling and stiffness. I fear a lot for my future, and pretty much on a daily basis wonder how I’m gonna survive 40, 50 or 60 years more with all of this physical and psychological pain. I often feel like a burden, like an outcast, and I’m constantly scared of people getting tired of me for my everyday pain. I don’t know if I’ll be able to type, write or drive in some years as my fingers are already starting to look curvy and stiff. I don’t know if someday I’ll make a good mom because I’m too afraid of having postpartum depression. I want to work in Spain, but the idea of getting on a plane and living by myself makes me panic in a way that completely freezes me.

But, just today, I realized recovery is possible. Almost two years ago I had a panic attack so strong I lost the ability to speak. Even after I regained it, until today, I couldn’t pronounce the letter “r” correctly in Spanish. I know it’s a little detail, but for me, it’s huge. And every step of recovery is. Every day without a panic attack or without crying is a milestone.

I’m sorry you are going through a rough time, but the bravest ones are those who seek help. You are brave, so so brave. I thank you deeply for making the struggles of many of us — who feel like our bodies and our minds are beyond our control — visible. Thank you for teaching people it’s really hard to live with a chronic condition, and that it’s absolutely overwhelming at times. Thank you for showing people that recovery is possible, and that help is available if we want to reach for it.

I hope you feel better soon. I hope you find peace. I hope you are able to see how many of us are inspired by your courage.

Sending you a lot of love,

Mariana

Lead image via Selena Gomez’s Facebook page


Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.


Related to Mental Health

Selena Gomez smiling

Selena Gomez Reportedly Admitted to Psychiatric Hospital After Potential Kidney Transplant Complications

Singer Selena Gomez was reportedly admitted to a psychiatric hospital on Wednesday, TMZ reported. Gomez, who received a kidney transplant in 2017 for complications related to lupus, originally went to the hospital for an “alarmingly low white blood cell count.” Low blood cell counts can be a complication related to kidney transplants. This is the second [...]
couple sitting on rock in middle of desert holding each other

3 Tips for Loving Someone Who Struggles to Love Themselves

Anybody who follows me on social media can easily see that as a mental health awareness advocate, I try to spread self-love as much as I can. What a lot of people can’t see, however, is that I don’t practice what I preach. I’ve had my ups and downs in both my discovery to love [...]

We Tried the New Mental Health App Basis, Here’s What We Thought

Launched on Oct. 4, a new mental wellness app, Basis, hopes to make mental health support more accessible. The service allows users to book on-demand, individual sessions with trained specialists who facilitate “a guided conversation to feel and function better.” The Mighty took a closer look at Basis and reviewed what it might have to [...]

41 Memes for When You Want to Stop Thinking About Your Mental Illness for a Few Minutes

When you live with a mental illness, often your struggles and symptoms are all you can think about — and it can be exhausting. Whether you’re struggling with extreme fatigue from depression, intrusive thoughts from anxiety or something else entirely, we want you to know you’re not alone and you deserve a brain break. That’s [...]