While viewers young and old watched Demi Lovato as a rising star on Disney Channel originals, the rookie actress admits she was high on cocaine.
In hew new YouTube documentary, Simply Complicated, the star gets candid about her exploration with harsh drugs, plus her road to recovery.
“My first time doing coke I was 17, working on Disney Channel, and I was with a couple friends and they introduced me to it,” the now 25-year-old said. “I was scared because my mom always told me your heart could just burst if you do it. But I did it anyways and I loved it.”
The pop singer admits that her father was addicted to drugs and alcohol, which led not to a fear of the substances, but a fascination.
“I guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol because it fulfilled him and he chose that over a family,” she added.
After being introduced to the powerful stimulant, it became a welcomed part of her routine. But the pop star remembers a time when she thought drugs might do her in.
“I went on like a bender for like two months where I was using daily,” she recalled. “There was one night where I used a bunch of coke and I popped a few Xanax bars and I started to choke a little bit, my heart started racing, and I remember thinking, ‘Oh my God, I might be overdosing right now.'”
After she randomly punched one of her backup dancers while on tour with the Jonas Brothers, she reached her breaking point and checked in to a rehabilitation facility. There, she was treated for her addiction and bulimia and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
The “Sorry Not Sorry” singer then checked into a sober house for a year and admits she had her last drink in 2012.
Lovato says that after surrendering to her shortcomings, she was able to make real, positive changes in her life.
Though the pulls for drugs and alcohol have subsided, the singer’s eating disorder still plagues her mind.
“Food is still the biggest challenge in my life, it controls, she said. “I don’t want to give it the power and say that it controls my every thought, but it’s something that I’m constantly thinking about: body image, what I’m going to eat next, what I could be eating, what I wish I didn’t eat. It’s just constant.”
The singer admits she relapsed with binging and purging after her breakup with Wilmer Valderrama following their six-year relationship, but “things have gotten better and things have gotten easier.”
Lovato says she’ll continue to fight and will remain candid through it all for her fans, who see her as a musical inspiration and somewhat of a sober friend and life coach.
Photo credit: Instagram / @ddlovato