K-pop singer and actress Sulli is believed to have died by suicide, according to Korean officials investigating her death. After the 25-year-old, whose real name is Choi Jin-ri, was found dead at her home in Seongnam, South Korea, authorities are reportedly working under the assumption that she died by suicide.
"Choi seemed to have lived alone in the house. It seems that she took her own life but we are also looking into other possibilities," a police official said of the investigation, according to the Mirror, the outlet adding that a note has not been found at the scene.
Rising to fame as a child before joining, and later announcing her departure from, the girl band "f(x)," which was put together by SM Entertainment, Sulli had faced harsh criticism throughout her career.
In 2014, she faced backlash after paparazzi photos revealed she was dating an older rapper, despite that, as the Washington Post reports, K-pop stars typically face pressure not to date "because it can disillusion their fans." After she began appearing without a bra beginning in 2016, stating that she felt more comfortable, she was again slammed.
Speaking out on the hateful comments she received in an Instagram video last year, Sulli said that she fell apart.
"Even close people left me," she said. "I was hurt by them and felt there was nobody who understands me, which made me fall apart."
Around that same time, Sulli also publicly revealed her struggles with mental health, stating on her reality show Jinri Store in 2018 that she suffered a panic disorder, Metro reports.
"Social phobia, panic disorder….I've had panic disorder ever since I was young," she said at the time. "There were times when close people…Some of my closest friends have left me. People hurt me, so everything fell apart. I didn't feel like I had anyone on my side or anyone who could understand me. So that's why I completely fell apart."
The fierce social pressures eventually caused Sulli to quit the entertainment industry in 2014, with SM Entertainment at the time stating that she "became mentally and physically exhausted from the continuous, malicious comments and false rumours, and has expressed her wish to take a break from her celebrity activities for the time being."
The K-pop singer was found unresponsive in her home by her agent at 3:21 p.m. local time on Monday. According to police, there were no signs of foul play.
Her death comes two years after K-pop star called Jonghyun, whom Sulli was close friends with, died by suicide at the age of 27.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.