Mariah Carey hid her bipolar diagnosis for seventeen years, but finally spoke to People magazine this week to talk about how it's affected her life. She describes her "denial and isolation" after her diagnosis in 2001 after receiving hospital treatment for a physical and mental breakdown. At the time, it was revealed by the press that Carey was undergoing psychiatric treatment in hospital but her publicist denied the reports.
She had just signed a multimillion-dollar contract with Virgin Records and was going through a break-up from Latin heart-throb Luis Miguel, who she dated for three years. Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that mainly affects sufferers' moods and it is characterised as periods of euphoric highs and depressive lows. These mood swings can be extreme and have a big impact on a patient's quality of life. Mariah suffers with Bipolar II, which means she endures bouts of depression as well as hypomania, which can cause irritability, sleeplessness and hyperactivity and will never experience a full episode of mania.
Mariah Carey spoke to People magazine about her isolation and fear, saying: "Until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant fear someone would expose me. It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn't do that anymore. I sought and received treatment. I’m actually taking medication that seems to be pretty good. It’s not making me feel too tired or sluggish or anything like that. Finding the proper balance is what is most important. For a long time I thought I had a severe sleep disorder... It turns out that I was experiencing a form of mania... I guess my depressive episodes were characterised by having very low energy. I would feel so lonely and sad." Now, though, she's back to writing songs and making music.
Mariah Carey is due to tour Oceania later this year with her rescheduled ' The Number Ones Tour', and is the mother of twins Morocco and Monroe with ex Nick Cannon. She's also set to co-executive produce, alongside Brett Ratner, a scripted drama about her life for the TV channel Starz. The show will apparently focus on Carey’s early rise to fame as a young teen in New York City. Her mental health troubles might have played a part in her re-connecting with religion, as Carey is apparently an active Episcopalian. In 2006, she said: "I do believe that I have been born again in a lot of ways. I think what I've changed are my priorities and my relationships with God. I feel the difference when I don't have my private moments to pray. ... I'm a fighter, but I learned that I'm not in charge. Whatever God wants to happen is what's going to happen. I feel like I've had endless second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth chances. It's by the grace of God I'm still here."