In extremely shocking news, Mariah Carey is revealing to the world her battle with bipolar II disorder and why she decided to finally get help.
“I didn’t want to believe it,” the international superstar singer-songwriter tells PEOPLE editor in chief Jess Cagle.
“Until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant fear someone would expose me,” she says. “It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn’t do that anymore. I sought and received treatment, I put positive people around me and I got back to doing what I love — writing songs and making music.”
“For a long time I thought I had a severe sleep disorder,” continues Carey, now back in the studio working on an album due later this year. “But it wasn’t normal insomnia and I wasn’t lying awake counting sheep. I was working and working and working … I was irritable and in constant fear of letting people down. It turns out that I was experiencing a form of mania. Eventually I would just hit a wall. I guess my depressive episodes were characterized by having very low energy. I would feel so lonely and sad — even guilty that I wasn’t doing what I needed to be doing for my career.”
After seeking help, Carey reveals that she is now in therapy and taking medication for bipolar II disorder, which involves periods of depression as well as hypomania (less severe than the mania associated with bipolar I disorder, but can still cause irritability, sleeplessness and hyperactivity).
“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,” Carey tells PEOPLE.
We applaud MC for bravely speaking out about her illness, and we wish her all the best!