Selena Gomez is on the cover of April’s Vogue, a huge moment for her because this is her first official American Vogue cover, and that’s every famous girl’s dream, right? Of course, the profile is cloyingly done by a male writer who must babble on about her “mane of chocolate brown hair,” feeling protective of her, and note her “tiny waist” while he puts an apron on her. Yuck. If only Vogue‘s writing could match their photography!
But I digress, because what Selena says in the story more than makes up for the gross male gaze that’s needlessly applied. She used the biggest moment of her career to talk about her mental health struggles, helping barrel down that door and let teen girls everywhere — and everyone else — feel like it’s okay to be struggling. You guys — it’s absolutely, 100% okay to be struggling.
Specifically, Gomez discussed the 90 day stint in recovery/rehab program that she entered last summer, and one of the therapy techniques there that helped her the most: Dialectical Behavior Therapy. This caught my eye, because DBT practices were actually part of my own therapy program. DBT was originally conceived to help manage Borderline Personality Disorder, but is applied much more broadly now because of its effectiveness. It is often used in conjunction with PTSD — something many women in the spotlight suffer from — and it focuses on four main areas: mindfulness, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotion regulation.
It changed my life, and Gomez echoes that sentiment here:
“DBT has completely changed my life,” she told Vogue. “I wish more people would talk about therapy. We girls, we’re taught to be almost too resilient, to be strong and sexy and cool and laid-back, the girl who’s down. We also need to feel allowed to fall apart.”
As far as what spurred her to go develop some therapeutic techniques in the first place, growing out of her childhood star mode into an adult pop star became a source of anxiety for Selena. As she explained it to Vogue: