Selena Gomez has repeatedly spoken out about the dangers of social media, condemning its impact on young people's mental health and self-esteem. And she opened up about her own relationship with Instagram and other platforms in a second appearance on the Giving Back Generation podcast, created by her friend Raquelle Stevens. Gomez discussed coping with body shaming, her struggles with lupus, and how she guards her wellbeing online.
"I experienced [body shaming] with my weight fluctuation for the first time," Gomez said, as Elle reports. "I have lupus and deal with kidney issues and high blood pressure, so I deal with a lot of health issues and for me that’s when I really started noticing more of the body image stuff."
"I really noticed when people started attacking me for [my weight fluctuation]," she continued. "In reality, that’s just my truth. I fluctuate. It depends what’s happening in my life." The online attacks stung, she revealed. "That got to me big time. I think for me, that really messed me up for a bit."
Gomez has taken complete breaks from social media in the past, telling Elle in 2018, "I haven’t been on the internet in months. I have my password for Instagram. I have no apps on my phone, no photo editing apps. I have Peak, a brain game."
These days, she's cautious about her approach to Instagram and the like, and makes a point not to read comments online, she said: "When I make an effort to post on social media or do what I’m doing, it’s important for me to make sure it’s 100 percent authentic and once I post it, I post it. That’s it."
She explained, "I want people to have a good relationship with social media. It’s not going anywhere anytime soon. But knowing that the real world’s in front of you and trying to pay attention to that is healthy."
"I see so many beautiful girls and amazing different characters and then they’re just demolished by an image that they’re trying to chase," she added. "Their wanting to be a completely different person but that’s not what’s inside of them, you know? But I get it. I look at other people’s pages—or I used to—and I’m like, okay, I need to fix myself."
Thankfully, Gomez has a different approach to social media now. "I’m very happy with living my life," she said. "We were talking about it earlier, being in the present because that’s it. Similar to me posting a photo then walking away, for me that’s it."
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