‘I’ve had to work a lot of this through with a therapist’
Hailey Bieber is opening up about the toll trolls have taken on her mental health.
The model and spouse to Justin Bieber spoke to London’s Evening Standard newspaper about working with a therapist to help her deal with online harassment and gossip.
“I’ve had to work a lot of this through with a therapist, because it had got to a point where they’d [the trolls] gotten way too crazy for me, and I was really anxious all the time,” the 24-year-old shares. “The thing that bothers me the most is that a lot of people online really want me to be a not nice person. They expect me to be mean and they call me a bitch. You’ve never even met me in person, you don’t know me.”
Much of the negative attention stems from her marriage to one of the world’s top pop stars. As the article notes, Bieber (née Baldwin) was recently targeted by a fan of her husband’s ex-girlfriend, Selena Gomez, prompting him to speak out against those who “bully the person I love most in this world.”
Bieber says she is working to tune out the vitriol.
“I think it’s a matter of not feeding into them,” Bieber, whose father is actor Stephen Baldwin, says. “A lot of what social media is, is people projecting their own insecurities on to you. And people just lie. They make up all these crazy, weird lies that can be really disturbing for your own mental health.”
She adds, “I’ve had to let go of the idea that I owe anybody. I’ve gotten to the point where I just can’t set all the records straight, because there’s so much out there that’s not true. There’s something new every single day, so I’ve just learned to ignore it. You have to build up a wall between you and this false reality that is social media, and live with what’s in front of you, which is work and your friends and your family.”
Many people put “these weird, false, high expectations” on celebrities, which sets them up to fail, adds Bieber, who is critical of what she sees as “cancel culture.”
“I’m open about the fact that I’m still growing as a person,” she says. “I wish people were more open to the idea of letting people learn, grow, make mistakes and move on. But we live in this cancel culture where people consistently say, ‘You did this, so you’re canceled.’ It’s a very, very toxic mentality.”
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