Demi Lovato is speaking out about her past drug use in a very candid new interview with Access Hollywood’s Kit Hoover. The 21-year-old star, who wrote her memoir “Staying Strong: 365 Days a Year,” opened up to Hoover on the set of “The X Factor.” “I’m very, very good at manipulating people and that was something that I did in my disease, I would manipulate everyone around me. There were times I would just continue to lie so that everything looked OK on the outside,” she told Hoover.
In fact, Lovato said she went to great lengths when it came to ensuring she could use drugs wherever she was. “Something I’ve never talked about before, but with my drug use I could hide it to where I would sneak drugs. I couldn’t go without 30 minutes to an hour without cocaine and I would bring it on airplanes,” she revealed. “I would smuggle it basically and just wait until everyone in first class would go to sleep and I would do it right there. I’d sneak to the bathroom and I’d do it. That’s how difficult it got and that was even with somebody (with me). I had a sober companion, somebody who was watching me 24/7 and living with me (and) I was able to hide it from them as well.”
Lovato’s rock bottom – at just 19 years old – was found at the bottom of a soda bottle.
“I was going to the airport and I had a Sprite bottle just filled with vodka and it was just nine in the morning and I was throwing up in the car and this was just to get on a plane to go back to LA to the sober living house that I was staying at. … I had all the help in the world, but I didn’t want it,” she said looking back. “When I hit that moment I was like, it’s no longer fun when you’re doing it alone. I’ve really never talked about this stuff before. … I don’t know if I should be sharing this.
“I think at 19 years old, I had a moment where I was like, ‘Oh my God … that is alcoholic behavior. (It’s) no longer, ‘I’m young and rebellious and out having fun,’ it was, ‘Wow, I’m one of those people … I gotta get my s— together,’” she explained.
Lovato’s mom, Dianna, also sat down with Hoover for the interview, where she recounted dealing with her daughter’s addiction battles.
“I suspected (she was using drugs). It’s like any other parent, when you see things, when you see signs you don’t want to believe that’s what actually going on. So when they’re telling you that’s not what is going on … you want too badly to believe them and I think for a long time I was in denial,” she told Hoover.
“I didn’t know. I didn’t actually see her, so when she said, ‘Oh no, there’s nothing going on. I’m not using, I’m not drinking, I wasn’t doing any of these things,’ why was I not to believe her?” Lovato’s mom continued.
Lovato also opened up about her eating disorder, telling Hoover it began well before her teen years.
“It was always there, but then I just acted on it at around 8 or 9 years old. I started overeating, compulsively overeating. I would bake cookies and then eat the whole pan. I went from doing that to being unhappy with my body. I went to just completely starving myself and that turned into throwing up and starving myself and it was just this crazy battle going on inside of me,” she said looking back. “It got really difficult (and) I would throw up and it would just be blood and it was something that I realized if I don’t stop this, I am going to die.”
Following her 2010 inpatient rehab stint, the young star left with a greater understanding of the challenges her mom was also facing.
“I had issues I needed to work on as well because I wasn’t setting a good example for her,” Dianna revealed to Hoover. “I had a terrible eating disorder that I had for many, many years and I didn’t realize it and I had to face up to the fact that I was suffering as well. And a lot of what (Demi) went through with an eating disorder had to do with what she had seen growing up and I also had severe depression and I ended up asking for help actually they did an intervention with me and said, ‘Mom, you need to get help.’”
After both Lovato and her mother sought help, they grew closer and stronger as a family.
“The issue I had was definitely a mental health issue and I also had to get help for my struggles as well as she did and then once I did, we became closer as mother and daughter, (and) we also became well as a family,” Dianna said.
“I’m so … proud of her it makes me so happy,” Lovato said of her mother. “I love her so much.”