Demi Lovato just can’t thank boyfriend Wilmer Valderrama enough. After all, the former Disney star credits the That ’70s Show alum with saving her life during her struggles with bipolar depression and an eating disorder. “He never takes credit for my sobriety, but I guarantee I wouldn’t be alive without him today,” Lovato, 22, told HuffPost Live in an interview Thursday, May 28.
Speaking out about her latest mental health awareness campaign called Be Vocal, Lovato aims to help other bipolar sufferers avoid the pitfalls she went through on the road to recovery. “I was dealing with bipolar depression and didn’t know what was wrong with me. Little did I know, there was a chemical imbalance in my brain,” Lovato told HuffPost Live. “Because I didn’t tell people what I need, I ended up self-medicating and coping with very unhealthy behaviors.”
“It’s a disease, just like diabetes: You have to find the right treatment for what you have,” she continued. “You’re not broken. It’s nothing to be ashamed about.”
Choosing to seek treatment over the last several years after family and close friends approached her for an intervention, Lovato saw her therapy and recovery as a turning point. “I don’t want to be miserable anymore — I deserve to live a life better than this. Now I live well with bipolar disorder,” Lovato said. “Happiness is a choice. Life is a roller coaster. You can make the highs as amazing as possible, and you can control how low the lows go.”
Boyfriend of five years Valderrama, 35, is chief among the star’s support system. As Lovato told HuffPost Live, she’s “so proud” of the relationship they’ve cultivated, and wants to show off her man’s selflessness whenever possible. “We’re in control of what we’re able to post online, and we’re very open about our relationship,” said Lovato, who often shares lovey-dovey shots of the duo on Instagram. “As I get more serious in my life, I’m more proud. I also wanted to give him a lot of credit that he never takes.”
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