Selena Gomez talked candidly about recently seeking treatment at a rehab facility while discussing her upcoming Netflix drama 13 Reasons Why in New York City on Wednesday, February 8. The songstress, who is producing the series alongside her mother, Mandy Teefey, shared that her own struggles influenced her involvement in the show.
The drama series is based on Jay Asher’s YA novel of the same name, which tells the story behind the main character Hannah Baker’s decision to commit suicide. Before her death, the teen recorded 13 tapes which are then passed along to 13 of her high school classmates, who each played a role in her decision.
When asked if Gomez could relate to the dark storyline, the “Kill Em With Kindness” singer, 24, admitted that while her version of high school was different than most, she was “going through a really difficult time when they started production” on the series.
“I went away for 90 days and I actually met tons of kids in this place [and] we are talking about a lot of the issues that these characters are experiencing, [so] I would say yes,” Gomez said during the panel. “I had to deal with it on a different scale. Whether it was kids or just growing up in the biggest high school in the world which was the Disney Channel, it was also adults that had the audacity to kind of tell me how I should live my life. It was very confusing for me. … I had no idea who I was gonna be, what I’m still going to become. It definitely hit home.”
As previously reported, Gomez sought treatment at a Tennessee facility this past October after canceling the remaining 34 dates of her Revival world tour. “Selena is dealing with lupus, but this break is to focus on her mental health,” a source close to the pop star told Us at the time. “She can go to a very dark place.” The insider explained to Us that the facility, which was located just outside of Nashville, was a “private and quiet,” but “super intense” place.
Gomez added during the panel that she feels the intensity of the series will resonate with teens.
“I think this is what they need to see. We are not gonna post things, like, ‘Hey be empowered,’ because that’s not what they wanna see. Kids don’t care. They have to see something that’s gonna shake something,” she explained. “I want them to understand it. I would do anything to have a good influence on this generation. It’s hard, but I definitely relate to everything going on.”
The Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising actress, who is newly dating The Weeknd, again emphasized that she hates the current world of social media and the pressure it puts on teens.
“I can’t stand social media,” the Barney and Friends alum said. “I can’t stand what [teens are] looking at. I can’t stand what they think is reality and the show is as real as it could possibly get,” she concluded. “It’s hard when you’re looking at something everyday. You’re missing life in front of you. There are 17 year olds who look older than me. That freaks me out.”
13 Reasons Why hits Netflix on March 31. Watch the trailer above.
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