Lady Gaga reveals her struggle with PTSD

Lady Gaga PTSD

Musician Lady Gaga recently revealed in an open letter that she is living with PTSD. In the letter, posted to the Born This Way Foundation website, she discussed her struggle with the condition since being sexually assaulted as a teenager: “I have wrestled for some time about when, how and if I should reveal my diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). After five years of searching for the answers to my chronic pain and the change I have felt in my brain, I am finally well enough to tell you.”

In the letter, Gaga touched on living with and managing the symptoms of the condition, and that she experiences something called dissociation, which can present itself in a range of experiences – she opened up about how it impacted her: “…my mind doesn’t want to relive the pain so ‘I look off and I stare’ in a glazed over state… My body is in one place and my mind in another. It’s like the panic accelerator in my mind gets stuck and I am paralyzed with fear,” she wrote. “When this happens I can’t talk. When this happens repeatedly, it makes me have a common PTSD reaction which is that I feel depressed and unable to function like I used to.” Gaga also revealed she tends to experience somatization, which means she experiences physical pain related to her mental state.

Along with fighting against the stigma associated with mental illness, Lady Gaga also hopes to raise awareness for all people living with PTSD, including those outside of the military: “Traditionally, many associate PTSD as a condition faced by brave men and women that serve countries all over the world,” she wrote. “While this is true, I seek to raise awareness that this mental illness affects all kinds of people, including our youth. I pledge not only to help our youth not feel ashamed of their own conditions, but also to lend support to those servicemen and women who suffer from PTSD. No one’s invisible pain should go unnoticed.”

The news made headlines globally and the musician pledged to continue to share her experiences and manage the condition as best she can. “I will never give up on my dreams of art and music. I am continuing to learn how to transcend this because I know I can. If you relate to what I am sharing, please know that you can too.”

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2 thoughts on “Lady Gaga reveals her struggle with PTSD”

  1. Thank you so much for sharing Lady Gaga’s Story.

    You will find many Rare Disease Patients that have PTSD, including myself.

    Per “Patients living with rare diseases visit an average of 7.3 physicians before receiving an accurate diagnosis. For patients, the mean length of time from symptom onset to accurate diagnosis was 4.8 years (range: 0-20 years).

    I consulted with 51 specialists in 4.5 years to be handed a Medline Study and was told to “find the Neurosurgeon that performed the Study.” After consulting with the 52nd Neurosurgeon I had MVD Surgery for Geniculate Neuralgia, 16+ hours of emergency Chiari Malformation Decompression and totally rebuilt CSpine Surgeries, then an additional CSpine Surgery 2 years later. That does not include all the post op invasive therapies for pain management or the wrong diagnoses and treatments that clinicians prescribed in 4.5 years. It also does not include the side effects I had from my surgeries like meningitis and having my whole body become paralyzed for ten minutes of terror, and other horrible things no one should have to live through. It doesn’t include the additional Rare Diseases and conditions that developed post surgically like POTS, Occipitial Neuralgia, Continuous High Level Pain, Arthritis of the ear, Wordblindness and the list goes on. It doesn’t include me having to make arrangements for my daughter in case I would not be around to watch her grow up. It doesn’t include that I lost the ability to have a career, friends, or the ability to do most physical activities. It doesn’t include the specialists that were rude to me and told me “to see a psychiatrist because there was nothing physically wrong with me, or that I had the worst combination of Rare Diseases possible and he was glad he was not me.” It does not include the fact that I had to become a new person because the me I knew would never be present again. I think I deserve the mental diagnoses of an Adjustment Disorder, and PTSD. I earned those diagnoses with each step of my journey. So, if you have PTSD or a Rare Disease please never think you are alone. Patients Like Me is a Great organization, and there are many patients like me that will help anyone have an easier journey than I did not have a choice but to take .

    Tracy Zervakis

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