Gabourey Sidibe has written about her struggles with bulimia and admitted to suicidal thoughts in a new memoir.
The ‘Precious’ and ‘Empire’ star said that she ‘wasn’t afraid to die’ after suffering bouts of depression, and would both vomit after eating and also have periods where she would stop eating altogether.
“Often, when I was too sad to stop crying, I drank a glass of water and ate a slice of bread, and then I threw it up,” she writes.
“After I did, I wasn’t as sad anymore; I finally relaxed. So I never ate anything, until I wanted to throw up — and only when I did could I distract myself from whatever thought was swirling around my head.”
It was after seeing a doctor that she was eventually diagnosed with depression, and prescribed anti-depressant medication.
“My mom has always had faith that things would be okay, but saying ‘tomorrow will be a better day’ wasn’t enough for me,” she continues.
“When I first told her I was depressed, she laughed at me. Literally. Not because she’s a terrible person, but because she thought it was a joke. How could I not be able to feel better on my own, like her, like her friends, like normal people? So I just kept thinking my sad thoughts — thoughts about dying.
“I found a doctor and told her everything that was wrong with me. I’d never run down the entire list before, but as I heard myself, I could sense that dealing with this on my own was definitely no longer an option.
“The doctor asked me if I wanted to kill myself. I said, ‘Meh, not yet. But when I do, I know how I’ll do it.’ I wasn’t afraid to die, and if there was a button I could’ve pushed to erase my existence from earth, I would have pushed it because it would have been easier and less messy than offing myself. According to the doctor, that was enough.”
Speaking to People magazine, she now says that she’s accepted that her depression is ‘part of my chemistry’, and that she still struggles with bulimia.
“I have a nutritionist that I really like,” she said. “I haven’t felt like purposely going to throw up. For years, I have not felt that way. But if I ever do, I just have to remember to do the things that make me feel good as opposed to the things that make me feel bad.
“I just accepted depression as something that’s part of my anatomy; it’s part of my chemistry, it’s part of my biology.
“When it’s too big for me to just turn around on my own, I see a therapist. I see a therapist anyway. We all should see a therapist. If only for the hour a week that you can talk about yourself and not worry about monopolizing the conversation? F***ing do it, it’s worth it!”
Her book ‘This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare’ is out now.