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Singer Demi Lovato Opens Up About Being Sober For Five Years

Demi Lovato is celebrating one major milestone in her sober living journey. When the singer was 18 years old, she entered rehab to seek help for her depression and substance abuse issues. She also suffered from bulimia and self-harm.

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Updated:March 18, 2017, 12:02 PM IST
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Singer Demi Lovato Opens Up About Being Sober For Five Years
Demi Lovato at the premier for her new documentary about mental health called Beyond Silence. Courtesy: Instagram
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Demi Lovato is celebrating one major milestone in her sober living journey. When the singer was 18 years old, she entered rehab to seek help for her depression and substance abuse issues. She also suffered from bulimia and self-harm.

More than five years later, she's on the other side: happy and sober. Of course, it hasn't been an easy journey, a point she made clear in a recent, very poignant Instagram post.

The popular singer-songwriter and actress shared a heartfelt message to Instagram, marking her five-year anniversary of sobriety. "So grateful. It's been quite the journey. So many ups and downs," Lovato wrote alongside a progress tracker from The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

She continued, "So many times I wanted to relapse but sat on my hands and begged God to relieve the obsession. I'm so proud of myself but I couldn't have done it without my higher power (God), my family, friends, and everyone else who supported me. Feeling humbled and joyful today. Thank you guys for sticking by my side and believing in me."

The "Confident" songstress has also opened up about her personal history with bipolar disorder, and how it has forged her path as both a philanthropist and advocate for others in need.

There were so many times when she felt like she was alone, especially when she was dealing with bipolar depression. It was only when she finally hit rock bottom, started speaking up and got help that things started to change.

As someone who has learned to live well with bipolar disorder, she wanted to reach out to others with a message that there can be life on the other side of hard times.

I'm makin' moves...

A post shared by Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) on

When asked how could people living with mental health conditions speak up for themselves, she told Media Planet that the most important thing to remember is that asking for help and speaking up for what you need is a sign of strength.

Being open and honest with her doctor and others in my life is the key for her and it was not before she spoke up about her full experience—both the depression and mania—was she able to get the right diagnosis and find a treatment plan that was right for her.

Demi Lovato, who is involved with the Be Vocal initiative, says Be Vocal evolved out of The Mental Health Listening & Engagement Tour, where she learned from her country’s top mental health advocates about the power of advocacy–why it is important for everyone and how she could use her voice to help the mental health community.

By working with these advocates, she became a stronger, more informed mental health advocate and realized how important it is for all of us to speak up for mental health, she claims.

People living with mental health conditions face many challenges—from misunderstanding to limited access to programs and services.

"Whether it’s through meeting with elected officials or getting the word out through social media, we need to work together to end bias and improve understanding." she tells Media Planet.

Her advice for thoes looking to live well following a diagnosis with a mental health condition

"Speak up if you’re struggling and remember that a diagnosis doesn’t define you. There is no magic formula to living well with a mental health condition. Everyone’s process and treatment is different, which is why it’s so important to speak up so you can partner with your support team to find what works for you." she says.

The former Disney channel star has not shied away from addressing her tumultuous teenage years head-on, which included substance abuse, addiction, eating disorders, depression and self-inflicted harm. In 2010, Lovato left touring with the Jonas Brothersand checked into a rehab facility for three months.

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