Pop singer and former Disney Channel star Selena Gomez revealed that she has been diagnosed with the autoimmune disease lupus. The former “Wizards of Waverly Place” star made the revelation in an interview for the cover story in the current issue of Billboard.
The disease strikes mainly women, and typically between the ages of 15 and 44. Rumors have circulated about her health situation — including rumors of possible addiction issues — since Gomez, now 23, canceled part of a concert tour in 2013.
Gomez told Billboard: “I was diagnosed with lupus, and I’ve been through chemotherapy. That’s what my break was really about. I could’ve had a stroke. I wanted so badly to say, ‘You guys have no idea. I’m in chemotherapy. You’re assholes.’ I locked myself away until I was confident and comfortable again.”
Gomez also opens up about recently being targeted by online body shaming. “I was in a bikini and got publicly ripped for being overweight,” she tells Billboard. “That was the first time I’d experienced body shaming like that. I believed some of the words they were saying. When somebody else has your self-esteem in their hands …”
The pop star says she has turned the online hate into the motivation she needed to pour energy into her music, including her latest album “Revival” (see cover below).