Demi Lovato Opens Up About ‘Survivor Guilt’ She Felt After 2018 Overdose

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Demi Lovato experienced “survivor guilt” after she overdosed in 2018.

The 29-year-old singer opened up about forgiveness while discussing her upcoming album “HOLY FVCK” in a new interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe.

Lovato, who recently added the pronouns she/her, suffered an overdose in 2018. After the near fatal moment, the former Disney star woke up in an intensive care unit with a long recovery process ahead of her. Lovato suffered “three strokes, a heart attack and organ failure” and was initially legally blind.

Although she is alive, her survival made her feel guilty thinking about the friends, including Mac Miller who died of an overdose in 2019, that she lost.


Demi Lovato
(Photo by RB/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images via Getty Images)

“I’ve made friends of all ages. I’ve lost friends of – I’ve lost friends who were around my age and those who were hurt so deeply because we were in the trenches together” , she told Lowe.

“You talked about it on ‘Dead Friends.’ It’s a song that’s ultimately about survivor’s guilt,” Lowe quipped.

“I had a lot of survivor’s guilt after my overdose,” Lovato continued. “Because, you know, right after Mac Miller died, and that put everything into perspective for me like it could have been you. It was almost you and… how are you going to live your life now.”

“It really touched me.”

Demi Lovato attends OBB Premiere event for YouTube Originals Docuseries "Demi Lovato: Dances with the Devil" at the Beverly Hilton on March 22, 2021 in Beverly Hills, California.

Demi Lovato attends the OBB Premiere Event for YouTube Originals Docuseries ‘Demi Lovato: Dancing With The Devil’ at The Beverly Hilton on March 22, 2021 in Beverly Hills, California.
(Rich Fury/Getty Images for OBB Media)


When Lovato emerged from rehab, she embarked on a journey to heal her personal trauma and rebuild her relationship with family and friends.

“With time comes trust,” she told Lowe of rebuilding relationships. “I never came out of treatment, I mean, maybe the first time, expecting people to trust me straight away. It was a learning experience from, OK, people They’re going to have to relearn how to trust you. The only way they can do that is by proving yourself not just by talking, but by taking action that contributes to your recovery.”

Lovato explored her struggle with addiction and the experience of rehabilitation while writing her eighth studio album, “HOLY FVCK.” The pop star released single “29” earlier this week ahead of the full album’s release on August 19.


(Weiss Eubanks/NBCUniversal)

“Everything I write comes from personal experiences, and I had been through a tough time last year,” she told Lowe. “And I went back to treatment, and when I came out I had all this unresolved trauma that I hadn’t processed or started dealing with during treatment. And then when I came out, I I was like, ‘It’s okay to be angry and feel these things.'”

“So when I made the album, the first week, I had a lot of anger, and I think it showed in a lot of the songs, ‘Freak’, ‘Heaven’, ‘Eat Me.'”

As she progressed through the process, she began to explore her “sexuality” with her music.

“Towards the end you have love songs,” she said.


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