Billie Eilish may be making some of the darkest, weightiest pop music on the radio today, but the 17-year old star continues to encourage her fans to prioritize their mental health.
Eilish appears in a new PSA for Seize the Awkward, a public service campaign from the Ad Council, the Jed Foundation (JED) and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), intended to empower 16- to 24-year-olds to talk about mental health issues with their peers and help their friends in need.
“I think when people hear, ‘Remember to take care of your mental health,’ they think that everyone else is, and that is not at all accurate,” Eilish says in the ad. “You know, for me I’m trying to learn still to make sure that I stay OK.
“It doesn’t make you weak to ask for help. It doesn’t,” she adds. “It doesn’t make you weak to ask for a friend to go to a therapist. It shouldn’t make you feel weak to ask anyone for help. And you should be able to ask anyone for help, everyone has to help someone if they need it. You know, starting that conversation, you don’t have to make it super serious right away, you know, you say, ‘How are you feeling? Like, are you OK?’”
Eilish has previously discussed her music’s gloomy subject matter and how it can sometimes encourage listeners to romanticize darkness and depression.
“I feel like some people just try to act like they know, but just listen,” she told Apple Music’s Zane Lowe in an interview last month. “It’s not about trying to up their depression. It’s not about who’s sadder, who’s gone through worse. It’s about listening to people and actually just caring about them.”
In an appearance on “Ellen” last month, Eilish told Ellen DeGeneres about her diagnosis of Tourette Syndrome, discussing how, after fans began making compilation videos of her tics during live appearances, she felt compelled to go public.
“It’s something I’ve lived with my whole life,” she said. “Everybody in my family, all my friends, all the people that are closest to me know I have it and it’s not anything different. I just never said anything because I didn’t want that to define who I was. I didn’t want it to be ‘Billie Eilish, the artist with Tourette’s.’”
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