During a Facebook Live interview with Motto on Tuesday, country singer Lauren Alaina shared that she has secretly struggled with an eating disorder.
“I had bulimia for a few years,” she said of her years after coming in second on American Idol season 10 in 2011. “I was really sick. I don’t know that person, I can’t believe that was me.”
“I just desperately wanted to be thin,” she said. “That’s all I thought. I was obsessed with it, which it was ridiculous because I had everything going for me. I was following my dream. Everything I wanted at the time, I was getting. But I was obsessed with this other thing that was making me unhappy.”
Lauren was in her late teens at the time, and wrestled with insecurities. She said that her mother was crucial to her recovery. “My mom made me look in the mirror every day and say three things that I loved about myself,” she said. “At first, I couldn’t name anything. It was so sad. When my mom made me do that, I looked in the mirror and I literally couldn’t name one thing that I loved about myself.”
These days, Lauren doesn’t find it difficult to compliment herself. “I really like my eyelashes,” Lauren said. “That is such a stupid small thing, but it can be anything. I like to be funny and outgoing. I try to remind myself of the things that I like about myself that make me who I am.”
The singer’s sophomore album, set to come out early next year, will focus on themes of confidence and self-love. “It’s all about, no matter where you come from, that you can be who you want to be and achieve what you want to achieve,” she said. “I want people to learn to love who they are. Because that’s the hardest thing in life, being able to see yourself the way other people see you.”
“A lot of my fans are young women that are my age,” she said. “We’re all going through the same problems at the same time, so I just tried to be really honest with that.”
Watch Lauren’s full interview with Motto right here.