Demi Lovato, who recently completed a stint in rehab for emotional issues related to her eating disorder and self-mutilation, hit back at haters who teased her for gaining weight.
Lovato tweeted Aug. 28, 2011: I’ve gained weight. Get over it. That’s what happens when you get out of treatment for AN EATING DISORDER.
Demi, 19, quickly deleted the Twitter post but followed up with the following message: Guess what, I’m healthy and happy, and if you’re hating on my weight you obviously aren’t.
‘I’ve Been Compulsively Overeating for 10 Years’
In May 2011, Demi tweeted a bikini photo, telling fans she had been working hard to get fit and healthy. While Lovato is slightly heavier these days, she insists she’s healthier and happier.
Lovato, who was in rehab from October 2010 to January 2011, previously revealed she has been a compulsive eater and bulimic starting at age 8.
“I was compulsively overeating when I was eight years old,” said Demi. “So, I guess, for the past 10 years I’ve had a really unhealthy relationship with food.”
At age 12, the 5’3″ Lovato dropped to 95 pounds after relentless bullying drove her to stop eating.
“I’ve spoken openly about being bullied throughout the past few years, but one thing that I’ve never been able to feel comfortable talking about was the effects that it had on my life, afterwards,” Demi recalls.
“I literally didn’t know why they were being so mean to me. And when I would ask them why, they would just say, ‘Well, you’re fat. [Shortly afterward] I developed an eating disorder, and that’s kind of what I’ve been dealing with ever since.”
‘I Began Cutting Myself at 11’
While Lovato sought professional help for her bulimia, she hid another self-destructive habit: intentional self-mutilation through the cutting of her wrists, which she began doing at age 11.
“It was a way of expressing my own shame, of myself, on my own body,” she says. “I was matching the inside to the outside. And there were some times where my emotions were just so built up, I didn’t know what to do. The only way that I could get instant gratification was through an immediate release on myself.”
Lovato says rehab helped her confront the negative emotions she had kept bottled up for years and taught her how to cope with stress.
Demi says she’s opening up about her past troubles because she wants to help other young women dealing with similar problems.
“The real reason why I’m sitting down with you is to open up the eyes of so many young girls, [and to show them] that it doesn’t have to be this way,” she says.
Lovato is currently promoting her new album, Unbroken.
[UPDATE: Demi Lovato: I gained 30 lbs. but am happier than ever]