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Selena Gomez on Mental Health Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic

Teen Vogue logo Teen Vogue 8/9/2020 Ella Cerón
a boy wearing a blue shirt © Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

We’re now months into the coronavirus pandemic, and with seemingly no end in sight, plenty of people are navigating how they’ll continue to cope with social distancing and stay-at-home orders. That includes Selena Gomez, who recently opened up about how she’s making space for her mental health right now.

“It was hard, but I tried to find what I needed to get me through it,” she said during a recent press tour, according to Entertainment Tonight. “I have great friends and I see a therapist and keep my mind positive.” Selena also said she has “learned so much about myself. I’ve learned more about my country than I ever have from school or anything. So I’ve been very grateful for that as well.”

That isn’t to say that she’s glossing over the struggles people face as they navigate loneliness, job loss, grief, and other uncertainties. Young people whose jobs are classified as “essential,” those whose internships were cancelled or roles were eliminated due to the economy, and those who are tasked with grieving a loved one without much closure are among those who are currently struggling, and understandably so. “It’s not easy for anyone to be walking through what we're walking through,” Selena said. “It’s not normal, and it’s affecting people, specifically with mental health, and people who could have never thought about things they’re thinking about now. And it’s really confusing.”

Mental health has always been important to Selena, whose makeup brand Rare Beauty is dedicating 1 percent of its sales to a special fund dedicated to providing mental health services to those in need. And while experts don’t yet know exactly how much mass-scale social distancing, self-isolation, and collective trauma have impacted us during the pandemic, Selena is trying to do her part to provide small pockets of levity, specifically through her new HBO Max show, Selena + Chef.

“I really thought this would be something lighthearted because I was getting...down. And I know that a lot’s going on. Of course, there are more important things going on, but this was an opportunity to make something that could make people smile,” she said. The series follows the singer-songwriter as she and a master chef FaceTime together so she can learn to cook like a pro. However, things don’t always go as planned: “I hope you're gonna laugh because I look like a fool,” Selena added of the series, which debuts August 13.

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