Demi Lovato’s empowering new single “I Love Me” dropped earlier today (March 6), and like you, we can’t stop listening. But the day’s not over, and the singer is not done kicking ass. In addition to releasing her brand new self-love anthem, Lovato guest-hosted today’s episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, where she spoke to friend and label-mate Justin Bieber about their common struggles.
“We both had similar stories being in the industry really young and then we both had our struggles,” Lovato said, referencing their shared histories of past drug use and mental health issues. But now more than ever, it seems that Bieber knows he’s exactly where he’s supposed to be.
“I think for a while I tried to run away from some stuff, you know?” he said. “I tried to run away from the industry, tried to run away from what I felt like God wanted me to do, but I feel like this is what you and I are both meant to do, you know? You’re meant to entertain and sing, and I think same as me, and so when we run away from that it’s almost like we become less happy.”
In hindsight, though, Bieber realizes that running from your problems ultimately doesn’t solve them. “We feel like there’s all these responsibilities and all these sort of things that become heavy for us, and I think sometimes we gotta run towards the pain rather than run away from it,” he said.
In his recent YouTube docu-series, Justin Bieber: Seasons, he did just that, probing into his drug abuse as well as health scares, including a diagnosis of Lyme disease. “There’s a fear in showing vulnerability,” he said when asked if any topics were off-limits in the series. “I think the more mature you become, the more you understand that there’s power in your weakness. And when you’re able to show that, it gives other people the confidence to say, ‘You know, I’m going through similar things myself.'”
Bieber went on to say that being open about our struggles will help us realize that we’re not alone. “Having that confidence, and being able to instill that confidence in young people that it’s OK to have problems, that you don’t have to hide that, that each and every person in this audience is going through something unique and a different challenge… I just feel like if we’re open and honest about that, it creates a dialogue.”
Bieber’s words clearly resonated with Lovato, and following her 2018 struggles, which resulted in being hospitalized after an overdose, she looked at Bieber singer as a positive example. “For me and my experience when I struggled last year, I know I looked at you as an inspiration because you’ve been through this and you’ve come out the other side,” she said. “And I really just admire the man that you are today.”
For more of Bieber and Lovato’s conversion, including how they first met and whether or not they regret any of their tattoos, watch the full interview up above.