In a new interview with Rolling Stone, the star talked about her mental health journey and subsequent abuse of the anti-anxiety medication, which she started taking at 18 with her boyfriend at the time.
“[He] was the first person that gave me a Xanax, and it became a way for us to bond,” as Cyrus recalled. "I think I wanted to fit in with him. I wanted to be what he wanted and what he thought was cool and what I thought everybody was doing.”
Besides, the musician explained that she was already struggling with body dysmorphia, anxiety and depression, all of which had been exacerbated by growing up in the spotlight. So when she found Xanax, she finally "felt that it was possible to silence things out for a second and numb your pain" and wanted to keep replicating the experience.
"It was over," Cyrus said before adding that her addiction was partially fueled by her distaste for party drugs and the amount of downers at her disposal, especially as someone who was "surrounded by people who were easily able to get it by buying it from people."
“It just kind of becomes this dark pit, bottomless pit,” she continued, sharing that her recreational habit morphed into a full-blown addiction that caused her to sleep through the day, wake up disoriented at 8 p.m. and lose track of time, which was only made worse by the pandemic.
Eventually, her Xanax dependence got to the point where she almost passed out while doing a promotional interview for her The End of Everything EP, where she started “completely nodding off and falling asleep, and unable to keep my head up or keep my eyes open, because I was so far gone."
However, it wasn't until the death of her grandmother and a social media maelstrom surrounding her use of a racially insensitive term to describe conservative pundit Candace Owens that Cyrus decided to seek help, during which she began writing what would become The Hardest Part as a form of therapy.
“It was coming out in my lyrics,” she said. “So, it’s like, ‘I’m not going to hide my truth.’"
Cyrus added, "I think it was evident that I was going through something the past couple years — I think my fans saw it. I think the public could see it.”
Even so, the "July" singer went on to say that she's "not trying to be, like, any spokesperson for recovery or anything like that,” seeing as how she's still "going through it and figuring it out.”
Cyrus said, “I wake up in the mornings, and I’m able to look in a mirror and go on about my day without hating myself. I’m able to comfort myself and nurture myself.”
Noah Cyrus' debut album, The Hardest Part, is out September 16. Pre-order on noahcyrus.com.
Photography: Walker Bunting
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