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Lady Gaga, who was forced to postpone the European leg of her Joanne world tour due to health issues, shared an update with her fans on Friday. The 31-year-old suffers from fibromyalgia, which the Mayo Clinic describes as “a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues” (yes, I had to look this up). Gaga first bowed out of the Rock in Rio festival last month, citing “severe physical pain that has impacted her ability to perform” and, soon after, made the decision to postpone the Europe dates. In an emotional post shared on Instagram a few weeks ago, she shed some light on her decision, stating, in part:
I use the word “suffer” not for pity, or attention, and have been disappointed to see people online suggest that I’m being dramatic, making this up, or playing the victim to get out of touring. If you knew me, you would know this couldn’t be further from the truth. I’m a fighter. I use the word suffer not only because trauma and chronic pain have changed my life, but because they are keeping me from living a normal life. They are also keeping me from what I love the most in the world: performing for my fans.
Gaga shared her suffering as part of her recent Netflix documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two, at one point in the film covering her face while trying to work through her physical pain. She asks “Do I look pathetic?” and confesses “I’m so embarrassed.”
On Friday, Gaga shared a Vice article on Twitter about her “Little Monsters” with a quick health update. She tweeted:
What a killer article. Gettin' stronger everyday for my #LittleMonsters can't wait to get back on stage & be w u at JoanneWorldTour #PawsUp https://t.co/p37b7dM8wC
— xoxo, Gaga (@ladygaga) September 30, 2017
Gaga’s fan aren’t the only ones concerned about her well-being. On Tuesday, Gaga shared photos of gifts from her friend Beyonce, including flowers and a sweatshirt from her Ivy Park fashion line. She thanked Beyonce in the caption to that photo.
Although Gaga is under the weather, she still managed to do a good deed, calling out #45 for his lack of response to aid those in Puerto Rico affected by Hurricane Maria. In a pair of Tweets, Gaga stated:
I this it's clear where the 'poor leadership' lies @realDonaldTrump Puerto Rico is part of the United States. This is our responsibility.
— xoxo, Gaga (@ladygaga) September 30, 2017
Oh I see @realDonaldTrump you're not helping PR because of the electoral votes u need to be re-elected #Florida=29 #Texas=38 #PuertoRico=0
— xoxo, Gaga (@ladygaga) September 30, 2017
And then, she announced that she would help out where our leader seemingly can’t, tweeting on Saturday:
While praying every day, I'm also donating $1Mil to relief efforts for Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, José, Maria and the Mexico City earthquake 🙏
— xoxo, Gaga (@ladygaga) October 1, 2017
I hope Gaga has a speedy recovery. From what I have read, fibromyalgia is a bitch. I still have yet to check out the Netflix doc, but it’s at the top of my queue. I have always dug Gaga and am glad she’s bringing attention and aid to the victims of Maria. You go, Gaga.
Note by CB: Here’s a link to more information about how you can help the relief efforts in Puerto Rico, which are finally making some progress. More than that, neighbors are looking after each other.
Photos: Getty Images, WENN.com
I’m not trying to say fibromyalgia isn’t real but what little we know about it, it’s considered to be triggered by emotional and mental stress. Honestly, pain in general is triggered not only by physical stress but emotional and mental as well. I watched her documentary and even though it wasn’t groundbreaking, I did come out of it with a sense of sadness for her when it comes to going anywhere publicly and the obsession that comes with having a public image to maintain. I’m glad she has the money to escape from it and get treatment in whatever way helps her. All I know is if I was in a crowd of people grabbing at me, I’d be having panic attacks too.
The problem is that we tend to view pain and suffering as a purely physical experience when the reality is that neurology is central to the experience and perception of pain. Pain creates stress that creates tension creates pain. I suspect that the more we learn about the brain and how it works, particularly in regards to musculoskeletal function, we’ll start to see a shift in the framing of chronic pain. We already know it creates changes in brain chemistry over long periods of time. What we don’t know is how or why perception of pain varies so dramatically or whether intense emotional trauma can even generate pain itself.
It’s almost a “which came first, the chicken or the egg” scenario. I think (depressive) mood disorder and chronic pain cannot be separated… it’s a sort of symbiosis. Chronic pain causes depression, and depression can cause chronic pain. A shitty situation, to be sure.
I was going to comment on that too….there is a psychosomatic component to it. That doesn’t mean it’s not real for her and she doesn’t feel the pain just that it can be so much harder to treat and manage.
I’ve had fibromyalgia for 12 years and while I agree that my mindset and stress can sometimes influence my pain level, the majority of my pain is caused by lack of sleep (because of the pain, vicious cycle) and the weather. So still very real, hard to diagnose and treat.
I have multiple sclerosis and my grandmother has fibromyalgia and let me assure everyone that her pain is just as real as mine. We both have physical pain that is purely physical, mental pain that is purely mental, and pain that is a confluence of both.
ALL chronic illness increases the risk for depression and other mental conditions. It is not something that is a sole effect of fibromyalgia. My depression is far worse than my grandmother’s, and the effects of my mood affect my pain more than hers do, too. No single case is the same as another.
I watched the Netflix documentary. It was good, at least the first half. It failed in in editing and directing for me- Gaga was great.
She seemed to be in a lot of pain in the documentary, and said she didnt know what she’d do if she didnt have the money to pay for all the help she gets, a good stab at Trumpcare.
I actually liked it. She seemed so vunerable and i like her voice now more than ever.
On another note, she called out Orange in a simple way and that’s what he understands. No big words, plain and simple.
Hope her health improves
I liked it, and was really into it at first. But during the last 20% I feel they dropped the ball. As a snapshot of her life during Joanne it worked well, but as a movie it didnt work for me- and I blame that on the editing of the last 20%, not Gaga. She was open and honest and just as talented as I thought she was. That jazzy Bad Romance was so brilliant.
My response is two-part:
As someone who has close relatives suffering from aggressive fibro, I can secondhand attest to the fact that the pain is very, very real. I’ve witnessed family members’ health deteriorate rapidly, and extremely educated researchers and professionals could not attribute the horrible symptoms to anything but fibromyalgia (ruling out arthritis, congenital diseases, etc. over the course of a few short years). I don’t believe a couple people I love and trust are exaggerating the effects by pretending to be gradually physically disable to the extent of not being able to climb a short staircase or press their foot down on a gas pedal.
Second, any sort of physical pain is tied to mental health, because it’s a cycle: the worse one gets, the more depressed and anxious they feel, and the continually downtrodden their mind gets, the worse the physical ailment becomes–no one feels top shape when their body is quitting on them.
I actually liked Stefani more after watching the documentary. She reminds me of my goodhearted friends from NYC who mean the best but sometimes come across as out of touch because they get it but they’ve never had to fully live in poverty, been victims of homophobia/transphobia, and most of them are not POC so never had to deal with racism. (I’m not condescending to her past of sexual assault and rape; I would never state that her otherwise privileges somehow cancels out those awful experiences.)
I’m glad she’s speaking out, donating, and not being one of those celebrities who sort of half @sses it in “asking 45 to please mind yourself”. Nah, buddy, GTFO, go learn more about the definition of an island and get back to me when you can speak with the diction and humility of people who have far far less wealth and power.
There’s no such thing as “aggressive” fibro! By definition, it’s not “degenerative.” If your family is suffering, which I don’t doubt, it’s from misdiagnosis. Fibromyalgia is a diagnosis doctors throw out when they haven’t a clue or when they sense patient is in psychological need of a disease.
Ding ding ding. it cannot be diagnosed, and docs on both sides will tell you the other side is wrong.
Aggressive is my wording. It’s not a diagnosis. I’m telling you that I can see what’s happening, in real time. I don’t see my family very often–every couple of years–and I can see their condition is worse. It also responds well to gaba, which is fairly common with fibro, though not at all a cure.
Get well soon, Lady Gaga. I love Five Foot Two and sorry for calling you a heritage act the other day. Fibromyalgia is a legitimate illness and not some bs diagnosis given by lazy doctors who can’t identify your disease. It is not another term for hysteria and certainly not a disease people made up just to get attention. I have a coworker who suffers from it (sciatica w fibro) and she was prescribed anti depression drugs and a mild painkiller you can buy over the counter like an nsaid, not even an opoid. Not everyone gets the same prescriptions but what I mean is not a diagnosis whiny people abuse just to get hold of strong pain meds.
My sister has fibromyalgia (or what her doctors believe is) from a major car accident she suffered years ago. It’s not really a “made up” disease like some sources like to claim. It’s more like one that we have limited understanding of in terms of the mechanisms of how it works, but that doesn’t make it any less real for the people who have it. It’s pretty shitty as far as chronic pain syndromes go.
I know a lot of people likely look at her and think to themselves that if she just left the spotlight, she could get help. But honestly…people who suffer from chronic pain disorders will always have to make that trade off. When you realize the hurt is never going away, you make a decision that your life has to keep moving forward. For a lot of people, that means working through the pain to accomplish your dreams.
I watched the movie last night and loved it. Huge respect for her voice and strength to just keep going.
I wouldn’t have recognized her. So much has changed about her face, which I had found quite quirky and attractive. Wish she had stayed the same. But I’ve always liked her. Her donation is incredible.
I thought the documentary was okay, nothing great, in that it lacked energy.
It’s hard when you are in chronic pain and people are dismissive. Having once been there, I have empathy for her.
She would probably suffer from nerve pain less if she had less surgery. This is getting ridiculous.
I have never disliked her, and actually purchased her first album, but didn’t consider myself a “fan,” much less a “monster”.I just got sick of the over the top things she used to do, although I understood what she was doing. Fast forward to the Super Bowl. She freaking killed it! I was so impressed with her, and found myself getting really pissed at negative comments made on social media. I watched the documentary over the weekend. She is more talented than I realized! She also comes across as really caring, and I felt horrible for her when she was in pain. I started watching the show out of boredom. I finished as a FAN of this incredibly talented, beautiful person.
I love Gaga so much and it breaks my heart to know that this is keeping her from performing something she loves and that it may possible keep her off the road forever which would be devastating.
I have never seen her live and really really hope to have the opportunity one day!