Halsey: ‘No amount of success or notoriety’ will make a woman safe from predators

Pregnant Vanessa Laine Bryant and husband Kobe Bryant arrive at the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party held at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 24, 2019 in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Xavier Co

Halsey covers Rolling Stone’s “Hot Issue” and I kind of like the cover shot: it’s striking, her expression is interesting and I appreciate that she’s got some armpit fuzz happening. Some days, I can handle a Halsey interview and some days I can’t – she’s a lot to take in, and she really tends to spill her guts to every magazine journalist. That being said, I liked this Rolling Stone interview. She was more reflective than ever, and she was able to process and describe her bipolar disorder and the manic stages she goes through, plus she talked a lot about the reactions to her previous spilling-her-guts-out interviews. You can read the full piece here. Some highlights:

She does her own grocery shopping: “I’m 24 f–king years old. I’m a grown-ass woman. I can’t be this f–king co-dependent, helpless thing who has someone who does everything for them, ’cause I’ll f–king kill myself. I will literally go crazy.”

She slept with men to have a place to stay: “[When I talked about it,] it of course turns into this hyperbolized fantasy of ‘Halsey the Hooker.’ I didn’t have a pimp, no one was handing me money. But I was definitely dating dudes I wasn’t into because I could crash at their apartment. I was having sex as a means of survival. I’m lucky that that’s all it was for me; for other women I knew, it wasn’t just that. That’s the point I was trying to make.”

She’s currently in an extended manic period: “I know I’m just going to get f–king depressed and be boring again soon. And I hate that that’s a way of thinking. Every time I wake up and realize I’m back in a depressive episode, I’m bummed. I’m like, ‘F–k. F–k! This is where we’re going now? OK. . . .’ ”

On how open she’s been about her life & how she’s criticized for it: “It was just really weird, to see how people were like, ‘Well, I’m going to police the validity of this experience that she had.’ You know? [It had] everything to do with the way people perceive the female experience.”

Her #MeToo stories. “Here’s what’s f–ked up to me. A young man seeks success and power so that he can use it to control people, and a young woman seeks success and power so that she no longer has to worry about being controlled….[But] It’s an illusion, a f–king lie. There is no amount of success or notoriety that makes you safe when you’re a woman. None.”

The changes she’s made in the past three years: She no longer drinks hard alcohol, does drugs or smokes pot. “I support my whole family. I have multiple houses, I pay taxes, I run a business. I just can’t be out getting f–ked up all the time.”

Whether her success has been stabilizing. “Yeah, because it makes me accountable. I’ve been committed twice since [I became] Halsey, and no one’s known about it. But I’m not ashamed of talking about it now.” Being committed isn’t a problem, she reasons, it’s a way of responsibly dealing with one. “It’s been my choice. I’ve said to [my manager], ‘Hey, I’m not going to do anything bad right now, but I’m getting to the point where I’m scared that I might, so I need to go figure this out.’ It’s still happening in my body. I just know when to get in front of it.” She quickly ticks off the people who work for her, tallies how many kids they have. “Do I want to hurt these people?” she asks.

[From Rolling Stone]

Yeah, she does sound matured, right? I remember covering interviews with her two years ago, even last year, where she sounded much more manic and all over the place emotionally and mentally. I think this was probably a case of her previous drug and alcohol use exacerbating the issue, even if at the time it was a “self-medication” situation. Now that she’s only having an occasional glass of wine, everything just seems… clearer, more focused. Also, this whole segment was very profound: “There is no amount of success or notoriety that makes you safe when you’re a woman. None.” It’s so scary but so true. There are rich, famous, successful, well-connected women out there and they are still victimized and preyed upon and hurt. Ugh.

Capital’s Summertime Ball 2019 held at the Wembley Stadium

Photos courtesy of WENN, cover courtesy of Rolling Stone.

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44 Responses to “Halsey: ‘No amount of success or notoriety’ will make a woman safe from predators”

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  1. ByTheSea says:

    I have a soft spot for her. And amazing what hair can do. I never “see” Halsey as biracial or a black woman (I know that that’s how she identifies; I just don’t see her that way), but with hair that way on the cover, I can suddenly see it.

    Good for her that she tries to get ahead of her mental health issues and prepares in advance. She seems to have matured.

    • Naddie says:

      I believe it has a lot to do with where you live. Here in Brazil I’m almost sure she wouldn’t see herself as black.
      I’m redhead and I’m seen and treated as white here, but when I went to UK I definetly felt “less white”, if that makes sense.

    • Samab says:

      Same for me.This is the first time I can see her being biracial.

  2. Jen says:

    Can you imagine supporting your whole family at 24 while the world is looking at you all the time and you’re managing a mental illness? I can’t.

    • Wow says:

      I always try to reserve my judgment on her to “if you can’t say anything nice” because if you are well aware someone struggles with mental illness you need to treat all medical conditions with empathy. Especially those of the mind.

      Thats said, she sounds self aware and by comparison to other interviews, lucid. What frightens me is she feels the crash coming and it feels like a cry for help and it seems as if there isn’t equal support coming back her direction. I really hope she has some good people in her life who are in a non transactional relationship with her and I hope she is actively seeking mental health care to maintain her stability.

      • Yup, Me says:

        Where did you read all of that? she said she has put people and systems in place so that when she feels the crash coming, she has a place to go to be taken care of because she’s aware of the number of lives she could impact by going off the rails. She just literally said she’s got the systems and the people in place to avoid a crash and it’s worked. What did you see?

      • ElleKaye says:

        @yup,

        She doesn’t really have anyone in place, she just tells her manager when she feels that she might be getting out of control. What she said is…“It’s been my choice. I’ve said to [my manager], ‘Hey, I’m not going to do anything bad right now, but I’m getting to the point where I’m scared that I might, so I need to go figure this out.’”

        She isn’t afraid to commit herself to get the help she needs and she isn’t embarrassed by it. But there is a difference between having someone looking out for your mental health and having to depend upon yourself to know when to commit yourself. And that is what she said in the article.

  3. ali says:

    I know it’s natural but Halsey has the most perfect nose-job type nose. It could almost be a textbook picture of “perfect rhinoplasty result”. I bet her picture gets taken to a lot of surgeons.

  4. Monicack says:

    She looks so….clean! Wooot!

  5. ew says:

    It’s crazy to me how she’s had 2 number 1 billboard songs while Nicki Minaj hasn’t. She’s like the Avatar of singers- huge financial success and little cultural impact imo.

    • Wow says:

      I think its because her image and music style is inconsistent. Which arguably has produced better music. The thing is she is so transformative you don’t necessarily hear a song and think Halsey.

    • Valiantly Varnished says:

      That’s a really random comparison. They aren’t even in the same music genre.

  6. Jess says:

    I think Halsey is such a chameleon! Every time I see her she looks different, which is pretty fun to be like.. wait who is that again? I personally love her music and think she is quite talented. I hope she can manage her mental illness and all of the pressure surrounding her fame; I really do want her to be ok.

  7. Lucy says:

    I quite like Ash and her music, even when I, too, have side-eyed some of her past interviews. Also, she’s (sadly) absolutely right.

    • otaku fairy... says:

      I didn’t pay much attention to her in the beginning of her career, but have really been liking the way she’s been using her platform lately.

  8. Aenflex says:

    Women were prey and commodities for many millennia. It’s only very recent in human history that women have gained any kind of equality, and it’s completely inconsistent. I imagine it will take a long, long time before there is true equality. Many lifetimes.

    • otaku fairy... says:

      Agreed. It’s very inconsistent and feels like any little bit of liberation or progress experienced could be snatched away.

  9. tealily says:

    I don’t know her at all, but she sounds really thoughtful here. I hate that she describes herself as “boring” when she’s in a depressive episode. How you project yourself outwardly should be the least of your worries at that time. Depression is the worst.

  10. BANANIE says:

    It’s scary, but I can relate to her comments about feeling “boring” after a manic episode is over. That’s exactly how it feels for me, and I have to keep reminding myself that no matter how productive or energetic or confident I might feel in one of those episodes, it’s dangerous. I know creativity affects my job (I’m a writer and reporter) but I can’t imagine having your creativity tied up with fame like that.

    • asdfa says:

      I feel like that’s an OK thing to say, you know? That’s how her depressive episodes (and yours, it sounds like) make her feel. I have regular depression and on my bad days I absolutely feel both boring and bored by everything.

      • tealily says:

        To be clear, I’m not saying it isn’t an ok thing for her to say in my comment above, just that it kills me that that’s how she views it and feels about it. I’ve suffered from depression myself and I do understand where she’s coming from (and even more what you’re saying, @asdfa,… “bored by everything” is exactly how I felt). It’s just so sad. I really feel for her.

  11. asdfa says:

    I’ve always liked Halsey more or less, but this interview REALLY made me like her:

    ***She quickly ticks off the people who work for her, tallies how many kids they have. “Do I want to hurt these people?” she asks.***

    Good for her :)

  12. pantanlones en fuego says:

    She looks so much better natural.

  13. starbuck55 says:

    She has a beautiful and unique voice. But she is a hypocrite. Kudos to her for doing an au natural photo shoot but she’s not natural. She had a very obvious boob job done and who knows what else. She portrays herself as one thing but is not that at all. I think it’s sad that a person that young has all of that responsibility on them. That’s burnout waiting to happen. Good for her for trying to tackle her mental health issues but she still sounds pretty lost to me, although definitely better than she used to be. It would be nice to see her alone for awhile and not jumping around from guy to guy and just being so co-dependent. Would be cool if she matured into someone like Pink, who I love. Lots of time for growth, she’s young. And if she truly is off the drugs, good for her.

  14. h3Rh1GHN3SS says:

    Love her honesty!

  15. amilou says:

    This is a dumb observation, but I like that they didn’t airbrush her armpit into alien oblivion — the treatment women’s pits get on every cover ever.

  16. Naddie says:

    What she said about women always being seen as preys reminded me of that guy who tried to kiss Beyonce. She has power, money, status, her freaking husband was there and also a crowd, still he felt free to do that.

  17. Grey says:

    I thought she was a model. She’s a musician?

  18. serena says:

    I really like her, she’s committed to good causes and speaks up. And yes, that cover shoot is beautiful.

  19. Kay says:

    Not saying she’s an addict but if you’re self medicating with drugs and alcohol it’s usually pretty rare that you can just suddenly switch over to casually drinking a glass of wine here and there. I guess I just hate to see this presentation of moderation because like it’s so rarely the case and it makes people say shit to people who do have addiction issues like why can’t you just cut back?

  20. Yes Doubtful says:

    That hair color and style suits her. I’m glad to hear she’s gotten away from drugs, hopefully she’s also surrounding herself with better people too. MGK and G Easy were toxic.

  21. Eenie Googles says:

    The 2007 hair in the bottom pic. Yuck.

  22. Dani says:

    I wish people knew more of Halsey when she was all over tumblr. The picture she paints now and the picture she painted then…not the same at all. I do enjoy her music, but as a person, I don’t care for her at all.