Gaga says her struggle with mental health led to physical ailments like fibromyalgia and made her more self-destructive.
Lady Gaga opened up about her own "mental health crisis" during an acceptance speech at the SAG-AFTRA Foundation's Patron of the Artists Awards Thursday night.
"I began to notice that I would stare off into space and black out for seconds or minutes," Gaga recalled in her 25-minute speech. "I would see flashes of things I was tormented by, experiences that were filed away in my brain with 'I'll deal with you later' for many years because my brain was protecting me, as science teaches us. These were also symptoms of disassociation and PTSD and I did not have a team that included mental health support."
She continued, "This later morphed into physical chronic pain, fibromyalgia, panic attacks, acute trauma responses, and debilitating mental spirals that have included suicidal ideation and masochistic behavior."
"I needed mental health care," the "A Star Is Born" actress said. "I needed someone to see not through me or see the star that I'd become, but rather see in the darkness inside that I was struggling with."
"I wish there had been a system in place...to empower me to say no to things I felt I had to do, a system in place to empower me to stay away from toxic work environments or working with people who were of seriously questionable character," she continued. "There were days that I struggled or couldn't make it to work and I don't want that for other artists or anyone."
"We need to bring mental health into the light," Gaga explained. "We need to share our stories so that global mental health no longer resides and festers in the darkness."
"It is dangerous," she added. "We know this because amongst other shootings and acts of violence just last night there was a shooting in Thousand Oaks by a veteran who was believed to have suffered from untreated post-traumatic stress disorder, which is a mental health issue."
Gaga expressed how her Born This Way Foundation, which promotes "mental wellness", has given her "hope" that we can enact change.
She concluded her heartfelt speech by saying, "Let's change the f--king world!"
Gaga won the Artists Inspiration Award onstage at the SAG-AFTRA Foundation's Patron of the Artists Awards, a fundraiser that "benefits the Foundation's vital assistance and performers programs for SAG-AFTRA artists."