Dave Quinn
August 22, 2017 01:30 PM

Mariah Carey is one of music’s most extravagant stars, bringing her signature glitz and glamour to red carpets, magazine covers, and concert stages everywhere. But behind all the glitter is a woman who still struggles with her confidence.

During a candid interview with the New York Post‘s Page Six backstage at Carey’s concert at Madison Square Garden, the “Heartbreaker” songstress revealed that she doesn’t see herself as the self-assured diva her fans think she is.

“I just feel like I am a regular human being and I deserve the same respect as anybody else,” Carey told the publication, while sitting in her all-white dressing room with Jo Malone candles. “I have always had low self-esteem, and people do not recognize that.”

“Growing up different, being biracial, having the whole thing where I did not know if I fit in … That is why music became such a big part of my life, because it helped me overcome those issues,” she continued. “Sometimes it is hard to let your guard down.”

Mariah Carey
FilmMagic/FilmMagic

That also makes it hard for Carey to trust the people around her. “I do think to myself, ‘Did they mean this? Or do they not really mean it?’ ” she revealed. “And that is with everybody — it is not just with three people or just one.”

She added: “I can’t measure what type of respect I deserve — I really can’t.”

RELATED VIDEO: Mariah Carey Enjoys Spa Night With Twins Moroccan & Monroe — and Even Pet Pooch Cha Cha!

Elsewhere in the chat, Carey opened up about life before she found fame.

“I remember it not being easy getting a record deal,” she said. “Making demos in the middle of the night, sleeping on the floor in the studio, being broke with no food. My go-to meal was [Newman’s Own] sauce. Me and my friend would split the pasta and sauce for, like, a week. Or it was, like, a bagel and iced tea … The guy would give it to me at the deli for free.”

These days, she has a little more money for food — but is still hustling, staying busy with her Vegas residency and her All the Hits tour this summer alongside Lionel Richie.

Among her other projects? “I am working on a new fragrance,” Carey said. “I don’t have a name … But it is with Elizabeth Arden. It smells like success. There is also a secret song I have been working on.”

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