A source close to the 25-year-old “Sorry, Not Sorry” singer, speculates to PEOPLE that Lovato’s history with addiction hints that she will only seek treatment when she’s ready.
“The thing about an addict is that you become so good at hiding it,” the insider says, adding of Lovato, “She’s a really smart girl. When she had work commitments, she could pull it together. But that’s how she’s always been, and this might not be her rock bottom.”
“Demi has to want to get help. She can’t be forced into rehab or treatment,” the source alleges. “It won’t work.”
The source notes that a lot of Lovato’s longtime friends were left “shocked” and “reeling” from her latest relapse because no one knew that she had allegedly returned to using hard drugs.
“A lot of people knew she was drinking again, but not that she was using drugs again,” the source says. “That was a shock to a lot of those around her, even those who have spent extended periods of time with her over the last several weeks. When she’s slipped up or been close to slipping up in the past, the biggest concern was alcohol.”
Lovato was rushed to the hospital Tuesday morning following the incident at her Hollywood Hills home, hours later appearing “alert and stable,” a close source confirmed to PEOPLE at the time. Her publicist released a statement Tuesday evening confirming Lovato “is awake and with her family who want to express thanks to everyone for the love, prayers and support.”
According to the emergency call audio obtained by TMZ, the star had been unconscious prior to the arrival of EMTs and was revived by her friends with Narcan, an emergency medicine used to reverse the effects of a narcotic overdose. Though reports have indicated the overdose was heroin-related, a source close to Lovato claimed to PEOPLE that it was not.
The Disney Channel alum has battled addiction, mental illness and disordered eating for years. In 2010, she entered treatment, where she was treated for bipolar disorder, bulimia, self-harm and addiction. She relapsed after she left the treatment center, then entered a sober living facility for a year.
But even after treatment, insiders say she still struggled with her private pain. “Demi was never really clean and sober from all of her demons,” a Lovato source told PEOPLE. “She has been fighting depression and anxiety for quite some time — and is still in such a dark place. She was sober for a while, but not completely sober for six years.”
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In June, Lovato hinted that she had relapsed in a new single.
“Mama, I’m so sorry I’m not sober anymore / And daddy please forgive me for the drinks spilled on the floor,” she sang on the heartbreaking piano ballad, “Sober.”
At the end of the track, Lovato sings: “I’m sorry that I’m here again / I promise I’ll get help / It wasn’t my intention / I’m sorry to myself.”
If you or someone you know is in need of help, please contact the SAMHSA substance abuse helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.