Everything Paris Jackson Has Said About Mental Health
On Tuesday, PEOPLE confirmed the 20-year-old daughter of the late Michael Jackson sought help at a treatment facility.
“After a busy year of work engagements that took her all over the globe, Paris decided that she needed to take some time off to reboot, realign and prioritize her physical and emotional health,” a source close to Jackson told PEOPLE. “She checked herself into a treatment facility to aid in her wellness plan and is looking forward to coming out of this revitalized and ready to tackle the exciting new projects that await her.”
“There wasn’t some big event that led to her seeking treatment,” added the source. “This was 100 percent her own decision. No one forced her to get help.”
Addressing the reports, Jackson took to her Instagram on Wednesday morning and wrote, “Yes i’ve taken a break from work and social media and my phone because it can be too much sometimes, and everyone deserves a break, but i am happy and healthy and feeling better than ever!”
The model and singer also revealed that her band, The Sound Flowers, “have some new music we’re stoked to share with y’all!” adding: “hope you guys’ new year started out with lots of love and light and all the things. i’ll be back soon!! xxox.”
In recent years, Jackson has been open about struggling with anxiety and depression, as well as dealing with the trauma from a sexual assault in her teenage years.
“It was just self-hatred … Low self-esteem, thinking that I couldn’t do anything right, not thinking I was worthy of living anymore,” she told the magazine, and later added, “I was crazy. I was actually crazy. I was going through a lot of like, teen angst. And I was also dealing with my depression and my anxiety without any help.”
For Jackson, the incident proved to be the turning point that followed a long battle with self-abuse and drug addiction. Jackson admitted that she had attempted suicide “multiple times” before, but this final episode convinced her to attend a residential therapy program.
Jackson spent her sophomore year and half of junior year at a therapeutic school in Utah. “It was great for me,” she said. “I’m a completely different person.”
Despite her burgeoning rise in the modeling world, Jackson said that she has had “self-esteem issues for a really, really long time” and could understand her dad’s plastic-surgery choices after watching online trolls criticize appearance since she was 12.
“Plenty of people think I’m ugly, and plenty of people don’t,” she said. “But there’s a moment when I’m modeling where I forget about my self-esteem issues and focus on what the photographer’s telling me – and I feel pretty. And in that sense, it’s selfish.”
In April 2017, Jackson came across a viral Tumblr post warning away potential viewers from watching Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why, claiming it “was incredibly irresponsibly handled and puts people in very real danger,” and shared it to her Instagram.
Jackson also wrote her own opinion on the show in the caption, saying, “This is really important to spread towards people that are struggling with depression or anxiety, self-harm, and or suicidal thoughts.”
“This show was an amazing way to get the message across to bullies that they need to stop doing what they are doing,” she continued. “It really did a good job of showing how impactful words and actions can be to other human beings. you can’t just do or say things to people without thinking about how it will affect them.”
Despite the ways it could be helpful in addressing topics such as rape, suicide, and bullying, Jackson addressed the potential negative effects of graphic scenes, writing, “It is also an extremely triggering thing to watch.”
“[P]lease only watch this show with caution and keep in mind that it may put you in a dark place,” she added. “if you are struggling please don’t watch it. if you think you can handle it, please by all means check it out.”
Jackson again touched on her insecurities in August 2017, saying in an interview with i-D Magazine, “Unfortunately in the world we live in it’s almost impossible to feel comfortable in your skin 24/7.”
“Especially with what the media is constantly feeding us,” she continued. “I still have countless insecurities and fears, like everyone else I know. But we’re getting there, slowly but surely. Which is a big reason I want to change this fashion / beauty stigma, so it’s not as difficult for people around the world to feel beautiful just the way they are.”
Last April, Jackson hit back at reports claiming she was out of control. “So apparently people think I’m about to die,” she said, referencing a Page Six report claiming she was headed for a “serious meltdown.”
“My therapist texted me about it laughing though, so that’s good. So I guess to the family members that are talking to all of these news outlets saying they’re worried for me: When is the last time you called me?” she said.
“Prince isn’t worried. Why?” she continued. “Because we talk all the time. We hang out. If you’re worried about me, call me.”
“Umm, no?? i haven’t gone to a clinic,” Jackson wrote in an Instagram story. “Someone doesn’t have to almost die for me to know to be healthy, i’ve already had friends OD and die. that’s enough for me.”
Jackson said in 2017 that ignoring outside negativity has helped her navigate fame.
“The bigger the spotlight, the bigger the target. People can be really cruel. I’ve learned that no matter what you do, you will always receive some kind of ridicule for it. It doesn’t matter if your heart is in the right place—someone will always have a reason to hate you,” she previously told Teen Vogue. “But that being said, I’ve also learned that it really doesn’t matter and that as long as I follow my heart and continue trying to do what’s right, I’m on the right path.”