The first two episodes of Demi Lovato’s new docuseries “Dancing With the Devil” have been released on YouTube and provide an inside look at Lovato’s complicated journey with drug use, sobriety and her eventual overdose. The docuseries focuses on the events leading up to her near-fatal overdose in 2018, in which she relapsed after six years of sobriety.
The New York Times recently reported, that following the overdose, she woke up legally blind in the intensive care unit and it took her over two months to recover enough sight to read a book. In an interview with Tracy Smith of CBS News, Lovato revealed that doctors said she would have died if someone had found her five or ten minutes after they had.
The documentary was supposed to air in 2018; however, following her hospitalization, Lovato stepped away from the spotlight and filming came to a sudden halt. Last spring, she decided she was ready to finish telling her story and said she wanted to set the record straight about what happened. The series features honest conversations with friends and family members.
In the documentary, Lovato said that she “crossed a line that I’d never crossed in the world of addiction.”
Leading up to her overdose, she began using heroin and crack cocaine recreationally and developed a heavy addiction to both drugs. Lovato has been very open about her struggles with bipolar disorder, anorexia nervosa, self-harm, bullying and drug addiction, which all played a role in her overdose. She traces her drug use to many factors in her life; however, she pointed to the complicated relationship she had with her dad and his death as a major reason why she struggled with mental health problems.
Lovato rose to fame as a child actress appearing in hit films like “Camp Rock” and the television show “Sonny with a Chance.” She transitioned into pursuing a singing career and released numerous studio albums and toured the world performing. From the outside, this seems like a dream life to live. But constantly finding yourself in the public eye can be overwhelming.
“I crossed a line I’d never crossed in addiction.”Demi Lovato
The pressure involved in entering the spotlight at a young age can have detrimental effects on a person’s psyche as they grow up. Lovato’s friends pointed to her eating disorder as something that consumed her life and she said she felt immense pressure to look a certain type of way, especially when she was on stage during concerts. Lovato said she felt like she never had control over many of the decisions in her life and she was desperate to be able to take charge of something, which led to restrictive eating habits and overexercising.
There was an unspoken expectation that Lovato should use her stardom to be a role model for others, especially young girls. However, her sister said this was not something that she was ready for, and it made her feel like she had to be perfect all the time.
Lovato has been criticized for her actions; however, she is now using her platform as a means for social change and activism. She is a fierce advocate in fighting for LGTBQIA+ rights, mental health promotion and anti-bullying campaigns, and created this documentary to provide insight into the negative outcomes that result from drug addiction.
If you are interested in watching the series, it can be found on Lovato’s YouTube channel. The next two episodes are expected to premiere in the coming weeks.