Singer Demi Lovato has always been very open about their struggles and their identity, particularly after their 2018 overdose, which brought on three strokes and a heart attack. The singer has been in and out of rehab facilities for many years now, and has been open with their sobriety journey— sharing with the world both their highs, and their lows. Recently, Lovato has also opened up about their fluid sexuality, after coming out as queer back in 2017. Lovato is now speaking candidly about their coming out journey, and how discovering their sexuality has helped them discover who they are as a person.
Demi Lovato, who broke off a three-month engagement with actor Max Ehrich last year, believes that the breakdown of that relationship really catalyzed their queer journey. “When I started getting older, I started realizing how queer I really am,” Lovato stated. “This past year I was engaged to a man, and when it didn’t work, I was like, ‘this is a huge sign.’ I thought I was going to spend my life with someone. Now that I wasn’t going to, I felt this sense of relief that I could live my truth.”
While the singer may have only recently begun to fully explore this side of them, they believe that their coming out process began far earlier, citing the classic ‘90s film Cruel Intentions as a catalyst for figuring out their sexuality. “It was definitely when I was young and should not have been watching Cruel Intentions, but I did,” they told Queer Eye star Tan France in an interview last year. “It was that scene where [Sarah Michelle Gellar and Selma Blair] made out on the park lawn, and I was just like, ‘Oh, wait a minute, I really like that!’”
However, even with these realizations, it was going to be a long time before Demi Lovato felt comfortable enough to share this aspect of their identity with the world. As they continued to explore her queer identity privately, they turned to music as a way in which to explore her authentic self. The singer admits that they wrote songs about girls which fans assumed were about men, and was surprised that no one caught on. “I’m surprised that some of them didn’t figure out that some of the songs were for certain people,” they reflected. “I was sharing it with the world, yet I wasn’t being completely obvious with what I was talking about. Music was my safe space.”
While coming out is a difficult and complicated process for anyone, it is a particularly difficult process to navigate when you are a world famous celebrity. Lovato explains that she came out in three separate phases. When they were 17 they told all of their friends and their sister that they were queer. Then they told their parents, and when they were ready, they eventually told the public. Back in 2016, the singer explained that they didn’t need to label their sexuality. And in 2018, they described their sexuality as ‘fluid.’ As the years have gone by, Lovato has become increasingly open and candid about their sexuality, as well as the details of their coming out journey. They has reflected candidly about what it was like to tell their parents, describing the experience as ‘emotional’ and ‘really beautiful.’
The singer continues to speak openly about their own feelings as they navigate their identity, and seems to recognize the importance of their candor for the queer community. Demi Lovato has shown the world that a person’s sexuality, as well as their identity as a whole, is fluid and ever-changing. In refusing to be defined through strict categories and labels, Lovato has been able to not only be their authentic self, but share their authentic self with the world.