Five celebrities who have addressed mental health in awards speeches, from Lady Gaga to Letitia Wright

'I'm so proud to be part of a film that addresses mental health issues,' Lady Gaga said at the 61st Grammy Awards

Sabrina Barr
Monday 11 February 2019 15:04
Grammys 2019: Lady Gaga wins for song 'Shallow'

When accepting accolades at awards ceremonies, many celebrities use the opportunity to raise awareness of important subjects that are close to their hearts.

On 10 February, Lady Gaga and Letitia Wright addressed the topic of mental health while on stage, at the Grammys and Baftas respectively.

As she picked one of her three Grammys of the night, Lady Gaga expressed her appreciation for starring in a film - A Star Is Born - that makes a point of highlighting mental health issues.

Letitia Wright spoke to the audience at the Baftas about how she recently almost quit acting altogether due to a period of depression she was facing.

Over the past few years, other celebrities including Kesha, Selena Gomez and Gabrielle Union have also used their time on stage at prestigious events to talk candidly about mental heath.

Here are five celebrities who addressed mental health during awards show speeches:

Lady Gaga at the 2019 Grammy Awards

Lady Gaga accepting the award for Best Duo/Group Performance at the 2019 Grammy Awards

While accepting the award for Best Duo/Group Performance for her collaboration with Bradley Cooper on 'Shallow' in A Star Is Born, Lady Gaga praised the Oscar-nominated film for raising awareness of mental health issues.

“I’m so proud to be part of a film that addresses mental health issues. They’re so important,” she said.

“And a lot of artists deal with that and we’ve got to take care of each other. So if you see somebody that’s hurting, don’t look away."

The singer and actor continued, saying that if you're experiencing pain, you should "try to find that bravery within yourself" to confide in someone about your struggles.

Lady Gaga has spoken openly about mental health issues on several occasions in the past.

In November 2018, the star delivered a speech on the topic at the Patron of the Artists Awards ceremony.

“When I speak about mental health, especially when I’m speaking about mine, it is often met with quietness," she said.

"We need to bring mental health into the light.”

Letitia Wright at the 2019 Bafta Awards

BAFTAs 2019: Letitia Wright wins Bafta Rising Star award and thanks God for helping her through depression

On 10 February, Letitia Wright was honoured with the 2019 Bafta Rising Star Award at London's Royal Albert Hall.

While accepting the accolade, the Black Panther star revealed that she'd recently considered quitting acting as a result of her struggles with mental health issues.

"A few years ago, I saw myself in a deep state of depression and I literally wanted to quit acting," the 25-year-old said.

"The only thing that pretty much pulled me out of that was God, my belief, my faith, my family, and an email from Bafta saying that they wanted me to be a part of the Bafta Breakthrough Brits. And I was like, let me try again."

Kesha at the 2016 Billboard Women in Music Awards

Kesha accepting the Trailblazer Award at the 2016 Billboard Women in Music Awards

Three years ago, Kesha was honoured with the Trailblazer Award at the Billboard Women in Music Awards.

The singer delivered a moving speech in which she thanked her peers for their support, referencing her ongoing legal battle against producer Lukasz "Dr Luke" Gottwald.

The singer also spoke about importance of using her platform to raise awareness of mental health problems.

“If I’m lucky enough to have a voice someone will listen to, then I should use it for good, for truth,” she said.

“That is why I have recently spoken openly about some of my struggles including my crippling anxiety and beginning recovery for an eating disorder amongst many other things."

Kesha continued, stating that these are issues that "millions of people around the world" also face.

Selena Gomez at the 2016 American Music Awards

Selena Gomez says she was 'broken inside' during 2016 AMA speech

During the 2016 American Music Awards, Selena Gomez gave an impassioned speech about the positive impact her fans have had on her, having previously felt "broken".

The singer, who accepted the award for Favourite Rock/Pop Female Artist, called off her world tour in August 2016 to focus on her health, having experienced anxiety and depression caused by lupus disease.

"I kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down. But I kept it too much together to where I let myself down. I had to stop, because I had everything and I was absolutely broken inside," she said.

The singer continued, stating that she doesn't want to see her fans posting photos of their bodies on Instagram, as she'd prefer to see "what's in here", gesturing to her heart.

"I'm not trying to get validation, nor do I need it any more. All I can say is I'm so grateful that I have the opportunity to be able to share what I love every day with people that I love," she added.

Gabrielle Union at the 2016 Step Up Inspiration Awards

Gabrielle Union attending the 2016 Step Up Inspiration Awards

Three years ago, Gabrielle Union was honoured at the Step Up Inspiration Awards in Los Angeles for inspiring the "next generation of professional women".

Union took to the stage during the ceremony to speak about the self-esteem issues that she's faced throughout her life.

“Anytime some guy did not return my love, it was because I am a joke and a loser. When I got raped at 19 at my after-school job, it wasn't just some awful coincidence. It was because I was a joke and a loser. When I got divorced, I'm a joke and a loser, of course. My show gets cancelled, I am a joke and a loser," the actor stated.

Union explained how her friends gave her the boost of confidence that she needed, helping her realise that she's "dope and fly and amazing".

“I am fierce and fabulous because I breathe. All of us here in this room, we are worthy, we are valid, our journeys are real and worthwhile, and there's nothing that anyone can do to take that away from us," the Being Mary Jane star added.

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Union recently opened up about how it felt to use a surrogate to carry her child, saying that doing so made her feel as though she was "surrendering to failure".

“People want to see the bump, hear that you got hemorrhoids—they want to know you’re like them. I was like, ‘This is going to seem like the most Hollywood s*** ever. Will I be embraced as a mom?’ It’s terrifying," she told Women's Health.

For mental health support, you can contact charity Mind by calling 0300 123 3393 or texting 86463.

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