Singer and actress Demi Lovato has been in the entertainment news cycle for the past few days. News broke out and quickly started to trend after she was found catatonic after taking too many currently-undescribed opioids. She was rushed to the hospital, where she was reportedly in stable condition.
Following the news, her family thanked friends and fans for the well wishes and thoughts, but also asked for privacy during this troubled time.
There’s been an outpour of support for Lovato, as many celebrities went to social media to share their thoughts on her situation.
“I love @DDLovato so much. It breaks my heart that she is going through this. She is a light in this world, and I am sending my love to her and her family.” TheEllenShow
“I love u @ddlovato” Ariana Grande
“Like all of you I am reeling at the news about Demi. All of us love her and need to pray for her to get well. She is a fighter. #prayfordemi” Nick Jonas
“My whole heart and my whole soul is with @ddlovato today. I adore you and so does the entire world. You will fight this and you will come out of it even stronger. Addiction is powerful beyond measure, but you can defeat it. I love you.” Ruby Rose
“Love u @ddlovato ❤thinking of you + your family + fans + friends praying for you and thinking of you ” Kesha
“Sending Prayers for Demi Lovato you just never know what people are going through so please have compassion & no jokes🙅🏾 but let’s be encouraging so she will get the help she needs❤” Missy Elliott
“Hang in there @ddlovato – sending good energy and love.” Adam Lambert
On the not-so-supportive side of the conversation around Lovato, we’ve seen people reacting to the meme that popular Youtuber PewDiePie sent out and then later deleted after the meme rubbed many people the wrong way.
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) July 26, 2018
The meme poked fun at the initial reports of the singer overdosing on heroin.
He later apologized for the meme, but the internet remained divided on the matter. Some called the sharing of the meme tone deaf, while others said it was merely dark humor and not a personal attack on Lovato herself.
Deleted meme. I didnt mean anything with it and I didnt fully know about the situation. I realize now it was insensitive, sorry!
— ƿ૯ωძɿ૯ƿɿ૯ (@pewdiepie) July 26, 2018
We’re seeing little bits of information come forth, like the emergency call from the incident that’s currently circulating on social media.
“We do have the paramedics responding now […] We are going with lights and sirens […] You should be hearing the sirens real soon,” the audio reveals. “Wait, no sirens, please, right?”
It is assumed that the caller didn’t want to bring more attention to the situation, but some critics continue to raise their eyebrows at the request. Regardless, the sirens couldn’t be silenced.
“No, no, no, this is a medical emergency. I don’t have control over that. Sorry about that […] This is definitely a medical emergency for her and we need to get there as fast as possible.”
Demi Lovato’s story has shaken the social consciousness in many ways. While Lovatics (Demi Lovato fans) are sharing their love and support for her, many others are wondering what her story will do as far as creating a bigger conversation around the “opioid epidemic” that’s plaguing many parts of the world.
In a nutshell, the “opioid epidemic” is the over reliance on opioids. They’re great at helping people who are in pain but they’re also very addictive.
So much so that many people who have had to rely on them have become addicted to them. According to NewsHub, “The opioid epidemic cost the United States an estimated $504 billion in 2015 […]. In October 2017, President Donald Trump declared the country’s opioid crisis a ‘public health emergency.’”
Lovato was saved by Narcan, a substance that NewsHubs writes “bind to activate receptors in the brain, blocking pain, slowing breathing, and making you feel calmer. But in the case of an overdose from opioids, you could stop breathing and become unconscious.”
It’s difficult not to think of other high profile celebrities who were victims of opioid overdoses such as Prince, Michael Jackson, and Tom Petty. And these are merely the high-profile deaths. Many names of other victims never make it into the news.
This is why, with the story of Demi Lovato still fresh on the collective conscious, many people are hoping that there will be more action taken against the opioid epidemic. It was declared a “public health emergency” but that was last year. Not much has happened since then.
Lovato has been open with her fight against addiction and has become one of the leading voices of mental health issues. She’s bounced back from her previous issues, so it’s undoubted that she’ll bounce back again. If her song “Sober” is any indication of her strength in being unflinchingly honest and seeking help, we should expect a phoenix-like revival of the singer in the coming year. Her recent troubles are fuel her on-going war against addiction.