Hayley Williams, the singer of the popular rock band, Paramore, recently opened up about her rocky marriage and tumultuous divorce from ex-husband, Chad Gilbert.
According to the rocker, her marriage was toxic from the start and left her only weighing 91 pounds immediately following the divorce proceedings.
As a coping mechanism and a way to forget the emotional trauma she had been through in the relationship with Gilbert, Williams revealed she turned to alcohol, only exacerbating the mental issues and her depression at hand.
The 31-year-old singer recently spoke with The Guardian and explained how her marriage to Gilbert had effectively made her emotionally unwell and clamoring for a life of happiness and normalcy.
“He probably looks at me like the villain,” Williams said, not offering too many details on her relationship with Gilbert. “Throwing around my version of someone else’s story doesn’t feel fair, which is funny because I don’t necessarily think it should be fair. Especially not after the s–t I went through.” Ironically, Williams knew that marriage to Gilbert wasn’t the best decision after having dated for eight years, but still went through with it.
Even though Williams wasn’t totally convinced that she wanted to be married, or at least to Gilbert, she was enamored with the idea of marriage and being able to start their own family, thus precipitating the two exchanging their vows.
“I wanted the whole thing — the family — and I thought I might even stop doing music for a while to do that,” she confessed. And retrospectively, she was shocked that her husband would encourage her to quit doing the one thing that she loved the most — music. “Give up the thing that’s the most precious to me? Are you kidding me?” she said.
At the time of the divorce proceedings, Williams wasn’t aware of how bad her weight had gotten or the seriousness of her spiraling mental health issues. Only after she saw pictures from the promo of Paramore’s ‘After Laughter’ album did she realize how bad things had gotten.
“It wasn’t until I saw the pictures that I was like, there’s no hiding that I’m not OK now,” Williams said, referring to her dramatically unhealthy weight. “And part of me enjoyed that — if people know I’m not OK, they won’t get too close.”
Even when her bandmates were able to get Williams eating again, she subsequently turned to abusing alcohol as a coping mechanism. The lead singer saw her addiction as ‘looking to break free from a prison that I’d put myself in and to also forget at the same time’.
And while it’s likely that Williams was in some sort of depressive state, she didn’t want to be associated with the word ‘depression’.
“What I hated was at the time it was still sort of new to see the word ‘depression.’ it became such a hot-button word, almost clickbait,” she shared. “And it scared me to become part of that conversation, especially if I wasn’t even sure what was actually going on with me.”
Williams was able to channel the hurt and raw emotions in her new solo album, Petals for Armor, which is set to be released on May 8.