///Portraits Of Justin Bieber And Selena Gomez

Selena Gomez Realized Social Media Was 'Toxic' Thanks To Ex Justin Bieber

Home / MSN / Selena Gomez Realized Social Media Was 'Toxic' Thanks To Ex Justin Bieber

By Afouda Bamidele on October 3, 2023 at 1:24 PM EDT

Selena Gomez is opening up about the root of her disdain for social media!

The former Disney child star, who has been vocal about the toxic side of social media and never hesitates to log off from time to time, is tracing her love-hate relationship with the platforms to her ex-boyfriend, Justin Bieber!

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Selena Gomez Says Justin Bieber Heartbreak Made Her Quit Instagram

While speaking about the fast rise of her beauty company Rare Beauty, the "Come and Get It" songstress got personal about how she sees social media.

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Selena Gomez at the 80th Annual Golden Globe Awards
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Gomez recalls that she began seeing the negative effects of being on Instagram and the likes shortly after her breakup from Bieber. The former lovebirds were undoubtedly a power couple who took Hollywood by storm for seven years — from 2011 to 2018.

At the time, she was also recovering from her kidney transplant, and became sensitive to the toxicity that abounded on social media. "I had just gotten my heart broken. I didn’t need to see what everyone was doing," she recalled while speaking to Fast Company.

She continued, "Then there were those moments of not feeling positive about how I looked because of what I’d see on Instagram. Wow, I wish my body looked like that." As a result, she decided she was done with it, handed her password to her assistant and logged off.

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However, that didn't mean that her hiatus from these platforms saved her from the wrath of trolls. She remembered infamous incident in 2018 when paparazzi shots of Gomez in a bikini on a boat in Australia were leaked.

The former child star had gained some weight and her surgery scar was evident, leading to disparaging remarks about her body. Gomez shared that people came for her because she no longer "had a teenager's body."

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Justin Bieber is seen walking together with Selena Gomez outside his hotel in Miami Beach
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It was made more evident to her during a fitting for a fashion magazine where "none of the sample sizes were fitting, and that would make me feel embarrassed." Never one to back down, the "Only Murders In Building" actress decided to end her Instagram hiatus to send a strong message.

"The beauty myth- an obsession with physical perfection that traps modern woman in an endless cycle of hopelessness, self consciousness, and self-hatred as she tries to fulfill society’s impossible definition of flawless beauty. I chose to take care of myself because I want to, not to prove anything to anyone.

Wind in her sails. 🌈💜," she wrote in a post that garnered over 3 million likes.

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Gomez Was Afraid To Discuss Her Health Challenges With Her Fans

Despite the multi-talented pop icon's love-hate relationship with social media, she credits it for giving her the avenue to be real with her fans about hr health.

You may recall that it was during a 2020 Instagram Live with her friend Miley Cyrus that Gomez shocked the world with her bipolar disorder diagnosis.

However, the "Wizards of Waverly places" alum admits it wasn't an easy thing to do, especially because of was afraid of what her fans would think. I grew up being a people pleaser," Gomez explained. "I had a responsibility at a very young age—young people were looking up to me. I didn’t know who I was. Having that responsibility would make me walk on eggshells a lot."

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She added, "I thought maybe it would be damaging to tell people who I am. It started to become a threat that freaked me out. Well, if you’re not right, then you can’t work."

However, looking back at the pivotal moment that she believed changed her life, the 31-year-old admits it was a "really hard season." In her words:

"It was my highs and my lows, and I didn’t know what to do, so I couldn’t control it. I would want to cancel things. It was just a tormented feeling. That’s why, when I found out my diagnosis, it was just, ‘Oh, okay, I feel a bit relieved, I understand a bit more."

Gomez has since been committed to her message of removing the stigma from mental illness, using her resources, times, and influence.

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