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Kanye West Reveals What It's Like Inside His Brain During A Bipolar Episode — 'You Feel Everyone Wants To Kill You'

kanye west bipolar disorder
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May 28 2019, Published 1:14 p.m. ET

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Kanye West is opening up about his mental health and bipolar disorder diagnosis. In a rare and candid interview with David Letterman, the rapper detailed his manic “episodes,” subsequent hospital stays and his desire to break the stigma surrounding mental illness.

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Kanye, 41, explained why it was necessary for him to stay on top of his bipolar medications. "If you don’t take medication every day to keep you at a certain state, you have a potential to ramp up,” he said while on You start acting erratic,” he said. . “And it can take you to a point where you can even end up in the hospital.”

kanye west bipolar disorder
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"You start acting erratic,” he said.

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kanye west bipolar disorder
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"When you ramp up, it expresses your personality more,” the father of four explained. “You can become almost more adolescent in your expression. This is my specific experience that I’ve had over the past two years, because I’ve only been diagnosed for two years now."

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During his more serious episodes, Kanye explained that he gets paranoid and believes everyone is out to get him. "You feel the government is putting chips in your head. You feel you’re being recorded. You feel all these things,” he said before adding, “You have this moment where you feel everyone wants to kill you. You pretty much don’t trust anyone.”

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In an attempt to facilitate change, Kanye also spoke about his “primitive” hospital stays. "They have this moment where they put you — they handcuff you, they drug you, they put you on the bed, and they separate you from everyone you know," he said. "That’s something that I am so happy that I experienced myself so I can start by changing that moment."

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"Both healthcare professional and the media love to write you off. They love to cut your sentences off halfway," he said. "What you say doesn’t mean as much."

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The "I Love It" rapper believes that the stigma surrounding mental health has allowed him and others to be severely mistreated and criticized. "People are allowed to say anything negative about it and discriminate in any way," Kanye argued.

kanye west bipolar disorder

"This is like a sprained brain, like having a sprained ankle. And if someone has a sprained ankle, you’re not going to push on him more,” he said. “With us, once our brain gets to a point of spraining, people do everything to make it worse. They do everything possible. They got us to that point and they do everything to make it worse."

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