Mary Lambert has opened up to Cosmopolitan about the most personal subjects possible.
In an emotional interview with the publication, the singer and spoken-word artist runs through a “laundry list” of trauma that explains why she tried to kill herself as a teenager.
The 28-year-old is likely best known to music fans for her single “Secrets” and also for her featured verse on Macklemore & Ryan Lewis‘ LGBTQ anthem “Same Love.”
And she reveals to Cosmo that music helped turn her life around after an unimaginable series of events that affected her as a child growing up in Washington state.
“Music is beautiful and cathartic but there is something very healing about saying exactly what happened to you and speaking your truth,” Lambert says in the video below, adding:
“I’m still in my own journey of body love and self-love.”
This journey tragically started with the heinous betrayal of a parent.
“I was molested by my father at a really young age,” the singer says.
The ordeal confused Lambert as she struggled to fully understand what had been done to her, what it meant and how she could move forward.
“You don’t know what’s happening, especially when you’re raised in that environment and your brain is forming,” she explains. “There’s no sense of what normal is.”
This is the sort of statement to which we’re guessing nearly all victims of molestation can relate.
As she grew older, Lambert suffered through signs of a then-undiagnosed bipolar disorder, once again unsure how to react to her surroundings and situation.
“I was really living in extremes. I would have the best day ever and then I would come home and I would want to die,” she says.
Horribly, the abuse at the hands of her father would not be the only time Lambert was a victim of sexual assault.
“When I was 16, I snuck into an Army barracks and I was gang-raped,” Lambert says, expounding on how she endured this pain with a traumatized detachment as a result of her past.
“You go into survival mode and go, ‘OK, how do I navigate this situation.'”
About a year later, she came out as a lesbian to her evangelical Christian church. She did not receive a positive response from those around her at the time.
By age 18, she had tried to kill herself.
“Everything hurt so much,” Lambert says of the time, adding:
“The fact that I was abused by my dad. Was raped. Was gay. Was bipolar. Not to mention always being a big girl in the world.
“Just existing in those spaces, of like, I don’t feel at home in my body, I don’t feel at home in this world. What options do I have left?”
Fortunately, Lambert failed – and she also fell involve with music, which she describes now as a “form of healing, almost like self-therapy.”
“I’m so glad I didn’t die – I’m so glad that I’m alive, that I didn’t give in – but it wasn’t easy,” Lambert concludes.
“I feel like there is this canned way we talk about trauma, this canned way we talk about suicide. Like, you just go to Spain and you eat tapas – there’s your healing.
“Real healing is s—ty. It’s dirty and ugly and not easy.”
Thankfully, though, Lambert has come out the other side of this very hard process.
And she’s developed a mantra to guide her through the challenging times.
“It all works out in the end, and if it hasn’t worked out then it’s not the end.”