Boybander-turned-solo artist Liam Payne is opening up about his time with One Direction, and how he battled mental health issues during his time with the band.

In an interview with The Sun, the singer revealed that he hid a lot of his feelings and tried to put on a brave face. He said,

“Going out and putting that happy smile on my face and singing the songs, honestly, sometimes it was like putting on one of those costumes. Underneath the costume, people don’t really see what’s going on.”

Liam’s desire to hide or mask what’s going on internally is actually pretty common among those who struggle with their mental health.

He added that part of the problem was the extremely fast pace at which the band moved, which became a lot to handle, and how he wished that sometimes they could have stopped to enjoy what they had accomplished. He also confessed that the band taking a break was what they needed to heal.

Luckily, Liam said that he’s feeling much better now in his solo career. In fact, he said he’s a “completely different person.” The 1D hiatus (or, let’s be honest, breakup) has helped him reconnect with his love for music, instead of it just feeling like a job.

We applaud Payne for sharing his story, and for helping add to the conversation to reduce stigmas against mental health.

His story also reminded us that we need to be respectful when it comes to our expectations of celebrities. As we’ve seen with other celebs like Lady Gaga, fame comes with a price. It can create or exacerbate someone’s struggles when they are in the limelight. Just because someone is in the public eye, doesn’t mean they owe us anything. But we are glad when people in positions of power use their platform to inform others when they feel comfortable doing so.

Categories: Health