Just a few years ago, it was unfathomable that social media could make you super famous and wealthy, earning you millions of dollars and millions of fans all at once. But, micro-sites such as TikTok came around, turning ordinary boys and gals into celebrities and showing us what is possible.
But behind all the glitz and glamor is a sinister reality: Mental health issues are widespread among these famous social influencers. Some speak up about their troubles, but many others give up and choose to end it all after their sudden rise to fame.
Here is a list of TikTok stars who have struggled with sudden fame:
The older sister of TikTok’s most famous star, Charlie D’Amelio, Dixie D’Amelio, has publicly shared her mental health challenges with her fans.
The influencer star admitted that she has been seeing therapists helping her cope with mental health problems stemming from the hate she gets for how she presents herself on the internet.
On her 2 Chix podcast episode, she admitted, “I have outbursts of anger and emotion. I come across as bratty and have been getting much hate in my DMs.”
The influencer, who is also one of the biggest stars on social media added, “In the end, if you are unhappy with your life, there is nothing else you care about.”
D’Amelio has also admitted to feeling guilty for being alive and has battled with suicidal thoughts, wondering whether her family, friends, and fans would be better off without her.
With over 30 million TikTok followers, Chase Hudson, aka Huddy, knows first-hand what internet fame tastes like. Huddy shot to fame for his singing, lip sync, and dancing videos and for being a founder of The Hype House, a TikTok collective.
TikTok has been a blessing and a curse for the famous Gen-Z musician. His schoolmates bullied him when he decided to hop onto the social media site. On TikTok, he found a community of fans engaged with his content and loved him.
He continued, “I was a bit of a misfit and very judged, but you guys helped me through so much.When I began social media, I got people who cared about me when no one in school did.”
Huddy, did, however, admit that social media can mess up with your head, and fame has not been easy for someone like him who struggled with self-esteem issues for many years.
Rightfully the queen of TikTok, Charli D’Amelio, receives as much hate as she does love from fans and followers, which has inevitably impacted her mental health, just like her buddy Arian Grande.
The mega-influencer has a history of mental problems and has suffered panic attacks since elementary school.
Charli is the epitome of the strong, independent girl that so many of her Gen-Z followers aspire to be. She struggles to openly display her emotions or vulnerability and would rather bottle everything inside.
With all her fame, she’s had to grow a thick skin and a hard heart to protect herself from the potentially traumatizing comments from haters.
But, this protective or defensive mechanism is unhealthy and worsens her mental health problems, the socialite admits.
“When I come to my breaking point, I will cry continuously for three days and I stop being the Charli that ya’ll know.”
“I get into a really bad and scary place. I’ve kept so much inside and it hurt, especially when everyone feels like they can say anything they want about you when they do not even know you,” the social media star said.
On the upside, Charli is working with a therapist she feels understands her. She also told her fans that the new medication she is on has helped her, and she has fewer mood swings, meltdowns, and post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms.
In his song, Pray, Jaden Hossler begs God to let him die, but in a later verse, he pleads to God not to let him die in his sleep.
The TikTok star, also known as jxdn, plummeted to fame with his prank videos, but he later became a musician. He opened up on his struggle with depression and suicide ideation and, through his popular song, admitted that he really wanted to die during his darkest days of generalized anxiety disorder, despite being so famous.
But, the musician credits his faith in God for his ability to push forward. Speaking to Radio.com, Jaden said, “Anyone can struggle with suicidal thoughts, including celebrities. We need to stop the stigma against people who struggle with mental health problems or do not know what to do.”
“What you need is love when you are at such a point in your life,” he insisted.
TikTok might be all memes, laughs, and dancing, but the ending can be tragic for some stars on the social media platform.
Take, for instance, the case of Megha Thakur, the beloved Canadian influencer who suddenly passed away at age 21.
Megha had amassed close to one million followers on her TikTok. She spoke a lot about body positivity, mental and emotional resilience, and self-advocacy, especially for women of color like her.
A few months before her sudden death, the soft-spoken social media star shared with her fans that she had suffered a heart attack brought on by anxiety and stress.
In the video, she says, “I have really bad anxiety and this turned into stress, which caused a heart attack.”
Megha, seemed to gloss over her heart attack, which is obviously something very serious. Yet, when you really think about it, many of these online stars have put up this wall and are keen on not expressing their weaknesses or struggles, lest they lose their fans’ approval.
In one video, which she captioned YOU’RE in charge of your destiny, Thakur is seen crossing a street in New York. This would be her last post.
While her fans know her as a confident social butterfly, the social influencer has admitted that she had been depressed for years and almost lost her life. But, improving her mental health literacy helped her deal with her problems.
Cooper Noriega is another star whose light dimmed too soon. At just 19, the fast-rising social media influencer was found dead in his parking lot, days after launching a platform where his fans could safely talk about their mental health struggles.
The YouTube and TikTok star revealed his own battle with depression and addiction. “I have struggled with (drug) addiction since I was 9 years old. That sounds crazy but it is what life has given me.”
The star explained that the Discord server he started was so that he could use his influence to spread awareness and normalize the discussion about mental illness.
“If you want to get your emotions out, join the server. I created it because of how much I struggled with mental illness and how much I love you. I want you guys to feel safe and not alone,’’ he said in a TikTok video.
Noriega’s ultimate goal was to open a rehabilitation center where the staff members are trustworthy, and people do not come out traumatized on their recovery journey.
Talking about his battle with drugs and depression, the influencer admitted to Hollywire that he had a mental breakdown, after which he chose to be sober. The young celebrity also lamented that most people on social media are fake, which is quite a statement for someone whose life revolved around social media.
Everything has a positive and negative side—truer words have never been spoken, especially concerning social media. While TikTok has brought overnight riches and success to some, it has also exacerbated a silent pandemic of mental dis-ease among the youngest generation of our time.