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A couple months ago Mariah Carey revealed that she has Bipolar II disorder and how she struggled with accepting her condition. “Until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant fear someone would expose me,” she said. “It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn’t do that anymore. I sought and received treatment, I put positive people around me and I got back to doing what I love — writing songs and making music.”

The “We Belong Together” singer has now talked about her condition, even more, explaining where she believes it stems from during a candid interview with The Guardian. The 48-year-old cites her first marriage with Sony Music executive Tommy Mottola, who was 20 years her senior, as mentally and emotionally abusive. “It also wounded me,” she said. “When you have to control your own emotions constantly and be aware of every move you make and pretty much ask permission to exist, it affects your life.”

Looking at her childhood, Mariah says being biracial impacted her more than she knew, recalling a time her friend cried when seeing her father because she had never seen a Black person before. “I had to go through so much in my childhood just to feel accepted and feel worthy of existing on Earth because I felt so different from everybody else growing up, because I was biracial, because I was so ambiguous-looking and because we didn’t have the money to escape whatever the everyday realities of life were.”

Mariah’s older sister’s life path also affected her since she was arrested numerous times for prostitution, resulting in Mariah having to pay for her rehab. “[Alison’s troubles] turned me into a very guarded person, and a very prudish person on a lot of levels,” she said. “I don’t think it’s for me to feel guilty about decisions that other people made with their lives. I do as much, privately, as anybody would do for people who have not been very considerate of me, to put it mildly.”