So early this morning that it was basically last night, Demi Lovato let us know on their social media and on their podcast “4D With Demi Lovato” that they are non-binary. Moving forward the singer will be using they/them pronouns.
On Twitter and Instagram, Lovato wrote, “Every day we wake up, we are given another opportunity & chance to be who we want & wish to be. I’ve spent the majority of my life growing in front of all of you… you’ve seen the good, the bad, & everything in between.”
“Not only has my life been a journey for myself, I was also living for those on the other side of the cameras,” their message continued. “Today is a day I’m so happy to share more of my life with you all — I am proud to let you know that I identify as non-binary & will officially be changing my pronouns to they/them moving forward.”
Demi Lovato’s absolutely right — there have been few pop stars of their level who we also watched grow up from when they were 8 years old cheesing for clicks with a literal purple dinosaur on Barney & Friends (ok though, follow me here, in retrospect, being best friends with a dinosaur is the definition of queer culture). Then becoming an unrivaled Disney Channel legend, which included being pushed into the limelight at such a young age, and forced into the center of very public — and often invasive — discussions of eating disorders, mental health, and addiction.
Along the way of course Demi’s given us a lot of iconic queer anthems — you and I both know that to this very day 2015’s “Cool for the Summer” will be played at no less than three of your sweaty post-vax summer parties — but I’ve always believed that part of the reasons we’ve connected with Demi is because they are fam, you know? Holding on tight when it feels like the darkness is going to overwhelm, battling back from the literal fucking brink and somehow (always somehow) making it to the next day, battle wounds open but finding the strength to smile or cry? Every queer person knows that feeling.
Demi maybe grew up alongside us, and all the ways they’ve been thrust to center stage may not have been their choice, but by owning that stage in all of their messy vulnerabilities and never shying away from us — Demi has let us in and allowed us to see small slivers of ourselves beneath the glamour and squad and House of Mouse or pop star leotards. To be honest, every time I see Demi Lovato, I am just so happy that they are still here. Every moment that they keep breaking through another narrow box that Hollywood or the music industry has put on them (in March they came out as pansexual) is a fuck you and a triumph.
I’m doing this for those out there that haven’t been able to share who they truly are with their loved ones. Please keep living in your truths & know I am sending so much love your way xox
— Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) May 19, 2021
Demi Lovato ended their post by noting that this new chapter “opens up another layer of vulnerability for me” and that hit like a gut punch. For a star who has already shared so much, even when it was painful, to be willing to lay open bare again? Whew.
But there’s the laying bare that hurts and the laying bare that heals. There’s coming into yourself. There’s another day that you’re here and you’re ten toes down, doing the damn thing.