Mariah Carey blames her bipolar II disorder on the self-esteem issues she developed due to her biracial background.
Mariah went public with her mental health battle in April (18) – having been diagnosed years earlier following a breakdown.
The star’s father Alfred was of African American and Afro-Venezuelan descent – and her mother Patricia’s family disowned her for marrying a black man – an abandonment that upset the singer.
In an interview with newspaper The Guardian, she opened up about her difficult childhood’s effect on her mental health, saying that experiencing an identity crisis as a child is at the root of the problems she faces today.
“It was a combination of being biracial and experiencing the darker side of life,” she said. “My mom experienced a lot of racism as an opera singer because she was married to a black man.”
Although she is mixed-race, some of Mariah’s school friends did not know her background due to her fair skin – and one pal screamed when she met her father.
“She burst into tears because she had never seen a black person, “the star explained. “I just remember how that impacted on me.”
The pop diva even admits she wishes she had been born with darker skin so there was less ambiguity about her background.
“What can I do? I can’t go in the sun,” she added. “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.”
In the candid chat Mariah also revealed she had been a victim of harassment in the music industry and spoke about her first marriage to record executive Tommy Mottola. She has accused him of controlling behaviour – claims he denies.
The Touch My Body singer said she was strengthened by the relationship, which ended in 1997, but also feels it “wounded” her as she felt she had to “ask permission to exist”.