Demi Lovato docuseries: Honest look at addiction, healing


If you were born in 1998 or later, chances are you grew up watching or listening to Demi Lovato.

Entering the spotlight at age seven, Lovato was on “Barney & Friends.” 

However, she didn’t become a household name until her Disney Channel debut. 

Lovato starred in “Camp Rock” and “Sunny with A Chance.” Then, she become an international pop star.

For the past decade, Lovato has struggled with an eating disorder and addiction. She first entered rehab in 2011. 

After that, Lovato pioneered the mental health movement.

Lovato has released two full-length documentaries, “Stay Strong” and “Simply Complicated.” 

Both cover heavy topics like mental health, addiction and body issues. But none of them even come close to being as honest as her most recent release, “Dancing with the Devil.”

“Dancing with the Devil” is a YouTube original docuseries. The first two episodes aired last week. There will be two more episodes before the docuseries is complete. 

She also released a spine-tingling single of the same name to accompany the docuseries.

In episode one, “Losing Control,” Lovato, along with her friends, family and team, give an unfiltered take on the past few years of her life.

In 2018, Lovato overdosed on heroin and was hospitalized. No one outside her inner circle knew how severe the overdose was until the docuseries aired. 

Lovato suffered two strokes, a heart attack and brain damage. She permanently impaired her vision and can no longer drive. 

She was also sexually assaulted the night of her overdose. Lovato was on the brink of death—mentally and physically.

Lovato revealed she never meant to become an icon for the mental health movement in episode one. 

But now that she is, Lovato said she feels a responsibility to be honest about her journey. 

In past documentaries, she has tried to cover up the severity of her issues.        

In “Dancing with the Devil,” Lovato is done keeping up walls. This series, addressing such raw and vulnerable topics, brought down any barriers that existed between fans and the truth. 

By doing so, Lovato not only created a stronger bond with her fandom but also helps those who need to know healing isn’t linear.

One thing that the docuseries does well is making sure not to blame her loved ones. 

In episode two, “5 Minutes from Death,” Lovato makes it clear that she developed the ability to hide her addiction well. She was able to seem fine so that her family and friends wouldn’t worry.

 The episode recounts the story of the day before and the night of her overdose. 

This series also teaches the audience how to identify the warning signs of addiction.

 It also can help addicts feel understood. Here is someone, Lovato, who seems to have their life together but is also struggling.

Although Lovato never purposely tried to become a key figure in the mental health movement, she is.  

Her willingness to be vulnerable in such a public way has helped and will continue to help those who currently deal with the same issues.

Lovato is also working on a new album titled “Dancing with the Devil…the Art of Starting Over.” The album will be released on April 2.  It will cover the same topics as the docuseries and feature many popular artists like Ariana Grande.