Joanne singer Lady Gaga may be one of the world’s biggest stars, but on Monday the Mother Monster took the time to stop by a New York homeless shelter for LGBT youth to share her own experience as a survivor of trauma, distribute plenty of gifts, and play a little music. When she showed up, the crowd burst into excited screams, but things took a serious tone.
“I told the kids today, ‘I suffer from PTSD.’ I’ve never told anyone that before,” she said during the visit to Harlem’s Ali Forney Center, in collaboration with the TODAY Show. “But the kindness that’s shown to me by doctors as well as my family, and my friends, it’s really saved my life.”
“These children are not just homeless or in need. Many of them are trauma survivors,” she noted. “They’ve been rejected in some type of way.” It’s something that Gaga empathizes with.
Gaga led the youth in a guided meditation, which she said helps keep her relaxed in the face of her struggle with mental illness. She also tweeted about the experience, noting that “secrets keep you sick with shame.” It’s a message she’s been spreading for years: her 2011 hit “Born This Way” has become an enduring anthem for the LGBT community, and the Born This Way Foundation attempts to help youth overcome bullying.
“I also believe that kindness is the cure to violence and hatred around the world,” she said.