Selena Gomez rings equally vulnerable and defiant in a revealing new interview for the May issue of GQ. In the cover story, the pop star set the record straight on her 2014 stint in rehab — but made it clear that she's not happy to discuss it. When writer Zach Baron asked her about her time in rehab, Gomez cut him off right away — “No, no, no, no, no” — and reacted, as Baron writes, with "[frustration] and disgust." When she did answer, she essentially said that everyone needs to back off from her personal life and her struggle with lupus. "First off, this is something that everyone always wants to fixate on. I got diagnosed with lupus. My mom had a very public miscarriage. So I had to cancel my tour. I needed time to just be okay." (The profile also notes that Gomez, 23, mistakenly said she underwent "leukemia" instead of chemotherapy, a common treatment for lupus that Gomez says she received at two different rehab locations.)
The singer and actress didn't hold back on addressing the larger issue at hand and the reason that we're still talking about her battle with the illness so long after the fact: The public's fixation on her past. "It's really frustrating," she said. "My past seems to be way more fascinating for people than my future, which bums me out." Gomez was particularly pointed in discussing the media's ruthless scrutiny of teenage stars who grew up in the limelight. "We’re easy targets," she explained. "Every single kid who was brought up like this is an easy target. It’s disgusting, because it’s interesting to grown adults that these kids go through weird things because they’re figuring out, ‘Do I like this? Do I love this? Maybe I love this person.'"
She also credits overexposure via Twitter and Instagram with fueling tabloid gossip, and has a theory about why, exactly, people are so enthralled by the trials and tribulations of child stars turning into adults. "Because it’s, I don’t know, fun, maybe? It’s like watching a car crash as you’re driving past it. You want to watch it." She's also got a solid plan for overcoming everyone's obsession with the ups and downs of her formative years: Do good work, and change the conversation. "I just have to be patient and make great things with quality, from producing to singing to acting," she said. "And one by one, I will be able to change the dialogue and people won’t care about everything that’s happened to me."