Nearly a month after Selena Gomez announced she would be taking time off from work to focus on her ongoing battle with lupus, her friend Michael B. Jordan is voicing his support for the singer. Jordan, whose mother also suffers from lupus, told Entertainment Tonight that he's glad Gomez is taking time to prioritize her health in the face of this chronic disease. “Everybody comes to terms with it in their own time, and she’s finally taking the time to deal with it and address it,” he said. “My advice would be: Stay optimistic, don’t succumb to how you feel in the moment — because it will pass and get better — and surround yourself with positive people.” Last month, Gomez said in a statement that she wanted to be proactive about maintaining her well-being, citing mental health issues. "I've discovered that anxiety, panic attacks, and depression can be side effects of lupus, which can present their own challenges," she said at the time. Lupus is an autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to become overactive and attack the body. This causes inflammation in important tissues and organs, such as the heart, kidneys, skin, and joints. Lupus isn't a direct cause of mental health disorders, like anxiety and depression, but it can certainly aggravate them when they're already present. In cases like Gomez's, anxiety and depression can worsen with the added stress of dealing with a chronic illness. Jordan, who has been an outspoken advocate for lupus awareness, also opened up about his experience watching his mother struggle with the disease. "Just coming to terms with the fact that she’s not healthy, and there’s no cure for it, is really hard," he told ET from Lupus LA’s eighth annual Get Lucky for Lupus celebrity poker tournament in Hollywood on Wednesday. "So you have to be extremely optimistic about finding a cure.”
He continued: “The most frustrating part for the family around somebody who has lupus is that you just want to do something to help, but there’s not a lot you can do. So for me, the best way I can help is to just be present at events like this and to raise awareness and money, because ultimately, research and time spent is what will correct the case.” For the time being, lupus sadly remains a chronic disease without a cure. While there are various treatments for the symptoms of lupus, Jordan is right that it's very important to take time to take care of yourself, as Gomez is doing.