Hayley Williams is getting extremely candid about her mental health.
The singer joined Zane Lowe on the latest episode of Apple Music’s “Beats 1” radio show and opened up about depression, suicidal thoughts and why her Paramore bandmates and her dog are some of the most important people in her life.
While discussing her forthcoming solo debut, Petals For Armor, Williams revealed recording 2017’s After Laughter with Paramore was a rough time.
“During After Laughter, it was really rough,” she said. “My dog is the reason I’m alive, because he would’ve been waiting on me to get home, no matter what. You know how little sweet little puppies sit and they wait, I couldn’t think about it. Whoa, never cried in an interview before.”
And while fighting back tears she said, “I just couldn’t. And I’m glad, you know? Because life is still hard. It didn’t become a breeze overnight or anything and it’s been years and it’s still not a breeze, but it’s so rich and now that I’m taking account of all these feelings and I’m feeling all of them, there’s this beautiful rainbow versus just the deep end.
Thankfully, her bandmates were there when she needed support, particularly guitarist Taylor York.
“The way that I experience my anger is heat in my face, it’s visceral. I think I mostly tap into it without shame when it’s for the sake of somebody else,” Williams explained. “When it’s for me I go straight into shame… Taylor’s the first person that ever told me anger is neither a bad nor a good emotion. It’s just an emotion. It’s a feeling. It’s a thing. You don’t have to assign it to something. Just let it breathe. Just feel it. I had the hardest time being angry while we were writing After Laughter and I clearly had a lot of to be mad about.”
She added, “But I was depressed. And I think often depression is masking other pointed feelings.”
Petals For Armor is set to drop May 8.
If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, resources are available. In case of an emergency, please call 911 for immediate help.
The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention, Depression Hurts and Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 all offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.