After "the hardest couple of years I’ve been through,” Mariah Carey is opening up about a battle with bipolar disorder that began in 2001 after a public breakdown. And while it's been a rocky road to recovery, Carey says she's in a good place.

In an interview with People published Wednesday (April 11), Carey says a tumultuous relationship with ex-fiance James Packer in recent months certainly didn't help her condition, but now, she's letting go of stigma surrounding the disorder, and is addressing it publicly.

“Until recently I lived in denial and isolation and in constant fear someone would expose me,” she says. “It was too heavy a burden to carry and I simply couldn’t do that anymore. I sought and received treatment, I put positive people around me and I got back to doing what I love — writing songs and making music.”

Carey says symptoms of her bipolar II disorder include bouts of depression and "irritability, sleeplessness and hyperactivity," which collectively manifest as a low-grade mania. Now, she's taking medication and is in therapy.

“For a long time I thought I had a severe sleep disorder,” she explains. “But it wasn’t normal insomnia and I wasn’t lying awake counting sheep. I was working and working and working...I was irritable and in constant fear of letting people down. It turns out that I was experiencing a form of mania. Eventually I would just hit a wall. I guess my depressive episodes were characterized by having very low energy. I would feel so lonely and sad — even guilty that I wasn’t doing what I needed to be doing for my career.”

And fans immediately flooded the singer's Instagram comments section with support.

"So happy you're so open. We love you and will stand by you darling," one noted, while another said "We each have our own struggles, nothing to be ashamed of — it all makes us stronger. Thank you for sharing."

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