Kanye West was diagnosed with bipolar disorder a few years ago, and since then, people have speculated about the state of the rapper’s mental health. Now, West is opening up about his experience, which he says has resulted in times when he had to be restrained and drugged.
According to People, West told David Letterman that bipolar disorder causes him to reach a state where everything feels like it’s a conspiracy.
“When you’re in this state, you’re hyper-paranoid about everything,” West said. “Everyone — this is my experience, other people have different experiences — everyone now is an actor. Everything’s a conspiracy. You feel the government is putting chips in your head. You feel you’re being recorded. You feel all these things.”
He said it makes him feel like people are out to harm him and he can’t trust anyone.
He also went on to describe the time that he was restrained and separated during one of his “episodes.”
“They have this moment where they put you — they handcuff you, they drug you, they put you on the bed, and they separate you from everyone you know,” West said. “That’s something that I am so happy that I experienced myself so I can start by changing that moment.”
He called the situation “cruel and primitive.”
The 41-year-old, who was diagnosed two years ago, says that he has to take medication every day in order to maintain a “certain state,” or he can escalate and end up in the hospital. He also said that he can become more “adolescent” in his behavior when he is experiencing an episode.
Fans have speculated for years about West’s mental health after he was hospitalized in November 2016 for a “psychiatric emergency.” There have also been several instances that have prompted rumors, like his meeting with President Donald Trump where he suggested that Trump get an amped up version of Air Force One, and the time that he called slavery “a choice.”
West is opening up about his struggles, he says, because he wants to help remove the stigma around the disorder. He likened his condition to a sprained ankle and said that people can be discriminatory against individuals with mental health challenges. He said that people can push those with mental health issues, and it only makes the situation worse.
Kim Kardashian, West’s wife, says that the couple has learned how to recognize when an episode is coming and know better how to handle things.