Owning up to her mistakes. Halsey took a chance and shared a vulnerable health-related photograph with her fans on social media and promptly found herself facing criticism for potentially triggering others.
The “Bad At Love” singer decided to participate in a viral Instagram trend, requesting that her followers ask her to share a photo of whatever they’d like to see. One fan asked that the 26-year-old post a shot of “you at your lowest point.”
Halsey obliged, posting a now-deleted topless photo of herself to her Instagram Stories, in which she appeared shockingly thin.
“TW: ED, ask for help,” she captioned the photo. (“TW” stands for “trigger warning” and “ED” for “eating disorder.)
The photo sparked critical chatter on social media, with many upset that the singer did not give sufficient warning to those who might be harmfully impacted or use her body as fuel for disordered eating after seeing her photo.
“It was, all things considered, DEEPLY irresponsible for a celebrity with her platform to post a bodycheck without a sufficient trigger warning,” tweeted one fan, who noted that eating disorder culture is competitive and such photos can be dangerous viewed in that context.
Still others countered that Halsey’s eating disorder is her own experience to document or share, and she isn’t responsible for others’ triggers.
Halsey herself apparently took the criticism seriously. She followed up with a tweet apologizing for the photo, prefacing it with a “TW” again.
“I am very sorry for posting a photo of myself depicting my struggle with ED without a sufficient trigger warning,” she explained. “I was very nervous to post it and didn’t think properly. I had positive intentions. I would never want to harm someone who shares my struggle.”
She added in a second tweet: “With that being said im gonna log off now because this has turned into something I am not emotionally equipped to handle for the time being. I hope that’s OK.”
Fans responded with overwhelmingly encouraging messages, with many tweeting, “We love you” to the pop singer.
One fan made her thoughts very clear: “You shared such a vulnerable moment with us and now they are weaponizing it against you,” she wrote on Twitter. “SMH, this is why it’s so rare to find authentic artists willing to be real with their fans because the public takes their vulnerable and rare moments of opening up and crushes it to pieces.”