On Wednesday afternoon, Kim posted a lengthy statement on her Instagram story, in which she spoke about Kanye’s bipolar disorder, claiming she hoped doing so could challenge the stigma around mental health.
“As many of you know, Kanye has bipolar disorder,” Kim wrote. “Anyone who has this or has a loved one in their life who does, knows how incredibly complicated and painful it is to understand.
“I’ve never spoken publicly about how this has affected us at home because I am very protective of our children and Kanye’s right to privacy when it comes to his health. But today, I feel like I should comment on it because of the stigma and misconceptions about mental health.”
Kim continued: “Those that understand mental illness or even compulsive behaviour know that the family is powerless unless the member is a minor.
“People who are unaware or far removed from the experience can be judgemental and not understand that the individual themselves [has] to engage in the process of getting help no matter how hard family and friends try.
“I understand Kanye is subject to criticism because he is a public figure and his actions at times can cause strong opinions and emotions. He is a brilliant but complicated person who on top of the pressures of being an artist and a Black man, who experienced the painful loss of his mother, and has to deal with the pressure and isolation that is heightened by his bipolar disorder.
“Those who are close with Kanye know his heart and understand his words sometimes do not align with his intentions.”
Kim concluded: “We as a society talk about giving grace to the issue of mental health as a whole, however we should also give it to the individuals who are living with it in times when they need it most.
“I kindly ask that the media and public give us the compassion and empathy that is needed so that we can get through this. Thank you for those who have expressed concern for Kanye’s well-being and for your understanding.”
In recent days, Kanye – who last month made headlines when he reiterated his intent to run for US president in 2020 – has caused concern with a number of tweets, as well as controversial comments he made at a rally of his in Charleston, South Carolina.
The Grammy-winning musician first spoke publicly about his bipolar diagnosis on his album Ye, released in 2018.
Useful websites and helplines
Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393.
Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 (UK and ROI - this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill).