Just one year ago, Ariana Grande was falling in love with comedian Pete Davidson. A few months later, she’d be mourning the loss of her former boyfriend, rapper Mac Miller, and dealing with PTSD from a terror attack at her 2017 Manchester concert that killed 22 people and injured hundreds.
Of the time following the attack and Miller’s death, Grande told Vogue in a cover interview: “I was researching healing and PTSD and talking to therapists, and everyone was like, ‘You need a routine, a schedule,’ … Of course because I’m an extremist, I’m like, OK, I’ll go on tour! But it’s hard to sing songs that are about wounds that are so fresh. It’s fun, it’s pop music, and I’m not trying to make it sound like anything that it’s not, but these songs to me really do represent some heavy s**t.”
Grande shed tears during the interview when she spoke of missing Miller and explained how her performances at Coachella in April helped remind her of him, in a good way. (Miller died of an accidental overdose in September 2018.)
“I was always a person who never went to festivals and never went out and had fun like that. But the first time I went was to see Malcolm perform, and it was such an incredible experience,” Grande explained. “I went the second year as well, and I associate, heavily … it was just kind of a mindf**k, processing how much has happened in such a brief period.”
She says in November 2018, after Miller’s death and her breakup with Davidson, she realized she needed help.
“I’m a person who’s been through a lot and doesn’t know what to say about any of it to myself, let alone the world. I see myself onstage as this perfectly polished, great-at-my-job entertainer, and then in situations like this I’m just this little basket-case puddle of figuring it out,” she said.