Bethany Mota Opens Up About Depression + Being Cyber Bullied
Considering her massive success at such a young age (which, by the way, includes interviewing President Obama), Bethany Mota puts your typical 19-year-old to shame. But just a few years before her YouTube channel really took off, she was cyber bullied by a group of her supposed friends. Things got so bad that she suffered intensely from daily bouts of panic attacks, severe anxiety and depression.
In a recent cover story for Latina magazine, Bethany opened up about what she went through during her early teen years, starting just before she turned 13. She says her then-best friends created a fake MySpace page for Bethany behind her back, where they would post photos of her criticizing her weight and looks.
At the time, Bethany was already being homeschooled, but the effects of bullying pushed her further away from socializing, making her anxious to be around nearly everyone, including her own family members. She admits, “I felt hopeless. I had really bad anxiety. I would have panic attacks every time I was around a lot of people. I didn’t even want to hang out with my family members.”
Bethany's sister, Brittany, says her family noticed Bethany's isolation. Brittany said, "Everyone knew her as the girl who never talked. She was very shut off from the world."
Eventually, Bethany reached a breaking point where she knew she had to try and help herself. She said, "It got to the point that I didn’t think I could ever shake this. I thought, ‘My God, this is going to be my life forever.’ I was scared to express my opinion or talk because I was afraid of judgment. I thought, ‘I’m always going to be too scared to live life.’ That’s when I knew I had to do something, and I started doing the videos.”
You can check out Bethany's full cover story when the September 2015 issue of Latina magazine hits newsstands on August 11.