Kelly Clarkson is opening up about her struggles with self-image.
The pop star, 35, revealed she contemplated suicide during one of the darkest periods in her career during an interview with Attitude magazine.
“When I was really skinny, I wanted to kill myself,” she said. “I was miserable, like, inside and out, for four years of my life. But, no one cared, because aesthetically you make sense.”
Clarkson, who has been outspoken about accepting body types, said she pushed her body to extremes, working out constantly.
“It was a very dark time for me,” she said. “I thought the only way out was quitting. I, like, wrecked my knees and my feet because all I would do it put in headphones and run. I was at the gym all the time.”
The “Stronger” singer said she began to change her habits and mentality during the release of her 2007 album My December.
“There’s a song on My December called ‘Sober,’” Clarkson said. “There’s this line, ‘picked the weeds but kept the flowers’ and I just live my life by that because you are who you surround yourself with.”
“I was around some really negative people, and I got out of it because I had a lot of great people there, too,” she recalled. “It was a case of turning around, facing them and walking toward the light.”
Clarkson is now married to Brandon Blackstock, and shares two children with him: 3-year-old daughter River Rose, and 1-year-old son Remington Alexander. She is also step-mother to Blackstock’s older children, son Seth and daughter Savannah.
The star recently told PEOPLE at Variety’s Power of Women event in early October that it’s crucial to have in-depth conversations about self-esteem and confidence with her older children.
“I said, ‘You tell mommy if somebody does anything inappropriate.’ You stand up for yourself,” the singer said.
She continued, “Even from a young age, I think you should instill that people, your children, should always stand up for themselves or speak out when something is wrong.”
“I think if we start it at that young age, and you start molding people and growing to these very elevated individuals that help elevate society,” she added. “It’s a really crucial time when you have children right now.”