Artist News

Benga opens up about mental health problems

By | Published on Thursday 17 September 2015


Dubstepper Benga used Twitter yesterday to discuss his retirement last year, telling his followers that diagnoses of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, received after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act, were behind the decision. He also called on others in music affected by mental health to speak more openly.

“Who wants to do my lead interview on my mental health issue? I would like to get this heard now. I’m asked so much about my retirement”, he began, before changing tack. “I might as well explain it on here. My bipolar was brought on by drugs and the schizophrenia was the result of excessive touring”.

“I don’t want sympathy but to raise awareness”, he continued. “Because if I had help early the damage could have been controlled! If you know someone that suffers from mental health issues you’ll understand how alone you feel until it’s recognised. Many people suffer … the stigma around it is what makes you so alone… nobody recognises it”.

On life before he received medical help, he said: “My girl stood by me through all of my most manic behaviour, which I’ll explain at a later date. But for the people around me – ie [Magnetic Man bandmates] Skream and Artwork – they must have been so terrified. Not to mention hurt by my behaviour. I hope I can help change that. And that could be why I’m on this planet. Who knows?”

“Well, that was easier than I thought”, he concluded, adding later: “My story today is for people to accept that people deal with mental issues!”

If you are seeking information or advice on mental health, Mind offers a range of support and assistance. Click here to visit the charity’s website.