Music

“You Were In So Much Pain”: Billie Eilish’s Parents Considered Therapy Over Bieber Obsession

Billie Eilish still tears up listening to 'As Long As You Love Me'.

Billie Eilish's parents say they considered therapy over her Justin Bieber obsession

By this point, Billie Eilish’s love for Justin Bieber is well-documented — before she was famous, Eilish plastered her bedroom walls with pictures of the pop-star, making it a ‘full circle’ moment when he popped on a remix of ‘Bad Guy’ last year. Now, in a radio chat, Eilish’s parents reveal they considered therapy for their daughter over her obsession.

The comment came as Eilish’s mum, Maggie Beard, made an appearance on the third episode of the Apple Music radio show Eilish co-hosts with her dad, Patrick Beard — suitably titled ‘me & dad radio’.

Over the episode, the trio play music and discuss artists important during Eilish’s childhood, including Chris Cornell, Marina (fka Marina & The Diamonds), Rob Dickinson, M.I.A. and Justin Bieber.

During the segment on Bieber’s 2012 track ‘As Long As You Love Me’, Maggie revealed that Eilish would cry as soon as she played the song, and was exceedingly excited in the lead up to the music video’s release.

“I remember this one really well and the video, and Billie talking about it, and being excited it was coming out, and just crying and crying,” Maggie said (via Billboard). “Everyone knows the whole Billie, Justin Bieber thing but this song was a big part of it.”

Maggie told stories of Eilish playing this song on repeat in car trips and crying instantly. Before they play the song, Maggie says, “I just want to say, we did consider taking you to therapy because you were in so much pain over Justin Bieber.”

While they joke about the idea, Eilish also begins to tear up as the song begins, and Maggie can be heard saying she wishes she could film it. Eilish later cuts the song off halfway through, and laughs off her tears.

The moment leads to a conversation where Eilish and her parents discuss her mental health as a teenager and the role that music took in soothing it. Later speaking about Marina’s music, Eilish says she finds a kinship in the way they write about mental health, arguing that it’s not a glamourisation, but merely a hug to other people going through similar experiences.

“With [my song] ‘listen before i go,’ I was worried that people would hear it and kind of be triggered by it and be offended, but all I’ve seen is fans talking about how much it’s made them feel comforted,” Eilish said. “And hearing someone going through the same thing you’re going through doesn’t make you feel worse about yourself, it makes you feel a little better.”

“There was a period where I cried every single day of my life, when I was like 13, 14, 15,” she says. “Every single day I cried. And 17, 18 I cried barely at all. I’m proud to say I barely cry anymore and its one thing I’ve overcome. This is a big deal. Not that it’s wrong to cry, but it’s a good thing I feel happier in my life and I don’t want to cry anymore.”.

Eilish has long been upfront about her experiences with depression and anxiety as a teen and young adult, both in interviews and her music. Her 2019 debut album When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? was celebrated for its depictions of mental health.

Listen to the interview below.


Billie Eilish at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion. Photo: Mikki Gomez