Toni Braxton Reveals She Was Told To Hide Her Lupus To Save Career

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Singer Toni Braxton says she was warned to hide her lupus because "people get scared around sick celebrities."

During an appearance on the "SHE MD" podcast, Braxton, who went public with her lupus diagnosis in 2010, opened up about initially hiding her autoimmune disease amid her blossoming music career.

“I worked hard to hide it for the longest time,” Braxton said. “I was ashamed. Especially being a performer. So I would make light of it.”

Braxton revealed that her management told her to hide her lupus to save her career.

“People get scared around sick celebrities,” Braxton explained. “And I couldn’t get insured. … You would not get work, because the second I [was] told I had it, I didn’t get work at first.”

“No one wanted to put me on a stage, she added. ‘Well, suppose she collapsed on stage, and the insurance, how are we going to do that?’ And so I couldn’t, at first I did not [work]."

The artist said she went roughly 10 years without receiving an official diagnosis for her lupus, an autoimmune disease that occurs when your body's immune system attacks your own tissues and organs. Braxton experienced various symptoms following the birth of her sons Denim, 22, and Diezel, 21.

“No one could figure it out,” Braxton said.

“Like I’m just telling people, ‘I don’t feel well,’ and no one’s listening,” she continued. “And it doesn’t have a look. Lupus doesn’t have a look to it — not to say that other things do, but we always try to fake that we’re feeling great or we don’t want to worry anyone. As mothers and women, we tend to do that anyway.”

“We never talk about mental health. It definitely affected it. I had chronic anxiety. … It got worse,” the singer added.

Braxton said she now knows that “there’s nothing to be ashamed of, nothing.”

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