Billie Eilish is opening up about what it’s like to live with Tourette’s syndrome.
While speaking with David Letterman on Netflix’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, the singer, who was diagnosed when she was 11 years old, talked about the neurological disorder after having a tic. Tourette’s syndrome is a condition of the nervous system that causes people to experience tics, or sudden movements or sounds that are done repeatedly.
“I’m very happy to talk about it,” Eilish told Letterman, per People. “I actually really love answering questions about it because it’s very, very interesting, and I am incredibly confused by it and I don’t get it.”
She added, “I never don’t tic at all, because the main tics that I do constantly, all day long, are like, I wiggle my ear back and forth and raise my eyebrow and click my jaw … and flex my arm here and flex this arm, flex these muscles. These are things you would never notice if you’re just having a conversation with me, but for me, they’re very exhausting.”
When she’s “focusing” on other tasks, like singing or riding horses, Eilish says she doesn’t experience tics as often.
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“It’s really weird, I haven’t talked about it at all. The most common way that people react is they laugh because they think I’m trying to be funny,” she continued. “They think I’m [ticcing] as a funny move. And so they go, ‘Ha.’ And I’m always left incredibly offended by that. Or they go ‘What?’ And then I go, ‘I have Tourette’s.'”
Eilish shared that some fellow artists have told her about their own diagnoses after she revealed in 2018 that she has the disorder. “So many people have it that you would never know. A couple artists came forward and said, ‘I’ve actually always had Tourette’s,'” she said. “And I’m not going to out them because they don’t want to talk about it. But that was actually really interesting to me because I was like, ‘You do? What?'”
Since being diagnosed as a child, the singer has come to terms with it. “It’s not like I like it, but I feel like it’s … part of me,” she said. “I have made friends with it. And so now, I’m pretty confident in it.”
This article originally appeared in Harper’s BAZAAR US