mary-j-bligeIt’s easy for regular people to think that stars—whether in music, film or TV—have such cushy lives so full of success, glamor and luxury that nothing ever bothers them.

But if the recent suicide of Robin Williams and the overdose death of Amy Winehouse before that taught us anything, it’s that stars are people too. And they can suffer setbacks, depression and addictions, and sometimes these problems are amplified because they are stars.

Mary J. Blige is a case in point. She’s one of the favorite musical artists of President and Michelle Obama and has been to the White House twice. But at this stage in her career, her recordings no longer reliably sell in the millions. She leaned hard on her loyal fan base to have a successful Christmas album last year. But her newest work “sounds like nothing she has ever done before,” reports Billboard magazine.

“The empathetic quality she displays in person is all over her latest record, The London Sessions. Helping her fans feel better about themselves is a major goal of Blige’s. But it turns out that she herself actually hasn’t seen a therapist, despite a traumatic childhood, the struggles with addiction and bouts of depression,” according to the Billboard piece written by Jonathan Ringen. More