When I woke up on Saturday morning (3 February) excited about seeing Lady Gaga, it was like deja vu.
Last July, I was due to see one of my idols, Adele. I was going to see her perform the final show of her world tour (maybe even final show ever) at Wembley Stadium in London.
I woke up on 1 July, the day of the show, to the news she was unable to perform due to damaged vocal chords.
I was honestly devastated and, frankly, a bit shell shocked. I knew then I would unlikely ever see Adele perform live as she, rightfully, devotes time to her growing family.
What I didn’t do is take to my phone as some kind of keyboard warrior and despicably attack her directly through social media for ‘ruining’ some significant event in ‘my life’.
I accept artists, like us, have the right to good health and quality of life above all costs.
They belong to themselves, not to us.
When Lady Gaga cancelled the remaining European dates of her Joanne tour, I woke up to see a similar headline, through strained eyes, being waved in my face by my partner.
‘Lady Gaga cancels final tour dates due to ‘severe pain’’
In the moments I realised her fibromyalgia, a chronic pain disorder, was the reason, I accepted the cancellation of the plans I had for Sunday evening without question.
This is exactly how we, as fans, respond: A change of plans.
Like with Adele, I looked to social media to see the reactions and I was shocked how ridiculous ‘fans’ were acting.
Some were outraged, spouting hate and abuse like she’d seduced their partners or stolen their car – or something warranted.
It makes you wonder if they love what she represents, rather than the human she is.
I didn’t reply to any of the backlash with Adele, as I was still processing the news myself.
But now I felt I had to fire back when someone, on my personal Facebook, slated Lady Gaga’s cancellation of tour dates.
The Facebook friend, who’s now deleted me, said that it was a ‘bad career move’ that would mean she is ‘over’ as an artist.
Well, this is what I had to say about that:
But, this person wasn’t the only one to attack Gaga – even fans were at it:
Some Lady Gaga fans take her humanity for granted
It’s concerning how someone’s fandom can become an all encompassing obsession, where the reality of the thing that’s ‘adored’ is disregarded as non integral to their meaning.
These are the people who have a skewed perception of reality and don’t see these artists as human beings, they have become these peoples dreams and represent a hole in their lives.
This opens a wider debate on what impacts obsessive fandom can have on the mental health of ‘fans’, but also indicates how much of an onslaught celebrities and artists can get for even the minor decisions if their lives; taking it easy after months of hard work.
Lady Gaga’s fan, on the whole, has been astronomically supportive of her decision and are wishing her the best for the future, where they hope to see her live again.
They’ve even shared ideas about a stripped back tour where Gaga just sits at the piano and performs her songs for two hours; the real fans just want to hear her sing.
To Lady Gaga, from a fan…
You should be proud of the fans you have Gaga.
Proud they have devoted their love to you in a way that’s not just appreciative of you as an artist and a figure of hope, but as an imperfect human – like us all.
I can’t wait to see you perform again, even if it’s re-watching videos on YouTube or stripped back performances on the TV – you have proved you can be anything you want, anywhere.
I already hold memories dear to me inspired by yourself, and that’s enough.