Pop star Lorde compared her friend Taylor Swift‘s fame to an autoimmune disease in an interview with The Guardian over the weekend, and in doing so, ended up potentially offending another one of her friends, Selena Gomez, as well as plenty of others who suffer from illnesses such as lupus, type 1 diabetes, IBM, psoriasis and more.
“It’s like having a friend with very specific allergies,” she said in the interview. “There are certain places you can’t go together. Certain things you can’t do. There are these different sets of considerations within the friendship. It’s like having a friend with an autoimmune disease.”
The issue isn’t that Lorde was talking trash about her pal Swift. She was merely explaining how Swift is so famous and recognizable that she can’t go certain places or she’d be swarmed by fans. Besides, there’s a level of trust and understanding that comes with close friendship that permits you to speak frankly about your besties.
The problem with her comment wasn’t about Taylor at all. It’s in the insensitivity toward people with autoimmune diseases, including her other friend Selena Gomez. Gomez has lupus, and had to take time off to focus on her health just last year, following episodes of depression and anxiety related to her diagnosis.
It wasn’t long before fans were taking to Twitter to point out the gauche comment and how it affected people in Lorde’s own personal circle.
— Stephanie Marie (@stefinitely85) June 19, 2017
To her credit, Lorde responded directly to this tweet, owning her mistake and making the appropriate apology.
didn’t mention taylor, but regardless, i fucked up & that was really insensitive. i’m sorry 🌹
— Lorde (@lorde) June 20, 2017
Which garnered another response from the user.
<3 love you for owning this, queen of apologies! x https://t.co/BFY5iGS5iN
— Stephanie Marie (@stefinitely85) June 20, 2017
Ultimately, it’s a good lesson in thinking before your speak — which, in Lorde’s defense, is easier said than done when you’re being interviewed for a story in an international publication — and also owning your mistakes, even the accidents. Lord knows the world could use more of these kinds of interactions — and now so does Lorde.
thank you from a disabled fan w an autoimmune disease ❤️ hope you learn more about ableism and grow from this ♿️💪🏼
— 💚 s 💚 (@melodramamp3) June 20, 2017