YG Entertainment’s group BIGBANG has been making waves in K-Pop since their debut in 2006. They’ve been a constant influence to idols and fans worldwide with their music and attitude towards life throughout the years.
Yet, with their fame skyrocketing and being in an industry that expects perfection, the members have opened up about the hardships of being an idol.
One person who has been vocal about these hardships recently is member T.O.P. The idol disappeared from the public eye five years ago. After the announcement that BIGBANG would be making their comeback this year, the idol has been more public about his life in K-Pop, including the dark sides.
T.O.P recently sat down in an interview with Prestige Online, and the idol discussed his past, present, and future in the K-Pop industry along with some of the harsh realities of being an idol.
During the interview, T.O.P was extremely honest with fans about everything in his life, including his mental health. He explained that since he was young, he has suffered from depression, but art has given him a form of escapism.
Since I was young I’ve suffered from depression, but by looking at beautiful things, especially art, I feel relaxed, I feel relieved. I was born to be sad. I’ve felt extra sensitive compared to other kids since I was young. I knew it and felt it, and spent more time and more effort to get over it by spending time with art.
He also spoke about a very dark period of his life that almost changed his life forever. Back in 2017, T.O.P was officially charged with the illegal use of marijuana in a country that is still very strict about drugs and their use.
At the time, it was one of the biggest news stories in Korea, and T.O.P described it as “The worst moment” of his life. Yet, the aftermath of that scandal impacted T.O.P the most, and he revealed the extent to which it affected his mental health and even led to his attempts at dying with suicide.
This is the first time I’ve spoken this publicly, but I did try to die with suicide about five years ago. I realized later how much hurt and painful memories I gave to the people around me, my family, and fans out there.
It was an event that impacted T.O.P for many years and also made him think about giving up music. Those years away from the limelight and his love for music helped him find inspiration again. He found his desire to give back to those who have supported him.
Actually, I was going to seriously stop making music and stop being a musician. But during the bad times, the rough times, my motivation to keep going was the music.
With his time away, he used it to rekindle his love for the industry and found that it completely changed who he was as a person. For him, he believed that a weight had been lifted.
I wrote more than 100 songs over the past five years. It’s been my motivation, like wanting to fill up a bookshelf with my work. It’s been my passion. I realized how precious it is to pay back what I’ve received. I feel that I’m reborn.
T.O.P also discussed how in Korea, the suicide rates in the country were the highest in the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Still, despite this, it is still a taboo topic within the traditional society.
However, with idols like T.O.P and others speaking up about the seriousness of mental health, it seems to be a topic that is starting to be addressed more, especially in the world of K-Pop.