Lady Gaga's mother, Cynthia Germanotta, spoke to the Today Show's web series "Through Mom's Eyes" on Sunday about her famous daughter's early struggles with depression, describing how severe bullying in middle school led to young Stefani Germanotta's battles with mental illness.
“In middle school, because she was unique, she started experiencing a lot of struggles,” said Germanotta, who, along with her daughter, launched the Born This Way Foundation in 2012 to support the mental and emotional wellness of young people. “You know, feeling isolated from events. Humiliated. Taunted. And she would start to question herself and become doubtful of her own abilities. And that’s when she developed depression.”
Germanotta said she and Gaga's father, Joe, tried their best as parents to help, "but [we] didn't know everything." Because she wasn't as well-informed about mental health as she is now, Cynthia Germanotta said she didn't realize the depths of Gaga's childhood depression. “I felt where I made mistakes was I didn’t really know the warning signs to look for,” she said in the interview that took place in the family's New York restaurant, Joanne Trattoria.