Since the beginning of her career in the entertainment industry as a child, Demi Lovato’s image has been shaped by the media, but the singer is now explaining her life on her own terms in her exclusive YouTube documentary.

“Simply Complicated” shows Lovato’s struggle with drug addiction, eating disorders and overall mental health — all the while showcasing her strength and growth throughout the years. The documentary includes everything, from at-home clips of Lovato’s childhood to her working in the studio on her most recent album. Her story is nothing short of inspirational, and even though it’s just more than an hour, creates a sense of relatability with the superstar.

The emotional aspect of the documentary is enhanced with interviews with childhood friends, managers, therapists and everyone else who knows her the best. At times, these anecdotes overpower the current state of the singer’s happy and sober life.

“Demi was on a road to … suicide,” said Mike Bayer, a development coach who worked with Lovato.

Heavy-hitting quotes like this made me realize the intensity of the situation, but at times the film had a severe dark undertone. I admit that that is what makes this documentary so special — it doesn’t hide anything.

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The emotional rollercoaster of a documentary includes a recent at-home interview with Demi, where she talks about her childhood interest with death. This would later be explained by her diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Lovato’s unsteady acclamation to fame led her to begin using cocaine and other drugs, which led her to multiple treatment facilities.

A good half or more of the documentary is centered around Lovato’s struggle with mental illnesses, which made the film emotionally draining for me to watch. This artistic choice of highlighting the dark aspects of the singer’s life was an excellent move by the director, because when light-hearted scenes came around, I felt more involved than I would have otherwise. The truth and honesty makes the film seem real.

The film also gives insights into Lovato’s creative choices as a recording artist. Her estranged father inspired the song “Daddy Issues,” and her hate of players inspired “Games” — both of which are seen recorded live in studio. This was an interesting aspect of the film because no one really knows the exact details of what happens in the studio, but Demi showed the world.

In the studio, Lovato shows her perfectionist qualities. She sings lyrics over and over again until she gets it just right — sometimes she’s looking to improve just one word.

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The perfectionism shows Lovato’s dedication to her craft, but singing isn’t the only thing she’s committed to. She’s seen working out intensely in a gym — something she says changed her life. In recent years, Lovato would hate to even hear the words “work out,” but her growth as a person allows her to tackle her demons.

“Simply Complicated” is an inspiration to everyone to fight their inner demons. By being honest, Lovato created a short, but moving piece about not only her life, but the issues of mental illness and drug addiction at large. I never paid much attention to her, but this documentary makes me look at her with a new perspective.