David Letterman brought up the topic after his film captured an involuntary movement during her performance in “My Guest Needs No Introduction.”
Billie Eilish hasn’t been secretive about living with Tourette syndrome, but she hasn’t talked about it much openly either. After an involuntary movement was captured in an interview, Eilish opened up.
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The “No Time to Die” singer was a guest on the final season of David Letterman’s “No Time Left to Die” and during their lengthy conversation noticed a tic. The late night legend asked if it was okay to talk about it.
“If you film me long enough, you’re going to see a lot of tics,” Eilish said, telling him she actually likes to talk about it, even though she usually doesn’t.
“I actually really enjoy answering questions about it because it’s really interesting, and I’m incredibly confused by it,” she admitted. “I do not get it.”
Eilish had previously admitted to tourette during an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, saying she first started developing signs when she was 11 years old. She said most of her tics have subsided, but some linger.
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And the singer isn’t the only one who seems confused by what’s happening. She even said that when a tic manifests, the most common reaction she gets from people is that they start laughing.
“The most common way people react is that they laugh because they think I’m trying to be funny,” she explained. She said they think she’s going this way trying to be funny.
“And so they go, ‘Ha,’ and I’m always incredibly offended by that,” she continued. Or they go ‘What?’ and then I go, ‘I’ve got Tourette’s.'”
Eilish said so many more people have it than many realize, including “a few artists” she knows who have admitted so much to her. “I’m not going to speak them out because they don’t want to talk about it,” she said. “But that was really interesting to me because I thought, ‘Are you doing that? What?'”
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Like Eilish, these performers really don’t talk about it publicly, so if tics do occur, they’re most likely going to be misunderstood as well… and possibly reacted badly.
The singer explained that she never experiences her tics while performing or doing other physical activities, or even when she’s just “thinking and focusing.” It’s when she’s off stage and in her downtime that it will happen.
“These are things you would never notice when you have a conversation with me, but for me they are very exhausting,” she said.
The singer demonstrated some of her main tics for Letterman, telling him she doesn’t even really notice them anymore, even though she’s the one doing them. “I wiggle my ear back and forth and raise my eyebrow and click my jaw and bend this arm here and this arm there,” she explained, demonstrating.
She said that while she can’t go as far as to say she likes this being a part of her, she’s come to accept it, describing it as “befriending it.”
The new season of “My Guest Needs No Introduction” is now on Netflix.