Billie Eilish Says Having Tourette’s Syndrome can be ‘Very Exhausting’

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Photo: BBC

Living with Tourette’s Syndrome (TS) can be “very exhausting,” according to Billie Eilish. When talking during David Letterman’s My Next Guest show on Netflix, she experienced an on-camera tic. 

“If you film me for long enough, you’re going to see lots of tics,” she stated. 

Children and adults with Tourette’s Syndrome (TS) in the UK are more likely to have had their condition since childhood. A report from last year says that 300,000 people suffer from this disorder in the UK, which causes tics – or sudden, repetitive movements of facial muscles as well as sound emitters like barking or squeaking noises when they don’t want it to. 

However, these symptoms can improve over time and sometimes even possibly disappear. 

Billie says that while she doesn’t have any tics during performances, some particular ones happen frequently.

“These are things you would never notice if you’re just having a conversation with me,” she states, further saying, “but for me, they’re very exhausting.” 

Billie stated that she “really loves” conversations about her encounters with TS but said she is “incredibly confused by it.” However, the singer also acknowledges that people often react positively when she undergoes a tic. 

“The most common way that people react is they laugh because they think I’m trying to be funny. I’m always left incredibly offended by that,” she stated. 

Meanwhile, when Terrina Bibb was just 21, she began experiencing signs of tics. She visited several neurologists before being diagnosed with the condition at 24 – this is actually later than usual. 

She recounts that the previous year, someone stared at her nonstop in a restaurant during a “really bad tic attack.” 

“It’s just rude, and it frustrates me. People ask, ‘why do you have to swear so much?’ I wish I didn’t have to, but it’s something I can’t control,” she states. 

Bibb hopes for people to treat her, as well as others living with TS, ordinarily, further saying that she doesn’t “mind educating people on it, but I just don’t think people should be rude.”