Solange Puts Health First, Cancels NYE Appearance to Deal with Autonomic Nerve Disorder

"As a part of the self-care that I’ve tried to encourage this past year, it needs to start with myself."

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Solange thanked festivals for keeping her autonomic disorder a secret. (Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP, File)

Solange has revealed she won’t be performing at Afropunk after quietly battling an autonomic nerve disorder. The “Don’t Touch My Hair” singer revealed the news on Instagram Wednesday, Dec. 27 and although she was upset that she couldn’t perform at the pro-Black festival in South Africa on New Year’s Eve, she declared she needed to put her health first.

“[It’s] been a journey that hasn’t been easy on me,” she wrote. “Sometimes I feel cool, and other times not so cool at all. It’s a complicated diagnosis, and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight and doing a rigorous show right after.”

“As a part of the self-care that I’ve tried to encourage this past year, it needs to start with myself, and I’m looking forward to doing a better job of this 2018,” she added.”

Wrote, deleted and re wrote this like 5 times… Still not sure what exactly or how much I want to share… However it’s so important to me for the people in South Africa, a place that has tremendous meaning to me and that has given me SO SO MUCH, to know why I won’t be performing at Afro Punk this NYE. The past five months I have been quietly treating, and working through an Autonomic Disorder. It been a journey that hasn’t been easy on me… Sometimes I feel cool, and other times not so cool at all. It’s a complicated diagnoses , and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight, and doing a rigorous show right after. I can’t put into words how saddened and sorry I am that I am unable to perform for you guys this NYE, there is simply no other place I wanted to be than there with my family to bring in 2018 with you…….but I give you my ABSOLUTE WORD I will come back with AfroPunk and deliver this performance…..as it is so extremely important to me to connect with the people who have so closely inspired me in so many ways. I can’t thank Afro Punk enough for their support, and to all of the other festivals this past summer/fall who have known about my health, kept it confidential, and gone out of their way to make me feel supported while doing these shows. As a part of the self care that I’ve tried to encourage this past year, it needs to start with myself, and I’m looking forward to doing a better job of this 2018. This past year has been one of the most fulfilling of my life… Performing this record and experiencing the energy exchange with you guys has been astounding, and I’m so excited about continuing to do the work I feel so absolutely humbled and appreciative to be doing next year. It gives me life.

A post shared by Solange (@saintrecords) on

Solange’s transparency was welcomed by fans.

autonomic disorder autonomic disorder autonomic disorder autonomic disorder autonomic disorder

But her disclosure also begs the question: what exactly is an autonomic nerve disorder?


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There are different kinds of autonomic disorders, also known as dysautonomia, and Solange has not disclosed which kind she is treating. But they all have to do with parts of the nervous system that you don’t have to think about for them to work, including heart rate, perspiration, breathing, and body temperature, according to Mayo Clinic.

Symptoms can range from fatigue and lightheadedness to issues with sweating and bowel function, according to Black Doctor. The disorder can be brought on by other diseases — like diabetes — and treatment typically includes prescribed medication to regulate blood pressure and increase salt and water retention in the body.

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