Sheryl Crow "lost faith in humankind" after her cancer diagnoses, as people wanted pictures of her in her "lowest moment".
The 55-year-old singer was diagnosed with a form of breast cancer in 2006, and has now said the experience - which came at the same time as her split with cyclist Lance Armstrong - was made "really hard" by the fact she "could't move" without people wanting to get a snap of the star.
She said: "About 11 years ago I had a really big, public breakup and a breast cancer diagnosis all in the same week and that was really hard.
"I went from being, you know, a well-known person to becoming an A-lister. Paparazzi hanging outside my door, I couldn't move without people wanting to get a picture of what I looked like in my lowest moments and it really started to affect me.
"It made me lose faith in humankind that anybody would want to see a picture of someone at their lowest."
To get away from prying eyes, the 'If It Makes You Happy' hitmaker moved to Nashville, Tennessee, which she believes was a "good decision".
She added: "It was really a great thing, and a good decision, but that was a hard moment.
"The thing that got me through it was actually just learning how to be in it, to experience it and not distract myself by being busy which is what we do. I didn't make a record, I didn't go to recording, I didn't sit down and write songs, I just thought, 'You know what? I'm just going to be in it until I'm not in it anymore.' And then one day I woke up and it was over."
Since her diagnoses, Sheryl has adopted two sons, 10-year-old Wyatt and seven-year-old Levi, and says her children provide a "strong weed-out process" when it comes to finding a romantic partner.
She told 'Entertainment Tonight': "I'm attracted to people that are funny and people that are curious and people that are constantly [growing]. Having two kids, it creates a strong weed-out process. You know pretty quickly if this is somebody that you're going to want to be around your kids."