Emma Stone opens up about lifelong struggle with anxiety
'I still have anxiety to this day,' she said
Emma Stone continues to discuss her history of anxiety and panic attacks post-Oscar win. “I was a very, very, very anxious child and I had a lot of panic attacks,” the Battle of the Sexes star told Stephen Colbert on The Late Show Tuesday night. “I benefitted in a big way from therapy.”
Colbert showed the audience a picture drawn by Stone during therapy when she was 9 years old (the actress started going to therapy at the age of 7). “This is me, I guess. It’s really great artistry with my shoes and then this is anxiety here,” she said of her drawing. “It’s a little green monster that looks a little bit, as someone backstage said, a uterus with some ovaries. But I didn’t mean for it to be hormonally related in any way. Like I said, I was 9.”
Stone teamed up with the non-profit organization Child Mind Institute for a video campaign earlier this year. She recalled thinking she’d never move away from home, but has since developed tools to combat those feelings.
“It has always been something that I’ve lived with and it flares up in big ways at different times in my life,” Stone said. “Sometimes while it’s happening, like while I’m in a phase of big turmoil, it feels like it’s never gonna end — but it does.”
In a 2012 interview with Vogue, the La La Land actress said she would be “immobilized” by anxiety. “I didn’t want to go to my friends’ houses or hang out with anybody, and nobody really understood.” What helped her — and what she repeated on The Late Show Tuesday — was performance.
“[Acting] helped me so much, improv helped me so much,” she told Colbert. “I mean, I still have anxiety to this day, not panic attacks — knock on wood.”
Watch Stone’s interview in the clip above.