Oct. 2 (UPI) — Emma Stone is opening up about her lifelong struggle with anxiety.
The 29-year-old actress shared details about her experience in an interview Monday with Dr. Harold S. Koplewicz for the Child Mind Institute.
“After first grade, before I went into second grade, I had my first panic attack. It was really, really terrifying and overwhelming,” Stone recalled.
“I was at a friend’s house, and all of a sudden I was convinced the house was on fire and it was burning down. I was just sitting in her bedroom and obviously the house wasn’t on fire, but there was nothing in me that didn’t think we were going to die,” she said.
The “La La Land” star had frequent panic attacks for the next two years before seeing a therapist. The therapist diagnosed her with generalized anxiety and panic disorder but only shared her diagnosis with her mom.
“I am very grateful I didn’t know that I had a disorder,” Stone said. “I wanted to be an actor and there weren’t a lot of actors who spoke about having panic attacks.”
Stone previously discussed her anxiety in an interview with Rolling Stone in December 2016. She said she wrote the book “I Am More than My Anxiety” as a child, which helped her cope with the disorder.
“I drew a little green monster on my shoulder that speaks to me in my ear and tells me all these things that aren’t true. And every time I listen to it, it grows bigger. If I listen to it enough, it crushes me,” the star shared.
“But if I turn my head and keep doing what I’m doing — let it speak to me, but don’t give it the credit it deserves — then it shrinks down and fades away,” she said.
Stone most recently starred in the Netflix series “Maniac.” She will reprise Wichita in the movie “Zombieland 2,” and will also star as Cruella de Vil in the upcoming Disney film “Cruella.”