Emma Stone is a 35-year-old actress who grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona and has gone on to become one of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood.
She previously won an Academy Award, British Film Academy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards, accolades befitting of a self-assured person that belie her challenging childhood bouts with crippling social anxiety.
In a story published recently, Stone spoke out about her childhood struggles, which seem to mirror some of her roles in Hollywood as a shy and awkward girl with a big personality and a can-do attitude.
Stone told Self Magazine that she had her first panic attack at the age of seven years old, which she described at great length on the magazine’s website.
“It was really, really terrifying and overwhelming,” she said.
“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.”
School was a big problem for Stone as she was forced to spend time with the school nurse and had a difficult time being away from her mother, Krista Stone.
“I could attend school, but I went to the nurse every single day at lunch. I would say that I was sick and I needed to go home and I needed to call my mom,” she explained. “I couldn’t go to friends’ houses. I had deep separation anxiety with my mom.”
Emma Stone’s Pursuit of Therapy and Healing Journey
Stone told NPR that she began going to therapy around age eight and said it was “really hard for her” to leave the house, a struggle that is all too familiar in millions of school children that usually goes undiagnosed.
She said she started in therapy around age eight.
“It was getting really hard for me to leave the house to go to school,” Stone said to the famous radio network.
“I sort of lived in fear of these panic attacks.”
‘Creative Superpower:’ Emma Stone Gets Real on Lifelong Anxiety Struggles
Stone makes a point of telling younger people that her struggle with anxiety is part of what makes her unique, and fuels her life and career in myriad ways.
“I’ve told a lot of younger people that struggle with anxiety, that in many ways I see it as a kind of superpower,” she said.
“Just because we might have a funny thing going on in our amygdala, and our fight-or-flight response is maybe a little bit out of whack in comparison to many people’s brain chemistry, doesn’t make it wrong; it doesn’t make it bad.
Stone stars in the direct-to-theaters film ‘Poor Things’ during which she plays a woman whose ‘body and brain are not synchronized.’
She dies and is brought back to life by a mysterious scientist, after which she continues her search for freedom in a whole new way.
The movie was released on December 8, 2023.
“It just means we have these tools to manage. And if you can use it for productive things, if you can use all of those feelings in those synapses that are firing for something creative, or something that you’re passionate about, or something interesting, anxiety is like rocket fuel…
“You can’t help but get out of bed and do things, do things, do things because you’ve got all this energy within you. And that’s really a gift,” the actress said. .