- Shailene Woodley spoke about the "debilitating" health condition she's been dealing with for years, in a new cover interview with the Hollywood Reporter.
- Woodley said the illness made her feel "isolated and alone," and forced her to turn down work.
- "Unless someone can see that you have a broken arm or a broken leg, it’s really difficult for people to relate to the pain that you’re experiencing when it’s a silent, quiet and invisible pain," she said.
In her cover interview with the Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab), Shailene Woodley spoke candidly about the "pretty debilitating" health condition she's been privately dealing with for years, reflecting on feeling "isolated and alone" and being forced to turn down work as a result of the illness.
"I said no to a lot of projects, not because I wanted to but because I physically couldn’t participate in them. And I definitely suffered a lot more than I had to because I didn’t take care of myself," Woodley said. "The self-inflicted pressure of not wanting to be helped or taken care of created more physical unrest throughout those years."
Happily, Woodley's health is improving: "I’m on the tail end of [the illness], which is very exciting, but it’s an interesting thing, going through something so physically dominating while also having so many people pay attention to the choices you make, the things you say, what you do, what you look like," she said.
"It spun me out for a while. You feel so incredibly isolated and alone. Unless someone can see that you have a broken arm or a broken leg, it’s really difficult for people to relate to the pain that you’re experiencing when it’s a silent, quiet and invisible pain."
Woodley also shared a lesson she learned while sick: "It made me learn the incredibly difficult life task of not caring what people think about you very quickly," she said. "The more I paid attention to the noise that was surrounding me, the longer it was taking my body and my mind to heal because I wasn’t focused on myself, I was focused on an image of myself via the lens of everyone around us."
Emily Dixon is a British journalist who’s contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, Time, Glamour, The Guardian, Wonderland, The Big Roundtable, Bust, and more, on everything from mental health to fashion to political activism to feminist zine collectives. She’s also a committed Beyoncé, Kacey Musgraves, and Tracee Ellis Ross fan, an enthusiastic but terrible ballet dancer, and a proud Geordie lass.
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