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Ryan Reynolds Daughters Inspired Him to Speak Openly About Mental Health

Ryan Reynolds recently opened up online about his battles with anxiety. Furthermore, presently, he’s clarifying exactly how his three little girls urged him to freely post his message.

Ryan Reynolds said mental health ‘is important to talk about’ while talking about his own battles with feeling ‘alone’ and ‘at absolute bottom’, in an interview.

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“I have three daughters at home and part of my job as a parent is to model behaviors and model what it’s like to be sad and model what it’s like to be anxious or angry,” the Dead Pool star, 44, told Entertainment Tonight on Saturday. “That there’s space for all these things.”

Ryan Reynolds Daughters Inspired Him to Speak Openly About Mental Health
Credit: Getty Images

The star has three daughters James-6, Inez-4, and Betty-1, with spouse Blake Lively. The pair wedded in 2012 following a time of dating.

“That there’s space for all these things,” he added. “The home that I grew in, that wasn’t modeled for me really. And that’s not to say that my parents were neglectful, but they come from a different generation.”

“Part of that is to de-stigmatize things and create a conversation around [mental health],” he continued. “I know that when I felt at the absolute bottom it’s usually been because I felt like I was alone in something I was feeling. So I think when people talk about it, I don’t necessarily dwell on it or lament on it, but I think it’s important to talk about it. And when you talk about it, it kind of sets other people free.”

He likewise said that if he stands up, he trusts it helps other people battling with their mental health too.

“Other people feel like, ‘Oh, he’s feeling that and so am I.’ And even though we might be in two completely different fields or we might have two completely different lives, it connects us in a way,” he explained. “A lot of it is just wanting to model certain things for my own kids and model things for anyone who might need to hear it.”

“May is almost over. It’s also Mental Health Awareness month. Which brings me to this.” “One of the reasons I’m posting this so late is I overschedule myself and important things slip. And one of the reasons I overschedule myself is my lifelong pal, anxiety.”

He further continued, “I know I’m not alone and more importantly, to all those like me who overschedule, overthink, overwork, over-worry and over-everything, please know you’re not alone. We don’t talk enough about mental health and don’t do enough to destigmatize talking about it. But, as with this post, better later than never, I hope…”

“I have three older brothers. Our father was tough. He wasn’t easy on anyone. And he wasn’t easy on himself,” Ryan told. “I think the anxiety might have started there, trying to find ways to control others by trying to control myself. At the time, I never recognized that I was just a twitchy kid.”

Ryan’s co-star, Salma Hayek, 54, who was additionally present for the interview, added her own thoughts about anxiety. “A lot of the really, extremely smart people suffer from anxiety,” she said. “If you’re very young or have not achieved a certain amount of success, it might make you feel like there is something wrong with you and it’s not. It’s part of having an intellect that’s very easily stimulated and it’s just about channeling that.”

“It’s hard to sometimes turn one’s brain off and that’s a challenge for some people,” Ryan tolled in.

“I have anxiety. I’ve always had anxiety. Both in the lighthearted ‘I’m anxious about this’ kind of thing, and I’ve been to the depths of the darker end of the spectrum, which is not fun,” he shared.

He explained that his comic book character allowed him to really disappear into his role, noting, “When the curtain opens, I turn on this knucklehead, and he kind of takes over and goes away again once I walk off set.”

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