Emma Stone's Childhood Illustration Has a Message About Anxiety We All Need to Hear

Emma Stone talked about her childhood anxiety Tuesday night on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” and shared a message that might resonate if you grew up with anxiety. Colbert presented a picture 9-year-old Stone drew depicting herself towering over a green “anxiety” monster.

Stone experienced panic attacks as a child and started going to therapy at the age of 7. While in therapy, she drew the picture of herself next to a monster that represented anxiety which reads, “I’m bigger than my anxiety.”

Stephen Colbert holds Emma Stone's drawing of anxiety monster

“I was a very, very, very anxious child,” she told Colbert. “I benefitted in a big way from therapy.”

Stone said she no longer has panic attacks but still lives with anxiety. In May, Emma teamed up with the Child Mind Institute, a nonprofit that works to help children with mental health issues, sharing a video about living with anxiety and what she would tell her younger self.

According to the Child Mind Institute, anxiety disorders are the most common psychiatric disorder in children, and the average age of onset is 6 years old.

About 1 in 4 adolescents will have an anxiety disorder, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. While symptoms can change, anxiety disorders in children tend to last into adulthood — and Emma’s childhood illustration is a great reminder that we don’t have to let it control our lives.

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