Ryan Reynolds says he’s been to the depths of darkness amid anxiety battle
Ryan Reynolds may be a superhero on screen — but out of the spotlight, he's plagued with crippling anxiety.
The movie star revealed in an interview with the New York Times on Wednesday that he's struggled with anxiety for most of his life and faced a "real unhinged phase" in his 20s.
"I have anxiety, I've always had anxiety," said Reynolds, 41. "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."
As for the "unhinged phase" of his 20s, he shared that he got heavy into self-medicating, but got it together after a few of his friends died of overdoses.
He added that it was during those days that he also woke up in the middle of the night because of the crippling weight of anxiety.
"I was partying and just trying to make myself vanish in some way," he said.
Just before the interview, Reynolds said he hadn't eaten because he's still nervous to do press.
Reynolds is now a household name, starring in "Green Lantern," "The Proposal," and "Mississippi Grind" — but his most critically acclaimed hit is by far "Deadpool." The sequel of the popular Marvel anti-hero flick hits theaters May 18.
He told The Times he's been doing the interviews as his character Deadpool to ease the anxiety — and he also uses the meditation app, Headspace.
Reynolds is also popular for his hilarious social media presence and his back and forth jokes with wife, actress Blake Lively, with whom he shares two children, Ines, 1, and James, 3.
The actor credited his loving wife for helping him get through the struggle in an interview with Variety in January.
"Blake helped me through it," Reynolds said. "I'm lucky to have her around just to keep me sane."
In the same interview, he spoke about his childhood and how tough his father was, revealing that his anxiety might have started then.
"I think the anxiety might have started there," he said. "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."