“My Sister Has Made Being Depressed Normal” – Alia Bhatt On How She Dealt With Her Anxiety

Alia Bhatt is one of the biggest superstars from the younger lot. Her onscreen presence, confidence, and maturity in portraying her roles make her seem older than her years. She’s currently gearing up for her upcoming release Kalank along with Varun Dhawan, Sonakshi Sinha, Aditya Roy Kapur, Madhuri Dixit, and Sanjay Dutt. The actress talked to us about how her character Roop was challenging and she had prepped quite a lot for it. She has been receiving a lot of positive response for her graceful kathak moves in Ghar More Pardesiya. But according to Alia, she worked extremely hard on this song and was super tensed about the final product.

She said,

I did a lot of prep for Ghar More Pardesiya. I did kathak for a year and the same choreography for 2 months, every day I was doing the same thing and I grew one white hair because I was so tensed about it. I did a lot, but at the end of the day I realised my face was mine and I can’t copy anybody. I have to generate that expression from within.Then I went to Biju Maharaj. He’s the one who helped me perform.

While Alia seems cool as a cucumber in interviews and in whatever character she plays, she had recently opened up about how she used to have bouts of anxiety.

Talking about the same she told us,

I think it was a time when I was working a lot and I wasn’t used to this new pace. And it was not a pace that is human according to me. Because I was working around the clock and every day was the same. I was beginning to feel very tired. These bouts of anxiety used to happen around that time. And I have lived with a sister who has suffered with depression almost all her life, I know what it is like to be depressed, I knew I was not depressed. But I did have bouts of feeling low and while I was totally okay with feeling that way I was not understanding why. So initially you go through a question mark, did I do something to feel this way? So you think about these incidents and realise… No, it’s just something you are feeling. So, now I have not felt it in couple of months but every time I feel it I have to just let it pass. I felt it last maybe in the month of February and I have not felt it since then. But like the way we accept happiness, you have to accept anger and sadness as well and let it pass.

Alia’s sister Shaheen Bhatt has even written a book about dealing with depression called I’ve Never Been (un)Happier.

Being asked whether she talked about it because she thought it would help others, she added,

Honestly, I don’t know how it came up, I was talking to Jitesh (Pillai) , who is my friend, so he was talking about it and I said yeah, I do feel anxiety. And I opened up about it because he is my friend. But it is not like I have come out in the open. I am talking about it like I am talking about anything. I talk about a character and that is normal and my sister she has gone through it and she has made the idea of being depressed very normal. Just like that, having bouts of anxiety… is a normal thing which anyone can go through and I have gone through it.

In an earlier interview, she had mentioned how she felt like crying when she used to get anxious. But what we love is how the actress is absolutely okay with discussing it. We genuinely need more people in the limelight to discuss mental health issues such as this.

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