Trigger warning: This article mentions depression and anxiety.
Although many still believe that showbiz is a glamorous industry, it's usually tough for young artists to grow up under the spotlight. Being exposed to harsh criticism and highly emotional scripts every day is mentally exhausting, even more so for impressionable child stars.
For example, Dirty Linen actress Xyriel Manabat recently revealed that she struggled with depression in her early teen years. "According naman po sa psychologist ko or sa therapist ko, 'yung age daw po talaga na 12 to 13 transition age to young adulthood. Doon po talaga prone 'yung mga anxiety, depression, mental health instability," she divulged to Bernadette Sembrano in an interview on her YouTube channel.
According to Xyriel, showbiz work was the primary trigger for her depression: "'Yung work ko po kasi before, when I experienced that, sobrang bigat." Touching on a particular episode she previously did for a dramatic teselerye, she added, "Ang bigat po niya for my age para dalhin. And sabi po ng psych na parang, meron siyang trigger or meron factor 'yung mga work ko dati."
"Kasi siyempre, sa work po namin, kailangan kontrolado po 'yung emotions mo. For now, iiyak ka. Next scene, masaya ka. Next scene, excited ka tapos devasted ka. Sobrang laking factor po niya sa mental health ng isang tao," she concluded.
Besides work, Xyriel also admitted that her family was a cause of stress and anxiety as well. Like many adolescents today, Xyriel felt that her parents were invalidating her feelings instead of accepting her mental disorders.
"Bukod po doon, family. Hindi po kasi sila open sa ganoon. Kumbaga, feeling nila iniisip ko lang. Feeling nila kaya ako stressed kasi inii-stress ko 'yung sarili ko," she shared. "Ganoon pa po 'yung mindset nila. Nasisisi po nila ako in a way. Tapos ako, eh hirap na nga po ako i-explain 'yung sarili ko, kumbaga ako mismo hindi ko maintindihan."
That said, Xyriel advises parents to guide and support their children as they navigate the entertainment industry. She said, "Okay po na sinusuportahan sila ng parents pero [kailangan ng] guidance. Ine-explain sa kanila 'yung sitwasyon. Ine-explain sa kanila 'yung sistema. Kumbaga, wala pong choice 'yung parents kundi turuan 'yung bata talaga na ma-guide sila kasi kung hindi, magfa-fall apart po 'yung life or 'yung mentality ng bata."
You can watch Xyriel's full interview here: