Constance Wu just opened up about the heartbreaking truth behind her sudden Hollywood hiatus.
In an emotional new Twitter message, the Crazy Rich Asians star revealed she tried to take her own life after being severely bullied for a string of controversial tweets she shared three years ago.
“I was afraid of coming back on social media because I almost lost my life from it: 3 years ago, when I made careless tweets about the renewal of my TV show, it ignited outrage and internet shaming that got pretty severe,” Wu wrote. “I felt awful about what I’d said, and when a few DMs from a fellow Asian actress told me I’d become a blight on the Asian American community, I started feeling like I didn’t even deserve to live anymore. That I was a disgrace to AsAms, and they’d be better off without me.”
The comments she referred to were those she made when her show, Fresh Off the Boat, was renewed for a sixth season. “So upset right now that I’m literally crying. Ugh. F**k,” she tweeted, followed by, “F**king hell,” less than an hour after ABC made the announcement. And when a fan congratulated her on the renewal, calling it “great news,” she replied, “No it’s not.”
Wu later explained that she was upset because she had to give up another project that she was “passionate about” to do the show for the sixth season. At the time of its release, FOTB was the first Asian American comedy on broadcast television in two decades, so her negative reaction to it upset many in the community.
The social media hate she received from those tweets, Wu said today, completely consumed her, and even led to many of her Asian American colleagues avoiding her or cutting her off.
“AsAms don’t talk about mental health enough,” Wu wrote. “While we’re quick to celebrate representation wins, there’s a lot of avoidance around the more uncomfortable issues within our community.”
Wu said she became so depressed that she tried to commit suicide. “Looking back, it’s surreal that a few DMs convinced me to end my own life, but that’s what happened. Luckily, a friend found me and rushed me to the ER,” the actress wrote. “It was a scary moment that made me reassess a lot in my life. For the next few years, I put my career aside to focus on my mental health.”
In the post, Wu went on to address the importance of working on one’s mental health and getting help when one’s thoughts or emotions seem to take control of one’s actions. She also shared information for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.
Now, “after a little break from Hollywood and a lot of therapy,” Wu said she feels ready to jump back on social media, reenter Hollywood, and make movies again.
The actress is currently the lead in East Bay and stars in The Terminal List and upcoming film Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile. She also recently wrote a memoir, Making a Scene, set to be released later this year. Wu said she wrote her book “to reach out and help people talk about the uncomfortable stuff in order to understand it, reckon with it, and open pathways to healing.”
This article originally appeared in Harper’s BAZAAR US
- Constance Wu