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Gabrielle Union says her PTSD has been 'on 10' due to racial unrest, pandemic

Gabrielle Union opened up about how the past several months of racial unrest, as well as the pandemic, have affected her PTSD.
Lanvin : Photocall - Paris Fashion Week - Menswear F/W 2020-2021
Gabrielle Union attends the Lanvin Menswear Fall/Winter 2020-2021 show on January 19, 2020 in Paris.Dominique Charriau / WireImage
/ Source: TODAY

Gabrielle Union opened up about some of the mental health challenges she’s been dealing with in the midst of the pandemic and the ongoing racial unrest in the U.S.

In an interview with Women’s Health for the magazine's October 2020 issue, the actor said her post-traumatic stress disorder has been “on 10” in recent months.

“The combination of a pandemic and this racial reckoning, alongside being inundated with (images of) the brutalization of Black bodies, has sent my PTSD into overdrive,” she said. “There’s just terror in my body.”

Union, 47, has spoken openly in the past about the PTSD she has suffered since she was raped at gunpoint at age 19. She has since become an advocate for rape survivors and has spoken out about the benefits of therapy.

The actress, activist and beauty entrepreneur talked about how she manages her PTSD by breaking out her “emotional fix-me toolkit.”

“I try to run through all the situations,” she told Women’s Health. “I call it my ‘what’s the likelihood of X happening?’ method.”

She also opened up about the aftermath of filing a complaint against the producers of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” in which she which alleged a “toxic culture" at the show that included racist jokes and discrimination.

Since filing the complaint, Union said many women have reached out to her to share their experiences with racism in the entertainment industry, leaving her with a renewed sense of responsibility to help others.

“All of these people came through the door,” she said. “How do I create a larger movement to address all this trauma and all this harm? I can’t just swallow the information I now have.”

The “Being Mary Jane” star also said that while perhaps systemic discrimination is beginning to shift across the U.S., she remains cautious.

“I’m not going to factor in change I have yet to see,” she said. “For the most part, across all industries, you see the same power structure that existed before George Floyd. All of these initiatives that people are so excited about—if the people at the top haven’t changed, and they’re not interested in creating more space up here, how far are these people that we’re bringing in going?”