Sharon Stone says she was treated in a “brutally unkind” way by Hollywood and the public after surviving a life-threatening brain aneurysm.
In 2001 the star underwent surgery after being hospitalized from a stroke. The ensuing recovery put the now 61-year-old actress’ career and life on hold while she relearned how to do basic things like walk, talk and write — all while battling for custody of her child. Since then, she’s bounced back to become an advocate for brain-aging diseases that disproportionately affect women.
Now that the star has fully recovered, she’s looking back and getting candid about those that mistreated or ignored her during her time of need.
“People treated me in a way that was brutally unkind,” she told Variety at an event she hosted to raise awareness for Women’s Brain Health initiatives. “From other women in my own business to the female judge who handled my custody case, I don’t think anyone grasps how dangerous a stroke is for women and what it takes to recover — it took me about seven years.”
Stone thanked Bernard Arnault, LVMH head and now the second-richest person in the world, for giving her a contract with Dior to help her get back on her feet in show business. However, she believes her life after the stroke is a far cry from where it was headed beforehand, which the actress noted while comparing herself to Princess Diana.
“I had to remortgage my house. I lost everything I had. I lost my place in the business. I was like the hottest movie star, you know?” she explained. “It was like Miss Princess Diana and I were so famous — and she died and I had a stroke. And we were forgotten.”
The star previously discussed her harrowing recovery during an episode of “Oprah’s Master Class” in 2014.
“I thought that I was dying for a long time, even after I came home,” she said. “There was a part of me that felt like wow, I lost so much. My career was basically over, my family was over, I got divorced, my child was taken away — a lot of my identity, I thought. I got down, down to it. And when I got down to it, it’s like being a phoenix. I was burned to the ground. Because everything I had been before, I thought, ‘I’m not any of those things anymore.’”