Dakota Johnson is very ‘sensitive’: ‘I feel so much all the time that it’s exhausting’


Dakota Johnson covers the latest issue of The Edit, net-a-porter.com’s in-house online magazine. I like the editorial a lot, mostly because they’re using whatever means necessary to hide Dakota’s bangs. Plus, I like the library/book theme. Dakota is currently promoting How To Be Single, which comes out just before Valentine’s Day. I actually think the movie looks sort of cute and I’m okay with Dakota being cast as a rom-com heroine. While I used to find her somewhat insipid, there’s something “there” on-screen. She’s got some kind of spark, an It Factor. Anyway, you can read her full profile here, and here are some highlights:

Her latest tattoo is an Aldous Huxley quote “Lightly, my darling”: “Some of the others I’m not so proud of. I went through a phase where I loved tattoos, and I loved the feeling of getting tattooed. But now I’ve outgrown them mostly, and [because] I always have to cover them for jobs, God, they’re annoying! Basically, I really should have listened to everyone. But therein lies my problem in life!”

She’s very sensitive: “I feel so much all the time that it’s exhausting. I cried four times during the Golden Globes, and once was during the commercials…I’m a quiet observer. [Growing up] I was demure some of the time, but also outspoken… I was ‘colorful’. I didn’t abide by rules very well. I was like a wild, feral little child.”

On the nature of celebrity: “It almost feels like a free-for-all nowadays. There’s no more mystery, no more elegance. The Golden Globes, for example, used to be so special. It was a time when you got to see your favorite people, who were making your favorite movies, all interacting with each other; having some witty banter, being enticing and charming. You didn’t see actors unless they were on the red carpet; they weren’t publicly photographed all the time. Now anyone can take my picture, and I can take anyone’s picture, at any moment. I feel like something has been lost. It’s like a little bit of magic is slipping away and I don’t know why. I know it is. And, today, I don’t feel OK with that.”

She feels like the celebrity experience is tacky: “I understood that my family was famous. I saw the way it felt from the inside, and that put me off ever feeling like I was capable of gawking at someone because they were famous.”

Watching her parents act: “I was around for a lot of it and I would watch them. But there were also things I could see that I didn’t want to, like watch my parents have sex with other people. And there was a scene where my mom got slapped in the face. I lost my mind! I couldn’t deal with that at all.”

Getting ready to film the Fifty Shades sequels: “[I have to] get ready to crawl into a hole for six months, say goodbye to my friends and my life, and stop dating bread.”

[From The Edit]

She also talks about being younger and trying on all of her mom’s red carpet gowns and watching her mom get ready for events. It feels like a dream world, like she had such a happy, eventful, glamorous childhood and even more than that, she’s aware of how special it was. That being said, I had no idea that she was so “sensitive,” that she cries at the drop of a hat, that she would get so emotional about the state of celebrity these days. It’s sort of funny, right? She was literally tearing up as she talked about the lack of glamour at the Golden Globes.


Photos courtesy of The Edit.

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51 Responses to “Dakota Johnson is very ‘sensitive’: ‘I feel so much all the time that it’s exhausting’”

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  1. Nope says:

    So many hats.

  2. Alex says:

    I’m sensitive but I cry at things like POC getting killed at higher rates, or thinking of all the children being knowingly poisoned in Flint…not red carpet glamour.
    Being sensitive can suck sometimes it feels like the weight of the world is on your heart. I can’t even watch the news for very long

    • minx says:

      + 10000

    • CLINIQUA says:

      ‘I’m quiet and demure….also wild, feral and outspoken.’

      Also contradictory.

      • Alex says:

        Not really. It just depends. I’m a super sensitive person but I’m also opinionated when it maters, sarcastic to a fault and will clap back with a quickness if provoked. At the core I’m a quiet observer but thats just one facet of my personality

      • Elle says:

        I think that’s what she was getting at. That she has opposing sides to herself. And I also think she used the glamour/globes as a reference of her sensitivity.. To highlight the intensity of it. Sometime highly sensitive people get emotional over the most basic or simple things. It’s not always heavy things.. I find myself avoiding the news at times. The real issues can be hard to face. They put me into an anxious and depressed state and sometimes I would rather avoid that. So I kind of smh at myself when I get emotional over minor things.

      • Veronica says:

        Well – and I know this is crazy – but women can have multi-faceted personalities. All of those emotions can exist in the same person at different times. Whether you think that’s genuine or she’s just creating a public profile is a different matter.

    • Amelia says:

      “…I wish we could all get along like we used to in middle school! I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and everyone would eat it and be happy.” *sobs*

      EDIT – Having read some of the comments from CBers who identify as empaths, I now feel like an asshat.
      I’ll be in the corner…

    • Esmom says:

      I’m guessing she gets emotional about that stuff, too, but those weren’t the topics being discussed, Hollywood and her place in it were.

      I used to cry easily until SSRIs have blunted me a bit (both good and bad)…but no amount of medication can help with the angst I always feel during election cycles. Like now. With Trump, for example. I feel like how can people go on with their lives with this circus unfolding? I’m simultaneously enraged and despairing. Disproportionately so, it seems.

    • Pinky says:

      You and I might be kindred spirits.


    • BooBooLaRue says:

      hmmm someone who cries so easily, seems to me she doesn’t have good boundaries and perhaps might benefit from some counseling and perhaps an antidepressant medication. only because I have been in this situation do I suggest this

      • katey says:

        Seriously? She sounds fine to me – balanced and happy. I cry easily and I certainly am not depressed nor do I have issues with anything drastic I can think of. Everyone’s different.

  3. Tiffany says:

    She has Melanie’s original face. She looks a bit like Tippi as well.

    • CLINIQUA says:

      If you watch an old Don Johnson movie when he was early 20s, you’ll see she is his twin. His lips, mouth and even a bit of his hooded eyes.

      She looks nothing like her Mom’s original face, or the grandmom.

      • amilu says:

        Agreed. She is Don made over. I don’t see Melanie Griffith at all.

      • Janis says:

        I saw a bit of Miami Vice the other day (I know…don’t judge) and it really hit me how much Dakota looks like Don. It’s creepy. Either way she’s cute, has some talent and seems down-to-earth considering her family history. I like her.

    • Boston Green Eyes says:

      She also looks a little like Gillian Anderson in one of the pics.

    • katey says:

      I agree she looks like Tippi here a lot. I don’t see Don Johnson in her AT ALL. Funny how we all see something different!

  4. FingerBinger says:

    That’s a bad cover. She looks like a mime.

  5. Wren says:

    She’s probably a highly sensitive person. I’m one too and quite frankly it sucks sometimes. I don’t cry at the drop of a hat but there are certain movies and TV shows I avoid because I know they’ll make me overwhelmingly emotional. You can get worked up over stupid crap because everything is amplified yet nobody else realizes it. My husband has the sensitivity of a brick which makes things difficult sometimes.

    • Elisa the I. says:

      +1. That was my first thought when I read the interview. I am a HSP myself, and reading Elaine Aron’s book “The highly sensitive person” helped me a lot in understanding this better.

      Feeling – but also hearing, seeing, smelling – seemingly everything can be really overwhelming. My coping strategy has always been to be very controlling (of my emotions). So on the outside I appear to be cool or even distant but that’s just my way of dealing with the chaos inside. People always tell me that it’s difficult to figure out how I tick. 🙂

      So her being contradicting in how she feels/behaves is kind of typical for HSPs in my experience.

    • supposedtobeworking says:

      I’m in the sensitive group too. It is overwhelming anticipating difficult conversations, hanging out with people who are draining and preparing to be social when not in the mood are exhausting. You take on the weight of the tone set by the people around you. I don’t dramatic people well for long, and I FEEL for TV shows.
      My daughter, who is 10 sums it up perfectly. She isn’t a drama queen at all, and is a pretty chill kid, but she cries at TV shows or movies (like Kung Fu Panda 2) so easily and her feelings are easily hurt. When she cries, she wails, and she says “I have such big feelings” between snotty, teary sobs.

    • Sorbonne says:

      Ha, my husband has the sensivity of a brick as well. Normally. Only when we started watching Downton Abbey he cried all the time, like ALL the time.
      I couldnt believe it, because i thought it was amusing but not touching.

  6. Little Darling says:

    I’m a total empath as well, sensitive Sally over here. I will cry at certain commercials, but moreover, I take in a lot of emotions from other people. I’m super sensitive energetically as well, I can walk into a room and instantly take on other people’s vibes. I think it’s why I’m a great birth worker. (:

    I also feel deeply for news stories (can’t really watch the news although when I do I will usually become highly emotive) and for smaller acts of kindness. I’m deeply moved.

    Being so sensitive can definitely make you feel a bit like a freak, and as a woman it can seem to be interpreted as a “weakness” or a character flaw or lack of control. I don’t like that.

    • Wren says:

      That’s a really good description of it. I was searching for those words. When I interact with people it’s like I absorb their emotions, which sometimes isn’t a good thing. Having people angry with me or even around me can be pretty stressful. Like getting blasted with heat from a fire. But on the other hand it’s great because reading people and responding appropriately doesn’t take a ton of effort.

      It’s hard to describe, but I also tend to “mirror” other people’s emotions. Unconsciously sometimes, which makes it easy to lose yourself and put your needs aside in the face of someone else’s strong emotional state. My husband suppresses a lot of emotion but I still “feel” it and I react to it.

      I also never watch the news because it’s always so heartbreaking. Even the acts of human kindness stories will move me to tears. I bawled for 30 minutes over a video of someone rescuing a kitten.

    • Carte Blanche says:

      Have you ever taken a Myers-Briggs personality test? You may be an INFJ. I am, and can take on people’s emotions as soon as I see them.

      • Little Darling says:

        I just took it and I am in fact INFJ!!! Thanks Carte!!

        Such interesting information, and I have to say, it fits me to perfection. Love it!

        Also love so many other *feelers* exist here with me!!

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      Me, too. I can feel other people’s emotions very clearly and get sucked into them even if I don’t know the person very well. I walk into a room and feel anxiety, sorrow, anger or whatever the person is feeling, and I have to tell myself that these are not my feelings at times. It is usually easy for me to tell when someone is saying something that is intentionally different from the way they feel, which can be useful, but the whole thing is exhausting sometimes. If someone I love is suffering emotionally I can hardly stand it. And yes, the news, good and bad, is like being put through a wringer.

      • lucy2 says:

        Have you ever had those feelings and not been able to figure out where it’s coming from? I occasionally get the “something’s wrong” feeling and can’t figure it out, only to find out later. The worst was years ago, by myself at home all day I couldn’t shake that feeling, and that evening found out my friend’s toddler had broken his leg horribly, and they’d spent the past 24 hours at the hospital. As soon as I got that news, the feeling went away.

        I just read the other day “other people’s negativity is not your problem”. I am constantly telling myself stuff like this, but it’s so hard to live by.

      • Wren says:

        I tell myself that too but when you physically feel other people’s emotional states it’s incredibly difficult. You can’t just set them aside. Sometimes I wish I had actual armor to ward off the energy I pick up on.

    • lucy2 says:

      I’m the same way, and it can really sucks. I can’t stand tension, and can definitely feel it right away, or if a person is giving off weird or bad vibes. Agree about the news. If I see or read any bad story, I immediately imagine what it must have been like and then can’t shake the feelings. Animal stuff is hard too! I would love to volunteer at a shelter but I would bawl my eyes out every day.
      Mostly I can’t stand when someone is angry or upset with me or others. Two friends of mine just had a fight, one just complained about the other to me, and I know the other is going to later, and I’ve felt physically uncomfortable all morning because of it. Frankly I wish everyone would grow the hell up and stop looking for drama, because it upsets me when I’m not even involved!

      • Intuitive says:

        I know, being a HSP can feel like such a burden at times, but the upside is that positive emotions are felt just as intensely. And you often just KNOW stuff that other people don’t pick up on which can be really useful in life, as long as you allow yourself to listen to your intuition.

  7. claire says:

    Is this Lana del Ray in actress form?

    • Esmom says:

      I don’t think she’s nearly as angst ridden, in fact I’d say she’s pretty happy and ground despite feeling some things more deeply.

  8. Granger says:

    I haven’t seen her in much, but I don’t get the “it” thing from her at all.

    • QQ says:

      Neither do I and I won’t make it happen either, She looks like a tired mom of two, is a collision of tired eyes and perma bad Hair

    • Josefina says:

      Dakota is just an uninteresting person. She seems perfectly nice and everything, but she doesn’t have any type of movie star charisma. Which would be cool if she was actually talented, but she’s just alright.

    • minx says:

      I don’t either. She seems like a nice enough young woman but I don’t get any charisma or zing from her, at all.

  9. 1bb2 says:

    I think she’s one of those people that can cry easily. I saw some of her interviews where she laughed too hard that she cried lol and in others she seemed to get teary real fast.

  10. Sesame says:

    As soon as I saw the header, I thought “she’s an empath”…. My cousin identifies as an empath as well, which is how I came to know about it.

  11. Nancy says:

    She seems very normal for someone in her position and with her parents being who they are. I am a tad of a bitch but also know sensitivity very well. Although I hate when sensitivity is equated to weakness. Enough about me, I like this girl, she doesn’t try too hard to be the “it” girl like the jlaws and other current starlets.

  12. Someone says:

    Dakota is dumb as a box of nails. She’s so expressionless. I feel bad shitty actors like her get paid so much while so many other people toil. And most people who identify as so called empaths are just way too self centred and amplify what happens around them cuz they think they’re the focal point of every incident in the universe. I’ve met such ‘ empaths’ . ugh. Totally lack any actual depth of thought.

    • Really? says:

      Someone appears to be the kind of person that empaths should avoid at all costs. I imagine many readers of this blog could also feel the angry, hostile and negative energy that almost jumped off the screen with the comments made by Someone.

  13. iheartgossip says:

    She really has zero idea about herself. She is bland, vanilla and priveledged cause of whom her folks are; otherwise she’d be another stoned out barista at Starbucks.

  14. Ming says:

    Sensitive Sally over here. Check out the book, the Art of Empathy…amazing!

  15. What's inside says:

    HSPs do not do well as celebrities. That business chews you up and spits you out as seen time and again over the years. I agree she really has the look of her father, Don Johnson, and have been struck by that over and over again. I also agree that she has “that something,” but I think it has to do with her youth and may fade away quickly.