Priyanka Chopra reveals racist bullying caused her to leave USA as a teenager

Natasha Preskey
·2 min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Priyanka Chopra has opened up about the racist bullying that caused her to leave the US as a teenager and finish high school in India instead.

Chopra wrote about her experiences in her upcoming memoir Unfinished, in which she explores her childhood, the beauty pageants that launched her acting career and her relationship with singer Nick Jonas.

The star told People that the bullying "stripped" her of her confidence and that she "took it very personally".

"Deep inside, it starts gnawing at you," she said in an interview with the magazine. "I went into a shell. I was like, 'Don't look at me. I just want to be invisible'."

The actress was brought up by her parents and grandparents in India and moved to the US when she was 12, where she lived for three years before returning to finish school.

Chopra's classmates would shout racist insults at her as she walked down the corridor, she wrote in a memoir extract seen by People.

The star added that she sought help from a guidance counsellor to no avail, and she became unsure of "who I was".

The 38-year-old said she was "healed" by returning to India and began to grow in confidence when she started acting in school shows.

The star warned people who are in a similar situation not to isolate themselves, and urged them to talk to "people who care", including a therapist or counsellor.

Earlier this year, the actress spoke about cultural differences between her and her singer husband Nick Jonas.

The pair married in 2018, after Jonas boldly slid into the actress's Twitter DMs two years previously.

Chopra replied telling her future husband to text her instead, and the pair then met in person in 2017 at the Vanity Fair Oscars after-party. The pair got engaged in July 2018 and got married in two separate ceremonies (one Christian and one Hindu) later the same year.

Asked by The Sunday Times whether the age gap with her 28-year-old partner was a bigger hurdle than their cultural differences, Chopra said "neither" had been a problem.

She said: "Nick took to India like a fish to water. But just like a normal couple, you have to understand each other’s habits and what each other likes.

"So it’s more of an adventure than trying to figure out hurdles. None of it was really that hard."

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