Shailene Woodley shared intimate new details about her breakup from NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers—and how she ultimately found healing through her work with Showtime’s upcoming eponymous adaptation of Lisa Taddeo’s Three Women.
In Porter‘s January cover story published today, the actress, who split from Rodgers last April while filming the series, revealed that the initial post-split stages were among the “darkest, hardest” times of her life. She added that she learned to cope with these tough emotions on set through her starring role as Gia, a writer who finds solace from the loss of her family in the stories of three women surrounding sex and intimacy.
“It was winter in New York, and my personal life was shitty, so it felt like a big pain bubble for eight months,” Woodley said. “I was so grateful that at least I could go to work and cry and process my emotions through my character.”
The role helped Woodley find greater comfort in emotional expression, facilitating her own healing, she added. “I found a lot of comfort and inspiration from Lisa [Taddeo], in being more available to my emotions and willing to share them a bit more; I’m still working on it,” the actress continued. “It’s hard if you haven’t been conditioned or raised that way, and it’s almost like I felt I found permission via Lisa/Gia to be more [of] an outwardly emotional creature.”
Woodley and Rodgers were first romantically linked in July 2020 and got engaged the following February. In April 2022, they announced they had called off their engagement.
During the interview, Woodley reflected on the lack of privacy she unexpectedly endured during that time. “It honestly never really hit me that millions of people around the world were actually watching,” she said of the very public relationship. “I watched [the] scrutiny, opinions, the desire for people to know my life and his life and our life—it just felt violating in a way that, before, it was fun. I’m a very private person, and so I found that any time I posted anything, I instantly felt like I was sharing too much of who I am with people I didn’t necessarily trust.”
Sabrina Park is a Digital Fellow at HarpersBAZAAR.com where she covers news, fashion, and culture stories. When she’s not writing she loves hanging out with her cat, reading outdoors and scrolling the depths of TikTok.