‘Para kang naka-microscope’: Kim Chiu opens up about critics, mental health, self-care

Miguel Dumaual, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 15 2021 07:15 PM | Updated as of Oct 21 2021 05:31 PM

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MANILA — After 15 years in showbiz, and enduring a “super challenging” 2020, actress-host Kim Chiu has learned to navigate living “under a microscope,” by protecting her mental health, prioritizing her well-being, and segregating whose words about her matter.

Chiu, who quickly became a superstar after winning the first-ever teen edition of “Pinoy Big Brother” in 2006, said the highs and lows of her career have strengthened her character and taught her how to grapple with controversies and criticisms. 

“Last year was the super challenging year talaga for me,” Chiu said, referring to her viral remark about her home network ABS-CBN’s forced broadcast shutdown. “Parang everything you do, naka-microscope na sila, ‘yung pinakamali doon sa sinabi mo.”

While Chiu has described that chapter as one of the “darkest” in her life, she has nonetheless taken with her lessons she still applies today, as she continues to be seen daily via “It’s Showtime” and “ASAP Natin ‘To,” among other projects.

“For me, learn from your mistakes. And then take care of your mental health also, protect yourself from those people who can actually hurt you. Tao din naman kami. 'Pag may nagsasabi sa ‘yong, ‘Ang tanga-tanga mo,’ ang sakit-sakit naman.

“Pero iniisip ko na lang, hindi naman niya ako kilala. Bakit niya ako sasabihan ng ‘tanga’? Hindi naman tayo magkakilala, so bakit ka magkakaroon ng freedom to tell me those things? Nasi-segregate ko na ‘yung people who can actually hurt me and people who can just pass by,” she said.

Speaking with ABS-CBN News, in an interview arranged by Garnier, Chiu also shared how she takes care of herself mentally and physically. She discussed in detail her fitness routine and night-time regimen, including her regular use of Garnier’s Vitamin C Serum.

Chiu was candid about her past physical insecurities, and how she dealt with them over the years, given the nature of her job that has made her face a fixture on the small and big screens, on billboards, and now on social media.

“I’m just very thankful that destiny brought me here, and until now, after 15 years, I’m still here. ‘Yung dream ko lang talaga is makita ako on national TV. Hanggang ngayon, I’m still living my dream,” she said.

Her first decade and a half in showbiz have not been without challenges — from the controversies surrounding her relationships, and intrigues on social media — but Chiu would gladly take them, if that means the fulfillment of her dream.

“There is no easy life. ‘Di ba bago magka-rainbow, may ulan muna, may baha, may bagyo? So that’s part of it. ‘Yung showbiz career, parang life line — up, down, up, down — as long as it’s doing that, buhay ka pa, okay pa ‘yun,” she said.

Chiu is most grateful to her legion of supporters, whom she thanked for standing by her through the ups and downs of her career and parts of her personal life that were made public.

“Ang dami-dami nang nangyari, andiyan pa rin talaga sila. Hindi sila nag-give up. Hindi sila, ‘Ay, nakakapagod na kay Kim, ayaw na namin,’” she said.

“‘Yung time and effort na binibigay nila para sa akin, ang laki ng mga puso nila. Para bigyan nila ako ng ganitong oras, ganitong pagmamahal, ganitong pakikipaglaban just to show na mahal nila ako, and they’re there for me… I consider myself lucky, kasi hindi sila nawala.”