Emma Watson has a bone to pick with society when it comes to turning 30.
The actress of Harry Potter fame has virtually grown up before audiences’ eyes over the last nearly two decades. Now, as she approaches a milestone birthday behind the scenes, the Little Women actress is addressing how it has felt to be turning 30 in today’s society.
With her birthday approaching in April, Watson initially didn’t understand the “big fuss” about the age and did not consider it “a big deal,” she explained to British Vogue. “Cut to 29, and I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I feel so stressed and anxious.’ And I realize it’s because there is suddenly this bloody influx of subliminal messaging around. If you have not built a home, if you do not have a husband, if you do not have a baby, and you are turning 30, and you’re not in some incredibly secure, stable place in your career, or you’re still figuring things out…There’s just this incredible amount of anxiety.”
The actress is indeed going on dates, as she confirmed to British Vogue, and gets help from friends who are “really good” at setting her up. However, no matter how those dates go, she has found happiness being her own partner.
“I never believed the whole ‘I’m happy single’ spiel,” she said in the interview. “I was like, ‘This is totally spiel.’ It took me a long time, but I’m very happy. I call it being self-partnered.”
On the work front, Watson is next due to portray Little Women‘s Meg March in Greta Gerwig‘s adaptation, due out on Dec. 25, in which she’ll bring to life a woman choosing marriage and motherhood.
“With Meg’s character, her way of being a feminist is making the choice—because that’s really, for me anyway, what feminism is about,” Watson said in the interview. “Her choice is that she wants to be a full-time mother and wife…To Jo [Saoirse Ronan], being married is really some sort of prison sentence. But Meg says, ‘You know, I love him and this is my choice and I’m really happy and this is what I want. And just because my dreams are different from yours, it doesn’t mean they’re unimportant.'”
See the full feature in the December issue of British Vogue, available via digital download and newsstands on Friday, Nov. 8.