NEW YORK, March 2 (UPI) -- Ryan Phillippe says he has an intrinsic sense of sadness.
The 40-year-old actor opened up on his battle with depression in an interview with Elle. Phillippe has struggled with the mood disorder since childhood, and told the magazine he passed on the trait to Ava, his 15-year-old daughter with ex-wife Reese Witherspoon.
"You know, depression has been a huge obstacle for me ever since I was a child," he related. "As you get older I think it decreases some, but I'm just innately kind of a sad person. I'm empathetic, and I take on the feelings of others and transpose myself into the position of others."
"I see it in my daughter," he revealed. "She has it, and I wish to hell she didn't. It's just, some people do have this pervading sort of sadness, or they're so analytical that they can kind of take the fun out of things because they think too much."
Phillippe admitted his sensitivity can be a burden, but said he would prefer "to suffer through the sadness than to be a complete moron with no feelings." He and Witherspoon welcomed Ava in 1999, and the teenager took to Instagram to share a throwback photo with her dad last month.
Phillippe and Witherspoon also have an 11-year-old son named Deacon, and the actor shares 3-year-old daughter Kailani with actress Alexis Knapp. He currently stars as a man suspected of killing a child on an ABC adaptation of Australian drama Secrets & Lies.