Alessandra de Rossi has been living on her own since the age of 18.
The Watch List actress tells PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) during an exclusive interview on February 12, "Wala akong choice, e. Family ko nasa Italy, nag-asawa kapatid ko at 19, so maiiwan talaga ako."
Alessandra—or Alex, as family and friends call her—is referring to her sister Assunta, who married former congressman Jules Ledesma in March 2004.
Assunta and Alex are the only members of their family who got into local showbiz.
Their two sisters Margherita and Isabel are both based in Italy.
But even if Alex felt she had no choice but to live on her own back then, the actress says the experience helped her become the person she is now.
She relates, "Sobrang laki ng growth ko as a person.
"Lahat ng desisyon ko sa akin nanggagaling. Lahat ng pagkakamali ko, ako rin magbabayad.
"Wala ako ibang puwedeng sisihin. 'Sabi ng nanay ko ganyan, sabi ni ganito, or na-manipulate ako ng…' No, ako iyon.
"Ako lahat iyon, so sa pag-arte, ang laki ng naitulong niya. Talagang tinanggal niya shell ko."
Alex currently lives in Quezon City.
In a previous interview with PEP.ph, Alex referred to her house as a "blessing."
"Iyon kasi ang available nung time na bumibili ako. Blessing siya talaga. Sobrang ano, ten years to pay, ten percent lang yung down, e, bakit naman hindi mo kukunin, di ba?"
The actress now says of the house, "It's an old house. Malaki lang talaga siya. Kasya buong barangay doon."
Since it follows an old French-style theme, has Alex ever thought of renovating it to her personal liking?
Shaking her head, she says paying her monthly due of PHP150,000 became her priority.
The award-winning actress says, "Dati kasi, parang, 'O, sige, may binabayaran akong bahay, e.' Kailangan ko ito gawin or else mauubusan ako ng pera.
"Nangyari sa akin kasi, e. Meron ako tinanggihan, nawala sa isip ko na nagbabayad pala ako ng PHP150,000 a month.
"Kailangan ko ito gawin or else mauubusan ako ng pera. Nangyari na iyon sa akin before, e."
She was in her early 30s when she completed the payment.
These days, the 35-year-old actress has become more careful and "napaka-choosy" when it comes to her projects.
"Nung nabayaran ko na iyong house two years ago ba o three, fully paid na, wala na. 'No, no, no, no no."
Where is her favorite spot in the house?
Alex says, "Iyong likod, yong garden. Puro puno, e, 'tapos hindi mo nakikita iyong kapitbahay.
"Puno at langit lang, so parang feeling mo sa iyo ang mundo. Wala kang nakikitang iba. That feeling."
Her international film Watch List will start showing on February 19 in cinemas.