Silver linings: 2 child stars who went from good to bad, to good again

Smiles. Big, bubbly personalities. Drew Barrymore and Demi Lovato have been known for these attributes since they began their careers as children. But behind these smiling faces were difficult childhoods and issues. Their unconventional environments made it difficult to grow up normally and lead both of them to serious issues such as drugs, mental illness and alcoholism. Luckily, both of these famous faces are back to health and therefore they are our blog’s silver linings.

Drew Barrymore:

Barrymore’s childhood was far from the norm. Her mother, Ildiko Jaid, split from her husband, Drew Barrymore Jr. and began to take her daughter on auditions. In fact, her very first television debut was for a dog food commercial and she was only a year-old. By the time she was four, she appeared in her first film. But the film that launched her success, was her role in E.T.: The Extraterrestrial when she was just seven. From that point on, Drew was in the spotlight, with her mother by her side. Drew had a very hard relationship with her mother, and she tells Today, that when she thinks of her mother during those years she gave her “‘zero protection, zero consistency,’”. shares that Jaid took Drew into clubs including, Studio 54 from a young age leading her to into drugs and alcohol consumption. By the time she was 13, she was in the hospital for drug addiction, because her mother and her friends would go out almost every night of the week, according to Drew emancipated from her mother at the age of 14. She reflects on the Today Show, saying “‘… walking away from my mom and shaking hands, and saying, ‘We need to emancipate,’ those were just the facts,” Drew recalled. “That was where our journey had led us to, and we were actually okay with— that that’s where we needed to go at that point.’” Drew went on to having years of trouble with drug abuse, failed marriages and a bad girl reputation. But when she started her production company, she began to turn a new leaf. She began to be a successful businesswoman and actress again. Today, Drew is speaking out about her troubled past and is happy and healthy with two beautiful children, although she was recently divorced.

Demi Lovato:

Demi is known to many around the world, just by her first name. The pop star and actress has truly made her mark on TV and music in recent years. Like many child stars, Demi has had her series of struggles with drug addiction, mental illness and eating disorders. Demi began her career singing at a Dallas Cowboys halftime show. By the time she was 10, she was starring in Barney and Friends, with fellow pop star, Selena Gomez. Demi soon went on to play minor roles in movies and tv shows until she landed a Disney mini series, As the Bell Rings. When Demi was 16, she was cast in a Disney Channel Original Movie: Camp Rock with none other than the famous Jonas Brothers. Afterward, she would go on to record a few tracks with them and Disney. She was then given her own show on Disney called “Sonny With a Chance.” But even before all this fame, Demi had struggles with her body image. She tells American Way Magazine, that her mother was bulimic after she split from her father when Demi was only 18-months-old. “‘Even though I was 2 or 3 years old,” Lovato says, “being around somebody who was 80 pounds and had an active eating disorder … it’s hard not to grow up like that.’” When she was only 12-years-old when she began her journey with bulimia and self harm by cutting her wrists. After she landed her role in Camp Rock, she was using cocaine, oxycontin and drinking. According to Cosmopolitan,  Demi believed since she was making the most money in her family she could do whatever she pleased. After punching a dancer on her tour with the Jonas Brothers, Demi was sent to rehab. There, she would be diagnosed as bulimic and bipolar. Since seeking treatment and recovering in 2012, Demi has become one of the largest celebrity voices with dealing with addiction and mental health. As she continues to make history in the music charts, Demi continues to make her own history by opening up about her mental illness. She explains to AW Magazine, that the more people discuss mental illness, the more prevalent and pressing this issue becomes.

-Maeve Dale


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