Jennette McCurdy is sharing her truth.
The former Nickelodeon star, best known for starring in “iCarly” and the spinoff “Sam & Cat,” is opening up about her difficult upbringing and what’s led her to “finally” feel “free.”
“Life can be dark — and messy. Nobody has a perfect life,” McCurdy shared in a new interview with People.
The 29-year-old has been open before about her past battle with anorexia, something she claims she was introduced to by her mother Debbie, who passed away in 2013 after a battle with cancer. She’s now revealing other dark memories from her childhood, such as witnessing her mother become violent.
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“My earliest memories of childhood were of heaviness, and chaos. My mom’s emotions were so erratic that it was like walking a tightrope every day. The mood fluctuations were daily,” the “Empty Inside” podcast host revealed.
McCurdy has since left her career in Hollywood and has been taking up her own personal projects. She recently finished a one-woman comedy tour titled “I’m Glad My Mom Died.” According to her website, she’s currently penning a memoir of the same name.
She knows it’s possible to turn your life around – but it’s not exactly easy.
“It’s a risk to change your life, but I made it my mission,” she said.
Being in the spotlight wasn’t the plan McCurdy had for herself. Instead, she claims she got into show business at a young age due to her mother’s persistence.
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“My mom had always dreamt of being a famous actor and she became obsessed with making me a star,” McCurdy claimed, adding, “I felt like my job was to keep the peace and I wanted to make my mom happy.”
McCurdy claims her mother bleached her hair and whitened her teeth before she was even a pre-teen. Then came the calorie counting, which led to her eating disorder. And by the age of 17, she claims her mother would perform physical examinations of her. According to the outlet, this meant “Debbie insisted on performing vaginal and breast exams.” McCurdy was also allegedly not allowed to shower alone, she claimed.
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The former entertainer said she believes she’d still be suffering from an eating disorder today if her mother was still alive. She claims it was “only distance” from her mom that allowed her to turn her life around and get “healthy.”
“I did not know how to find my identity without my mom,” she added. “And I’m not going to lie. It was very hard to get here. But now, I’m at a place in my life that I never would have thought was possible. And I finally feel free.”
This isn’t the first time McCurdy has opened up about the childhood trauma she endured at the hands of her mother. In July, she appeared on “Mayim Bialik’s Breakdown,” where she revealed she started eating less based on guidance from her mom.
“‘Well, there’s a thing called calorie restriction.’ Those were her exact words. She did not say the word ‘anorexia,'” McCurdy shared.
“I did not hear the word ‘anorexia’ until… I overheard a doctor talking with my mom a year later when I had lost X amount of weight and was rail-thin, and it sounded like a dinosaur to me,” McCurdy continued.
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“I remember that distinctly, like: ‘Hmm, somebody’s talking about me like I’m a dinosaur.’ But it was her talking to my mom about my eating disorder, which my mom denied in order for her to be able to support it.”
In a 2019 op-ed for HuffPost, McCurdy noted that she doesn’t “hold this against my mom at all.” “I don’t think she could help it,” she penned before alleging: “Mom had been hospitalized for anorexia on several occasions when she was a teenager and I’m not convinced she ever overcame her disordered eating.”
Fox News’ Lauryn Overhultz contributed to this report.
If you or someone you know is suffering from domestic violence, please contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233 or TTY 1−800−787−3224.