Christy Carlson Romano, the actress best known for starring in Disney shows Even Stevens, Kim Possible, and Cadet Kelly, reached five years sober this past July.
Carlson Romano has spoken publicly about the effects of being a child actor. “I have two friends from my earlier Disney Channel days who died by suicide…And though I might not know their exact struggles, I do believe I have an idea of how being in the spotlight can warp your sense of reality.”
Carlson Romano struggled with alcohol, self-harm, and other self-destructive behaviors for ten years before getting sober. She says starting her acting career young made her miss out on developmental milestones and struggle to learn communication skills. Being publicly scrutinized from a young age, and not feeling like she had people she could trust, left her feeling vulnerable; she masked those feelings with substances.
“I was highly criticized for my youth,” she said, “which fueled my desire to prove everybody wrong. I became a bit harder-edged, binge drank more at loud nightclubs, and started to accept the transient natures of love, sex, and friendship. Growing up, I entertained thousands of families only to feel completely lonely.”
Carlson Romano says staying sober has allowed her to make “clear-headed decisions that keep [her] on the right path.” Her most recent path was graduating from college and starting a family with her husband. She says, “When I look back, I can see that it’s all I ever wanted.”
If you are struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder, there is help and hope. TruHealing Centers offers high-quality treatment for addiction and mental health disorders in facilities across the country. Our staff—many of whom are in recovery themselves—will help you build the life you want in recovery. To learn more, call an admissions specialist at 410-593-0005.