You knew her as the quirky, relatable, goofball, the down-to-earth princess, and the fearless jock. From the age of 7, Amanda Bynes was the image of childhood stardom, and the audience loved her. She skyrocketed to teen fame, growing up alongside her fans, who revered her for her ability to play “the real girl” in all her roles.
Like many actors who enter the cut-throat world of Hollywood at a young age, the pressure to be flawless is suffocating. Struggling with depression, addiction and body image, Bynes spiraled, but made the mature decision to take a break from acting and take time to heal.
Now 32-years-old, Bynes is making a comeback, and everyone should listen to her story. Bynes graced the cover of Paper Magazine this month, instantly blowing up the internet as her old fans rejoiced in being reunited with their teen idol. In her interview, she reveals all, her drug addictions, her Twitter rampages, and her decision to seek help.
“Those days of experimenting [with substances] are long over. I’m not sad about it and I don’t miss it because I really feel ashamed of how those substances made me act. When I was off of them, I was completely back to normal and immediately realized what I had done — it was like an alien had literally invaded my body. That is such a strange feeling,” Bynes told Paper Magazine.
In 2014, Bynes enrolled in FIDM, The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, in Los Angeles. She will graduate soon, and has been thriving in an environment where she can learn and create. Apart from potentially designing her own line one day, Bynes says she is ready to return to acting, this time as the strong woman she has grown to be.
“I have no fear of the future. I’ve been through the worst and came out the other end and survived it so I just feel like it’s only up from here.”