Jennette McCurdy, I’m Glad My Mom Died, a new book details the years of abuse she suffered at her mother’s hands. The author’s first memoir offers an honest look at her life as a child celebrity on Nickelodeon and a heartbreaking account of her history, and it soon sold out on Amazon, Target, Walmart, and Barnes & Noble.
You were my perfect little angel once, but now you’re just a little (all caps) “slut, a floozy, all used up,” she said. It’s a shame you squandered it on that ugly monster of a man. TMZ is where I first saw the photos online. As I looked on, you were massaging his hairy stomach. You lied to me about Colton, and I knew it. (I told her that my friend Colton was with me.) The list of your character flaws now includes “evil, conniving, and a liar.”
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You look chubbier, she continued. I can see that your guilt is making you eat. It makes me ill to think of you with his ding-dong in you. Sick! That’s not how I brought you up. And now look what’s happened to my good daughter! Who is this new creature and where did she go? You’ve evolved into a hideous creature.
This gruesome passage only scratches the surface of the trauma McCurdy suffered at her mother’s hands. She reportedly examined her daughter’s breasts and genitalia until she was 16 years old, encouraging her to develop an eating disorder.
It’s obvious that McCurdy’s revelations about childhood abuse have struck a chord with her listeners. The book quickly rose to the top of bestseller lists everywhere it was published, including Amazon and the New York Times Book Review. The former actress posted on Instagram after the release of her memoir to express her gratitude for the positive reception.
It’s meaningful and rewarding to me in a unique manner to see how emotionally linked you are to this through your postings and comments, she added. I’ve been heard, and I want you to know the same thing.
A Child Actor’s Worst Nightmares Are Exposed by Jennette Mccurdy
Jennette McCurdy, a former child star, has released a memoir with the provocative title, “I’m Glad My Mom Died.”
Throughout the book, McCurdy, who rose to fame on Nickelodeon’s iCarly and Sam and Cat, more than proves her point by describing her mother’s mental and physical abuse over the course of several years. As a result, we get an intimate portrait of one person’s harrowing life, but one that simultaneously highlights a larger systemic issue. The child star system is viciously criticized in I’m Glad My Mom Died.
McCurdy says her mother asked her, “You want to be Mommy’s little actress?” and from then on she was a professional actor. She got her start in the business as a background performer and has since risen to star roles in advertisements and on shows like Malcolm in the Middle and CSI.
At the age of 15, she landed a supporting part on the Nickelodeon kids’ show iCarly in 2007. Only five years later did she get her own spinoff, Sam and Cat, in which she co-starred with Ariana Grande. McCurdy claims that she lived her entire life in agony due to her battles with anorexia and substance abuse.
McCurdy’s mother Debra passed away in 2013 from breast cancer, but it took her a while to realize that her mother had been abusive and that she had never wanted to act. The child star system, though, is what allowed McCurdy’s mother and deteriorated McCurdy’s mental health. McCurdy learned early on as an actor that her body and emotions were commodities, commodities on which her family depended for financial support.
The reason McCurdy didn’t get a callback to Because of Winn Dixie was that “they’re seeking for an ethereal beauty and Jennette reads more homely,” as her agent explains early in the book. Unfortunately, her beauty prevents her from being cast as a hermaphrodite in a guest spot on Grey’s Anatomy. McCurdy learns the value of beauty standards in the child acting business.
At the age of eleven, when McCurdy is developing breasts, she experiences the onset of her anorexia. McCurdy knows that puberty is a disadvantage in her field of work; she is more employable since she is small for her age and can play younger, allowing her to stand in for younger children who are worse at taking instructions and legally entitled to longer break time. She is desperate and turns to her mother for help, who calmly introduces her to the realm of calorie restriction.
Since McCurdy’s mother abuses her and her father ignores her, she has plenty of reasons to cry whenever she wants. McCurdy calls it “the skill you desire in child acting,” and it’s this talent that has made her so sought after. McCurdy is eager to sell her mental reaction to the maltreatment, just like her body, so that she can provide for her loved ones.
McCurdy gets anorexia when she was 11 and grew breasts. McCurdy is more employable since she is small for her age and can play younger, meaning she can stand in for youngsters younger than herself who are weaker at taking instructions and legally entitled to more break time. Her mother exposes her to calorie reduction while she’s frantic about staying little.
Due to her mother’s abuse and father’s neglect, McCurdy is adept at crying on command. This is “the skill you seek in kid acting,” writes McCurdy, and makes her popular. McCurdy wants to sell her emotional reaction to trauma, like her body, to support her family.
McCurdy’s clear-eyed honesty about her child’s celebrity career is stunning. She understands that Nickelodeon kids rarely make it big and that Ariana Grande is the exception. McCurdy’s mother thinks she’ll win an Oscar, but she doesn’t. “Who’ll hire me after ten years on Nickelodeon?” she writes.
The business has left her trapped. I never went to college and have no real-world skills, so a career outside of entertainment is years away. McCurdy’s acting career is over, and she must pivot. She requests the Sam and Cat staff to allow her to direct an episode to build her resume. Someone they “can’t afford” to lose has threatened to quit if she directs.
McCurdy has escaped kid stardom. She’s in treatment for eating disorders and writes, directs, and hosts short films. In I’m Glad My Mom Died, she portrays child stardom as a system in which children are converted into walking piles of other people’s cash and demolished when they lose their value. It’s damning for both her personal horrors and societal failures.