Child stars have a hard time trying to live a normal life in the spotlight. This was a challenge that Maureen McCormick faced when playing Marcia Brady on The Brady Bunch.
Maureen McCormick played the eldest daughter, Marcia Brady, of The Brady Bunch. The popular television show gave everyone familiar goals. In the role of the eldest daughter, Marcia Brady, was actress Maureen McCormick. Although her character was a ray of sunshine with a ‘you can’t beat me’ attitude, Maureen was facing a tough battle in her personal life. Here is the tragic real-life story of Maureen McCormick.
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Maureen may have been part of the perfect television family, but hers was falling apart. Maureen opened up to Newsweek about her family’s problems. ‘In the early ’70s, my older brother was struggling with heroin addiction and my father was having an affair, which devastated my family,’ admitted the actress.
But that wasn’t even what really destroyed Maureen. In her memoir, the actress painfully admits that her father is abusive. Her home life was totally different from that of the television family she was a part of. This overwhelmed her terribly. Maureen writes: ‘As a teenager, I had no idea that few people are all they present to the outside world,’ she wrote. ‘Yet there I was, hiding the reality of my life behind Marcia Brady’s unreal perfection… No one suspected the fear that plagued me, even as I lent my voice to the Bradys chorus singing, ‘It’s a sunny day . ”
Maureen revealed to Meredith Vieira today about how she feared she had contracted syphilis. Maureen’s grandmother lost her life to the disease, and the actress’ mother, Irene, contracted the disease in the womb. ‘I thought I had syphilis growing my whole life. I thought I too would go crazy and end up in a madhouse. It was awful,” Maureen admitted.
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Maureen lost her mother to kidney cancer in 2004. The actress revealed to TV Guide that her mother’s death pushed her over the edge. ‘My mom was sick for a few years and I never lost anyone really close to me until she died,’ she told the interviewer. This led her down a path of self-destruction.
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In her 2009 memoir, Maureen spoke candidly about her battle with drugs following the end of The Brady Bunch. ‘I have a very addictive personality. I know that now,’ said the People actress . Maureen discovered drugs through a boyfriend. Her addiction got so bad that she decided to go to therapy relying heavily on her faith.
“I was hooked for the next five years and would do anything to get my hands on the drug,” adds Maureen. Her cocaine addiction got so out of control that she started switching from sex to drugs. At a low point, Maureen let a man film her naked at the Playboy Mansion in exchange for drugs. ‘All I cared about was having sex and using drugs. I had sex to get drugs,’ the actress admitted.
Even though her battle with hard drugs was behind her, Maureen found herself facing another battle. Maureen suffered from anxiety and paranoia in her youth. But after being diagnosed with depression, the actress started relying on Prozac, which again caused a huge rift in her life. But luckily, Maureen was able to kick the habit just before appearing on the reality show ‘I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here’ in 2015.
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Maureen has spoken openly about how her weight started to affect her when she was a teenager. For almost 10 years, the actress suffered from weight problems. Speaking to People magazine, Maureen explained how she started purging to control her weight. “I was with some girls, we had a gallon of ice cream and someone mentioned how we could eat everything and not get fat,” she said. ‘It looked ideal. Once I started [the purging], it was hard to stop. ‘ Maureen’s on-screen roles in ‘The Love Boat’ and ‘Fantasy Island’ helped little. ‘I had to be in a bathing suit. It made me so embarrassed,” she said.
Maureen had always struggled with the fact that she wasn’t the innocent Marcia Brady she portrayed on television. But as she learned to deal with her reality, she began to commit to inspiring others who had faced the same battles she had before. ‘If you have an addictive personality, it’s a disease and nothing to be ashamed of,’ Maureen explained . ‘So many people today are still incredibly embarrassed to talk about it like it’s a weakness… That’s what we’re all here on Earth for, right? To help each other and to talk about our experiences, because that’s how we all heal and get better. ‘