Ex Disney Star Alyson Stoner Opens up on Dangers of Child Stardom

By Kanyi M

Famous for her on-screen time in the early 2000s, Alyson Stoner was every little girl’s dream back then. She was an actor, singer, and dancer all in one. She starred in movies and TV shows, appearing in The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Cheaper by the Dozen. She backed up for Missy Elliot and Eminem, among others.

Recently, she opened up on the heartbreaking abuse of child stars via a video essay and op-ed for People Magazine. Her words were, “My childhood is officially gone.”

Image Credits: Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock

Stoner began her journey at 6, auditioning for a role in a movie. The child actors played a little girl raped and kidnapped. “These visceral portrayals of scenarios etch themselves into my body, memory, and compound with trauma occurring in real life behind closed doors,” she wrote. It was these obnoxious scenes, among others, that led her to malnourishment from eating disorders and chronic stress at 12.

Contrary to her team’s advice, she booked herself into rehab at 17 to try and curb her overworked and to protect her own interests. Nevertheless, she ignored her team and went on to get help after her childhood trauma caught up with her. She explained at only 27 how she narrowly survived struggles and trauma from her global childhood fame.

Image Credits: Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock

Alyson is now using her status and platform to try to protect child actors and other stars from what she went through. She now advocates for getting rid of sexual harassment, preservation of child labor laws, and doing away with other “narrowing” experiences she had.