Amanda Bynes 'Ashamed' and Sorry for Her Antics During 'Dark' Days of Drug Abuse
Paper Magazine

Almost four years sober now, the 'Easy A' star admits drugs changed her perception of things and she made 'foolish' mistake when she was high.

AceShowbiz - Amanda Bynes is making headlines by gracing the cover of Paper magazine for its annual "Break the Internet" issue, years after staying out of the spotlight. Looking healthier and chic in a plaid jacket paired with jeans, the 32-year-old talks about her history of drug abuse and all the madness that came with it.

Amanda, who says she didn't start partying until she was 25, reveals she started smoking weed at 16. "I didn't get addicted [then] and I wasn't abusing it. And I wasn't going out and partying or making a fool of myself ... yet," she recalls. But then she took more dangerous drugs, like molly and ecstasy. She also tried cocaine, but claims that she only used it three times and didn't like it.

The former Nickelodeon star admits she was hooked on Adderall after learning that women used it to keep themselves thin. "The Amanda Show" alum, who didn't like the way she looked as a boy in 2006's "She's the Man" and became increasingly fixated on her appearance when she was cast in 2007's "Hairspray", shares, "[I was] reading an article in a magazine that [called Adderall] 'the new skinny pill' and they were talking about how women were taking it to stay thin. I was like, 'Well, I have to get my hands on that.' "

In order to get a prescription for the drugs, Amanda says she visited a psychiatrist and faked the symptoms of ADD. But Adderall began to affect her work when she was filming "Hall Pass" in 2010. "When I was doing 'Hall Pass', I remember being in the trailer and I used to chew the Adderall tablets because I thought they made me [higher that way]," she recalls. "I remember chewing on a bunch of them and literally being scatterbrained and not being able to focus on my lines. Or memorize them, for that matter."

While "literally tripping out," Amanda says she looked herself on the monitor and thought her arm "looked so fat." Not liking what she saw, the actress rushed off the set and decided to quit the movie. Insisting she wasn't fired, Amanda says her decision was a "mixture of being so high that I couldn't remember my lines and not liking my appearance." She confesses, "It was definitely completely unprofessional of me to walk off and leave them stranded when they'd spent so much money on a set and crew and camera equipment and everything."

A few months later, she attended the screening of "Easy A" and didn't like her acting and appearance in the movie. "I literally couldn't stand my appearance in that movie and I didn't like my performance," she says. "I was high on marijuana when I saw that but for some reason it really started to affect me."

"I don't know if it was a drug-induced psychosis or what, but it affected my brain in a different way than it affects other people. It absolutely changed my perception of things," she goes on sharing how the drugs affected her. She adds, "I was absolutely convinced I needed to stop acting after seeing it."

Amanda announced she retired from acting on Twitter in 2010. Admitting that she was "high" and made a "foolish" mistake, she now realizes, "If I was going to retire [the right way], I should've done it in a press statement-but I did it on Twitter."

After her "stupid" decision to quit acting, Amanda felt she had "no purpose in life" and lost her way. She spent her days getting "stoned" and began "hanging out with a seedier crowd" and isolated herself from loved ones. "I got really into my drug usage," she says, "and it became a really dark, sad world for me."

While high, she would tweet outlandish things, which she now regrets. "I'm really ashamed and embarrassed with the things I said. I can't turn back time but if I could, I would," she says. "And I'm so sorry to whoever I hurt and whoever I lied about because it truly eats away at me. It makes me feel so horrible and sick to my stomach and sad. Everything I worked my whole life to achieve, I kind of ruined it all through Twitter..."

The former child star says her strange behavior "was drug-induced and whenever I got off of [drugs], I was always back to normal." Still, she felt it was hurtful to have people judge her because of her public meltdowns.

Now almost four years sober, Amanda says, "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."

She also shares advice to those who are still struggling with substance abuse, "... be really careful because drugs can really take a hold of your life. Everybody is different, obviously, but for me, the mixture of marijuana and whatever other drugs and sometimes drinking really messed up my brain."

"There are gateway drugs-and thankfully I never did heroin or meth or anything like that-but certain things that you think are harmless, they may actually affect you in a more harmful way," she continues. "Be really, really careful because you could lose it all and ruin your entire life like I did."

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