While “Roseanne” continues to defy expectations with its massive ratings, one of the show’s young stars admits that her own success at a young age has led her down a dark path she’s hoping to exit.
Emma Kenney, who plays Harris, the teenage daughter of Darlene (Sara Gilbert) in the sitcom revival, opens up in the latest issue of In Touch to reveal she’s seeking treatment after “running with a really fast crowd.”
“I’m going to be seeking treatment for my battles,” she tells In Touch, without detailing what type of treatment she’ll be undergoing. “I’m going to work through it. I’m going to get help and make better choices.”
The 18-year-old actress, who also portrays youngest Gallagher daughter Debbie on “Shameless”, has been acting professionally since age 10, and admits to the magazine that she has encountered the same type of pitfalls many child stars encounter over the years.
“I was running with a really fast crowd. I was being naive and very immature, and I was doing things I should not be doing because it was illegal and I’m not 21,” she explains. “It wasn’t healthy, and it was making me feel even worse — anxious and depressed. It was just a slippery slope that I did not want to go down. And I knew that I needed to stop it.”
As Kenney explains, “I just didn’t know how to deal with stress, so I would have an occasional wild night. I would go out to clubs and bars with older friends in Hollywood.”
In treatment, she says she’ll “work on finding other ways to cope with boredom, find hobbies and better learn how to deal with stress. I just think I need a mental sanity break and a break from the Hollywood scene.”
According to Kenney, she wanted to come forward and share her own struggles in hopes that she can help other teens experiencing similar issues.
“I just want to send a message to my fans saying that it’s OK to admit that you need help, and it doesn’t make you weak,” she says. “I know I’m making the right choice by going to treatment, and I’m going to come out the other side the right Emma, the true Emma that I’ve always been.”
Kenney had more to say about her treatment in a statement she gave to ET on Wednesday.
“I want to be the healthiest, best Emma that I can be, and I know that by going to treatment that’s what’s going to happen, and I’m going to continue on that positive road,” said Kenney in her statement. “I just want to send a message to my fans saying that it’s OK to admit that you need help, and it doesn’t make you weak. I’m going to come out on the other side, the True Emma that I’ve always been.”
You can read the full interview with Kenney in the latest issue of In Touch, on newsstands now.