Drew Barrymore is one of the most notorious child stars in Hollywood history, and now, she’s writing about it.

The actress appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote her new memoir, Wildflower, in which she gets candid about her troubled upbringing and her parents, John Drew Barrymore and Jaid Barrymore.

“It seems crazy now, especially as a parent, but at the time, it was a really necessary thing for me and my mom,”; the star said of being emancipated at 14 years old. “It didn’t make either of us bad people, it just was what it was.”; But how does her mom feel about her publishing the experience in a novel? “She loves it. I gave her a copy. We’ve talked about it very intimately.”;

In the book, Barrymore, 40, reflects on mending her relationship with her father before his passing in 2004.

“I just appreciated him from afar,”; she said of their estrangement, before she cared for him in hospice in the years preceding his death.

The book also has its lighter moments, like the story of how she landed her part in Steven Spielberg’s E.T.  “He was like, “You know what, you’re not right for this,'”; she recalled of her failed audition for Poltergeist. “And he’s like, “But I’m making another movie, and I think you should come audition for that.’ And I was like, “Yeah, okay, sure. I’m sure he won’t call.’ And he did, and I went in for it, and it was a movie called This Boy’s Life… which later became a different title called E.T.”;

Watch Drew Barrymore talk about her dad on The Ellen Show below: