During an emotional interview on Monday’s The Howard Stern Show, the Hollywood royal said her reckless behavior as a child star caused her to be institutionalized.
“I was in a place for a year and a half called Van Nuys. And you couldn’t mess around in there. If you did, you would get thrown either in a padded room or get put in stretcher restraints, and tied up.”
She explained that there were times while she was in the facility that she got so angry, she would “go off” and then get thrown into a padded room for hours, sometimes with her hands tied behind her back.
Her mother, Jaid Barrymore, admitted her to the facility because she was a reckless child star with “too many resources.” The actress said, “I was going to clubs and not going to school and stealing my mom’s car and, you know, I was out of control.”
“I asked myself like why is this happening. And I thought, maybe you need the craziest form of structure because everything was so accessible available and screwed up in your world that maybe it’s going to take something like this for you to kickstart the rest of your life. And that didn’t come for probably about six to eight months. The first six to eight months, I was just so angry. I couldn’t see straight.”
When looking back, Barrymore said she now has a greater understanding of why her mother did what she did. But she also doesn’t let her off the hook. After going through 30 years of therapy and having children of her own, she thinks her mother created a monster, and then her mother “didn’t know what to do with the monster.”
It took those three decades of therapy for the actress to learn to forgive her mother and have any kind of relationship with her. Barrymore explained, “She probably felt like she had nowhere to turn. And I’m sure she lived with a lot of guilt for years, about creating the monster, but then I think she lived in a lot of pain that I also wouldn’t talk to her for a long time.”
Barrymore said that she and her mother do talk now, but those experiences she had, has taught her what type of mother she wants to be. She told one of her daughters once, “I’m not your friend. I’ll never be your friend; I’m your mother. And I had a mother who was a friend, and we’re not going to do that.”
Watch Drew Barrymore talk about her experiences in a psychiatric ward