The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Child star addresses ‘Full House’

Janie Boschma

“How rude!”

Most in the audience were waiting to hear it, and eventually did when Jodie Sweetin, former child star, talked about her difficulties adjusting to life after eight years of playing the loveable Stephanie Tanner on the hit show “Full House.”

At Monday night’s Forum, Sweetin described her rise and fall from child star to drug and alcohol addict to a crowded Zorn Arena.

She discussed her childhood, noting how she couldn’t just be a normal 8-year-old and that many people didn’t know how to act around her. She said people constantly sang the “Full House” theme song to her and said, “How rude,” her catchphrase from the show.

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Sweetin said she always wanted to be like the other kids at school and fit in, but people treated her differently.

“People weren’t sure if they wanted to be my best friend or if they hated me,” she said.

When “Full House” ended, Sweetin said she began her freshman year of high school and faced a “quarter-life crisis.” She described high school as a big culture shock, and said in order to fit in she began experimenting with drugs and alcohol.

“I felt like I didn’t know how to relate,” she said. “The minute I took that first drink I felt okay.”

When she began college, Sweetin started drinking and using much more heavily. Sweetin said after her first semester of college she had a 0.9 grade point average, didn’t have many friends and was severely depressed. After starting her second semester, she decided she needed to move home.

“It was the first time I realized I had a problem,” she said. “I thought, ‘I need to move home or I don’t think I’ll make it. I won’t be alive.'”

She said her life changed dramatically for a few years, at least on the outside, but then she started hanging out with a group of people who used methamphetamines.

“They seemed like fairly normal people,” she said, “They weren’t scary like on the commercials.”

Sweetin said within the first month of using crystal meth, she was doing it all day, every day for the next two-and-a-half years. Her family had no idea what was going on, she said, until one night when it went a little too far and she ended up in the hospital with a drug overdose.

Senior Sara Schroth attended the Forum and said she was very surprised that Sweetin was able to hide her addiction from her family and husband so well.

Senior Megan Allen said she was also shocked to hear that Sweetin didn’t have many physical side effects from the methamphetamines.

Sweetin said she was terrified of what was going to come after her overdose, but knew she needed a change, and admitted herself into a rehab program. Sweetin, who is now pregnant, then began sharing her story at colleges around the United States.

Sweetin said throughout her addiction, she thought there was no way out, but she had learned that it’s never too late to make a different choice.

“Each day I wake up I get to make the choice to live my life drug-free,” she said.

After the Forum, Sweetin stayed to sign autographs and get pictures taken with fans. Schroth said she got both and had fun doing so.

Allen said she was a little confused about Sweetin’s message.

“I don’t think her message was very clear. She made it sound like recovering from a drug addiction is a piece of cake after going to rehab,” Allen said. “I was surprised she didn’t talk more about her recovery, she was pretty vague.”

Schroth said she thought it was good that Sweetin is using her past to help students who may have similar problems, but thought she could have related to students more.

“I think she intended a good message,” Schroth said. “But I feel like she never really related it to our lives . she never said ‘I hope you don’t make the same mistakes I did.”

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Child star addresses ‘Full House’