The reality of Stephanie Pratt's past has never been shown on reality TV.
In her recently published memoir, Made in Reality: From the Hills of L.A. to London's Made in Chelsea, Stephanie wrote about how she developed a crystal meth addiction as a teen. "I was 14 or 15 [when I first smoked it]," she said (via The Daily Mail). "I was on the extreme level and addiction developed instantly. [I smoked] probably four times before school, then at snack...probably 12 or 13 times a day." She also began using cocaine, as the drug made her feel "rebellious and grown-up."
Stephanie claimed her parents turned a blind eye to her addiction issues. "I didn't care about anything. I could live or die, I didn't care," she explained in the book, released Aug. 13. "I had nothing to get out of bed for. Nothing was exciting."
In 2006, Stephanie worked as a production assistant on ABC's hit series Lost in Hawaii. During that time, she was arrested for attempting to steal $4,000 worth of designer clothes from Neiman Marcus while high on drugs. "I woke up handcuffed to a hospital bed," she wrote of the incident. "When I landed back in L.A., Mom took me back home and I went upstairs to my old bedroom and I felt so much shame."
Stephanie went to rehab in Texas after the arrest. In 2007, Stephanie made her debut on MTV's The Hills. (Her older brother, Spencer Pratt, joined in Season 2.)
Honolulu Police Department
That, too, proved to be problematic. Being on camera was tough for Stephanie, who felt insecure around co-stars Lauren Conrad, Heidi Montag and Audrina Patridge. She developed an eating disorder, and by 2009, she weighed 105 lbs. "I lost about six pounds in two weeks, but bulimia made my face very puffy, so I freaked out and began going on crazy little diets," she said. "I'd only eat Tic Tacs."
Stephanie first opened up about her eating battle with bulimia in a 2009 Us Weekly cover story. After watching a scene she had filmed with Conrad for The Hills, she recalled, "I was horrified. I remember saying, 'I can't believe how huge I look walking over to Lauren.'" Pratt explained that while "producers never put pressure on us to lose weight," she still felt embarrassed to shoot scenes with "skinny girls."
Shortly after the issue hit stands, Stephanie clarified her comments to MTV. "The Hills did not make me bulimic. It was my own issues with self-esteem, and if anything, my life on The Hills has only helped me get healthy, 'cause I know how lucky I am to have this job and to have the chance to be a role model," she said. By sharing her story, she said she hoped to help parents recognize warning signs in their own children. "My mom and dad were very hands-on parents," she explained. "They were never on vacations or anything like that, and I did everything right under their noses—I did drugs, I threw up my food—in the same house as them. And for them to never see that, my mom was just like, 'What did I do wrong?'"
"If [my mom] had known the signs of what to look for, I could have been helped a lot earlier," she said. "I'm so thankful I got professional help and I'm healthy now, but I just really wanted to do this to help all of those moms to see those signs in their daughters. [Bulimia is] such an ugly, ugly word. I wish I could have danced around it and said I had eating issues, but this isn't an article for me to shine."
Stephanie added, "You are as healthy as your secrets."