Every once in a while, a ghost of Disney Channel past will pop up to offer an update on their life post-Mouse House, sending a certain segment of the internet (read: Millennials) into an absolute tailspin.
This week, it was Even Stevens and Kim Possible star Christy Carlson Romano, who penned a powerful essay for Teen Vogue in which she recounted the years since starring as Ren Stevens and the titular animated heroine, respectively, and the challenges that she silently weathered unbeknownst to the rest of us.
"I have never been perfect or pulled together as my reputation or the success of my young adulthood might suggest," she confessed. "During a period of time in my life, I grappled with depression, drinking, and more, desperate to find fixes for how I felt."
For 10 years, she admitted, she struggled with her "relationships, alcohol usage, and career path," despite multiple appearances on Broadway, authoring a novel, and writing music. It wasn't until she returned to school and met now-husband Brendan Rooney that she found "a companionship that would take a mallet to the tape that had been screaming in my head all those years."
The couple married in December 2013 and now have two daughters.
Christy's about to launch the next phase of her career—a YouTube series, Christy's Kitchen Throwback, kicks off in June—and she does so knowing who she is. "Anyone reading this, or anyone who decides to go into the entertainment business (including my daughters, should that time come), know this: having a clear understanding of your personal value helps to positively shape everything you do," she concluded. "If you don't, if you aren't careful, you just might end up getting what everyone else wishes for but wondering what you want yourself."
Reading Christy's powerful admission—and reveling in its happy ending—had us reminiscing about the other Disney Channel stars who didn't go on to have the careers like the Shias and the Zacs, the Mileys and the Hilarys, the Selenas and the Demis of the world. So let's check in on the rest of the cable network's former stars, shall we?