The Amanda Bynes story


Amanda Bynes attending a fashion show during New York fashion week in 2009. (Flickr/The Heart Truth)

Jolie Abadi , Jewish Studies Editor

Many people might associate the name Amanda Bynes with the innocent looking star of many teenage movies and tv shows, who later on in her career, experienced psychiatric disturbances. She started out as an actress on Nickelodeon, starring in her own show, “The Amanda Show” (1999-2002) which put her on the map. She also starred in movies such as “What a Girl Wants” (2003), “She’s The Man” (2006) and “Hairspray” (2007). In 2010, Bynes impulsively announced her retirement from acting on Twitter, even though she continued to try to land roles afterward. Things spiralled out of control from there.

She started to act out arbitrarily, which interfered with her role of Paige in the movie “Hall Pass,” which she later left. She was replaced by actress, Alexandra Daddario. In 2012, Bynes got into seven car accidents and was charged with a DUI. Bynes also demonstrated her alarming attitude on Twitter, when she tweeted using vulgar language and continuing sexual, inappropriate connotations. One of Bynes’ tweets implied that the famous singer, Rihanna, was responsible for being a victim of domestic violence. Bynes was also arrested for throwing a bong out of her apartment window and was then put into an involuntary psychiatric hold. She went to rehab and was diagnosed with bipolar and manic-depressive disorders. Bynes continued to post peculiar pictures of herself on social media until she deleted her Twitter account in March of 2015.

These behaviors are similar to those of Miley Cyrus and Britney Spears, despite their struggles, both stars remain popular.  Bynes’, Cyrus’ and Spears’ breakdowns were handled in similar ways. Paparazzi became obsessed with following them around and seeing what crazy things one of the stars would do next. All three stars’ behavior later was linked to substance abuse.

The story of Amanda Bynes can be used as a learning tool for all teenagers and people alike. Bynes started out as a young actress, perfect to the outside world. She was known for being a good girl because of her classic teenage roles in films. Dan Schneider, a producer of many Nickelodeon shows, stated “I’ve seen kids in her position experiment with drugs and be too promiscuous, but Amanda has avoided all that. My wife, who knows her, says she’s almost like Marcia Brady in that she’s so clean-cut and wholesome.” Little did he know that a few years later, Bynes would be the girl that experimented with drugs. Even the people one would never expect to take drugs may end up doing so.

People, specifically those in high school, should take Amanda Bynes’s story to heart. No matter what lifestyle one has, whether it be an actress or a student, experimenting with drugs can be dangerous, not only for your physical health, but your emotional stability as well. Bynes admitted to abusing Adderall, MDMA, ecstasy and cocaine. Her drug abuse lead to depression and anxiety, which is what landed her in jail and on psychiatric hold. She is using her experience to help others, stating, “My advice to anyone who is struggling with substance abuse would be to be really careful because drugs can really take a hold of your life, everybody is different, obviously, but for me, the mixture of marijuana and whatever other drugs and sometimes drinking really messed up my brain. It really made me a completely different person. I actually am a nice person. I would never feel, say or do any of the things that I did and said to the people I hurt on Twitter.”

Presently, Bynes has started to turn her life around. She was just featured in the cover of PAPER magazine’s Break the Internet campaign, She claims to be four years sober and wants to get back into acting and start up a career in the fashion industry, after finishing her degrees at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising.

Overall, Bynes went from teen star to having a drug-addiction with mental issues and back again. Former fans are shocked at the fact that Bynes has turned her life around and is an upstanding member of society.