The singer, who recently came out as non-binary and prefers they/them pronouns, first appeared on “Barney and Friends” and later worked on the Disney Channel show “Sonny with a Chance” and the Disney movie “Camp Rock.”
Lovato told Drew Barrymore, also a former child star, on the “4D with Demi Lovato” podcast that being the “breadwinner” in the family made the dynamic hard.
“I noticed that when I came into the spotlight at a young age, and then was the breadwinner… there wasn’t a dossier, there wasn’t a manual for my parents to read and it say, ‘Here’s what to do to raise a child star,'” Lovato explained.
The 28-year-old said when their parents would try to discipline them, the reply would be: “I pay the bills.”
“I cringe now when I think about that attitude,” Lovato said.
Demi Lovato said they’ve been the breadwinner in the family since a child. (YouTube)
Barrymore agreed that she also rebelled against being set boundaries. “I think it’s the parent-child dynamic that gets completely reversed,” she mused. “No wonder you won’t take an order from an authority figure who’s no longer an authority figure because you’ve now reduced them down with finances and responsibilities.”
The talk show host, 46, said she now realizes as a parent to two daughters how important those boundaries are.
“When you’re a parent, you try to compensate with so much love and you’re almost afraid to get into the argument,” Barrymore said. “So you let things slide and then you’re like, ‘Oh, there should’ve been a boundary in that place probably a while ago,’ but I guess I’m only realizing that now.”
Lovato, who has battled addiction issues, came clean about how reckless their behavior evolved, eventually leading to their near-fatal overdose in July 2018.
Lovato was given heroin “laced with fentanyl” and was later rushed to hospital, almost dying.
“I was left with brain damage and I still deal with the effects of that today,” Lovato shared. “I don’t drive a car because I have blind spots in my vision.”