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‘That ’70s Show’ star Laura Prepon says her mother taught her to be bulimic

The New York Daily News - 3/26/2020

Laura Prepon is sharing her complicated history with an eating disorder.

“My mother taught me bulimia. It started when I was 15 and lasted until my late twenties,” the “That ’70s Show” star, 40, told People in a new interview, promoting her upcoming book, “You & I, as Mothers: A Raw and Honest Guide to Motherhood."

The “Orange Is the New Black" actress said that at 15 years old, she was “a healthy athletic kid” and viewed herself as a “strong, confident woman,” but losing weight became a “shared project” and “bonding thing” with her mother when Prepon attended a modeling agency’s open casting and was instantly told to drop 25 pounds.

With her mother weighing her daily and taking her measurements, the actress, who stands 5 feet, 10 inches tall, shrunk to 105 pounds.

“It became a compulsion that would completely debilitate me,” Prepon said, adding that her mother was bulimic in college.

"After she lost weight, she met my father. So to her, being thin equaled success,” Prepon told the outlet. “I think she was trying to help me in her own way.”

Prepon’s mother has since been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, which the “October Road” actress said “put me in confrontation with our past and began the path to recovery."

As her mother’s condition is advanced, Prepon says, “I want those moments when she is present to be good.”

Now a mom herself, Prepon says a “real conversation about motherhood” means discussing “what’s really going on, the stresses, the anxieties, how we were mothered.”

She and her husband, “Hell or High Water” star Ben Foster, share 3-year-old Ella and a son born last month.


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