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Amanda Bynes Opens Up About Drug Abuse, Retiring From Acting

Amanda Bynes

Actress Amanda Bynes told PAPER magazine that after years away from the cameras, she wants to re-enter the business slowly but surely.

She admitted that drug use is what began the chain reaction of sinking her acting career. Marijuana turned into molly, which turned into ecstasy, which turned into Adderall — which she took so much of in order to stay thin, she couldn’t remember her lines.

Though the actress hopes to design a clothing line — she is currently enrolled at Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising to receive her Associate’s of Art degree in Merchandise Product Development — Bynes confirmed that she wants to “get back into acting first” after enduring years of drug abuse.

Bynes reflected on when she first started using drugs, recalling smoking marijuana at the age of 16: “Even though everyone thought I was the ‘good girl,’ I did smoke marijuana from that point on.” She also explained that despite smoking, she “didn’t get addicted” and “wasn’t abusing it.”

Bynes revealed that she later progressed to trying harder drugs such as MDMA, cocaine and ecstasy: “[I tried] cocaine three times but I never got high from cocaine. I never liked it. It was never my drug of choice.” It wasn’t until she tried Adderall that the actress said it became a frequent routine: “I definitely abused Adderall.”

“I was high on marijuana when I saw that but for some reason it really started to affect me. I don’t know if it was a drug-induced psychosis or what, but it affected my brain in a different way than it affects other people. It absolutely changed my perception of things,” she said.

It all culminated in a moment when she sent the infamous tweet announcing her retirement from acting.

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“I saw it and I was convinced that I should never be on camera again and I officially retired on Twitter, which was, you know, also stupid,” she said. “If I was going to retire [the right way], I should’ve done it in a press statement — but I did it on Twitter. Real classy! But, you know, I was high and I was like, ‘You know what? I am so over this’ so I just did it. But it was really foolish and I see that now.”

Bynes is aware that her behavior sparked a negative reaction from the public, which she said led people to “diagnose” her. She is now four years sober, and credits her parents with “really helping me get back on track.”

Happy to confirm that her days of experimenting “are long over,” Bynes said that she is finally “back to normal.”

The actress said she was excited for the future and a return to acting: “I have no fear of the future. I’ve been through the worst and came out the other end and survived it, so I just feel like it’s only up from here.”