Miley Cyrus Says ‘Hannah Montana’ Pressure Caused Body Image Issues And Anxiety Attacks

The show that launched Miley Cyrus’s career, Hannah Montana, wasn’t such a happy environment behind the scenes, according to the singer. Cyrus has spoken before about the demands she was under to play the role and has done so again in a brutally honest interview with Marie Claire for the cover of their September issue. Suffering from anxiety attacks and body image issues, Miley Cyrus says it all stems from the pressures she faced while starring in Hannah Montana.

It might be difficult to believe Miley Cyrus has body image issues from the toilet selfie she recently shared to the video promotion for the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards in which Cyrus struts on a treadmill wearing a barely-there, skintight swimsuit and chunky platform shoes while sticking her tongue out. Two years ago, Miley Cyrus infamously twerked up against singer Robin Thicke with a giant foam finger at the MTV VMAs.

However, it isn’t any secret there’s a ton of pressure on young girls in Hollywood, and Miley Cyrus is one of many child stars who have experienced the negative side of the limelight. The question is, are Miley’s outrageous antics a product of her environment, or are they in protest of it?

In the Marie Claire interview, Miley discusses what it was like for her to take on the role of Hannah Montana, even comparing the experience to the show Toddlers & Tiaras. Imagine being told what Miley was when she was so young–your natural looks aren’t enough.

“From the time I was 11, it was, ‘You’re a pop star! That means you have to be blonde, and you have to have long hair, and you have to put on some glittery tight thing.’ Meanwhile, I’m this fragile little girl playing a 16-year-old in a wig and a ton of makeup. It was like Toddlers & Tiaras. I had f**king flippers.”

Miley Cyrus admits she suffered from anxiety attacks moments before taping episodes of Hannah Montana. Miley worked long hours as a young child and had a difficult time keeping up with the pace required of her.

“Every morning, I was getting coffee jammed down my throat to wake me up. I just had to keep going, be tough, be strong. I would have anxiety attacks. I’d get hot flashes, feel like I was about to pass up or throw up. It would happen a lot before shows, and I’d have to cancel. Then the anxiety started coming from anxiety. I would be with my friends, thinking, I should be having so much fun.”

Cyrus also describes feeling lost among everything she was told about who she should be and what she should look like. Miley says she didn’t know who she was when not on the show.

“I was told for so long what a girl is supposed to be from being on that show. I was made to look like someone that I wasn’t, which probably caused some body dysmorphia because I had been made pretty every day for so long, and then when I wasn’t on that show, it was like, who the f**k am I?”

For more of the interview with Miley Cyrus, the September issue of Marie Claire hits newsstands August 18.

Don’t miss Miley Cyrus when she hosts the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards on August 30 at 9 p.m. EST.

[Photo by Mike Coppola / Getty Images]

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