Portia de Rossi Opens Up about Childhood Eating Disorder: 'I Didn't Eat for 10 Days'

The actress recalled binging and purging to prepare for a fashion show at just 12 years old


Portia de Rossi didn’t have a typical childhood. Instead, she recalls memories of castings, catwalks and a major battle with an eating disorder.

The actress and model, 42, opened up in a clip from online docu-series It Got Better, which debuted on Entertainment Tonight, about her struggle with bulimia when she was 12 years old and working as a fashion model.

In the preview, the Scandal actress reminisced about a time she starved herself for days before a show after her agents told her to diet.

“I didn’t eat for 10 days before then,” de Rossi said in the video. “I’m up on this catwalk, and I’m a little kid and posing and trying to be sexy and strutting around and all the other models are making fun of my bushy eyebrows.”

De Rossi went on to describe how the bullying and pressure caused her to spiral into a period of binging and purging.

“When I got in the car after that event and just opened up a bag of my favorite candy and just put my whole head in it and I think, ‘Sh–, what have I done? I just undid two weeks worth of dieting.’ So then I vomit,” she said.

RELATED VIDEO: Portia de Rossi: ‘I Dress Like a Teenager’

The former Arrested Development actress got emotional on camera as she flashbacked to those days, which she described as “horrible.”

From the producers of Web Therapy and the It Gets Better project, It Got Better shares LGBT celebrities’ personal stories about overcoming struggle. Season 2 of the web program features de Rossi, Rosie O’Donnell, Nate Berkus and more.

De Rossi’s episode airs Wednesday.

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