It’s a bit of a disservice to describe Jonathan Lipnicki as “the kid from the Jerry Maguire movie” (and the Stuart Little movies), as he now did more movies as an adult than he did as a child. But it’s still where most people remember him from.
However, it was not all good back then – in a brave Instagram post, and an interview, Jonathan opened his heart this week about the bullying he suffered from as a child-star.
Jerry Maguire, the hit film starring Tom Cruise, was released in 1996, when Jonathan was just 6-years-old.
Since then Jonathan grew up into a major hunk – but last week, he shared some of the pains from his early career.
“As a kid/teen I was made fun of relentlessly by some people who are now even my friends on Facebook”, he wrote on Instagram.
“I was told I was a has-been and would never book a job again. I was made to feel like garbage every day of middle school to the point where I had a panic attack every night beore school, because I wondered how I would get through the next day.”
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Im sharing a little of my experience. It gives me anxiety being this open, but being bullied is a universal problem. I am not a victim, but rather empowered because I was able to turn to my art. I am grateful for the amazing life I have and I hope I can pass on that it DOES get better. As much as it is easier said than done, overcoming being bullied is a reality and I hope this resonates with all of you ❤️❤️❤️❤️
In an interview with TooFab, Jonathan also opened up about being in treatment for a long time, due to anxiety and depression issues. He also elaborated on the bullying he suffered.
“I didn’t go a day without going home and being upset. I didn’t go a day without being called some form of gay slur, or a hateful slur pretty much every day of middle school.”
Following the interview, Jonathan posted on Instagram again, explaining why he’s choosing to speak up now – he wants to help others in similar situations.
“I’m not a victim, I’m a survivor and kids will hopefully see that they can be too. My confidence is built on the fact that I won’t quit.”
Jonathan’s latest indie movie, Pitching Tents, is due out later this month.