The former child star—best known as Willis Jackson on Diff’rent Strokes—shares the shocking but inspirational details of his struggles with addiction, brushes with the law, and fierce fight to carve a path through the darkness and find his true identity.
For Todd Bridges early stardom was no protection from painful childhood events that paved the road to his own personal hell. One of the first African-American child actors on shows like Little House on the Prairie, The Waltons, and Roots, Bridges burst to the national forefront on the hit sitcom Diff’rent Strokes as the subject of the popular catchphrase, "What’chu Talkin About Willis?" When the show ended, Bridges was overwhelmed by the off-camera traumas he had faced. Turning to drugs as an escape, he soon lost control.
Now, for the first time, Bridges opens up about his life before and after Diff’rent Strokes: the incredible reversals of fortune brought on by fame and the precipitous—and very public—descent that followed; the persecution from police; the drug addiction that nearly consumed him; the criminal charges that almost earned him a life sentence; and his successful legal defense led by Johnnie Cochran. Through it all, Bridges never relented in his quest to fight his way back from the abyss, establish his own identity—separate from Willis Jackson—and offer his ordeal as a positive example for those struggling to overcome similar challenges. His triumphant story of recovery and redemption is recounted here as well.
Todd Bridges has lived a life of remarkable twists and turns—from the greatest heights to the lowest lows imaginable. In this shocking but ultimately hopeful memoir, he proves that what he was really talking about was survival.
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This book made me sad and I know what he going through and I love this book todd bridges and god bless you!
Read this book originally to better understand my own brother as he went through his recovery from drugs and alcohol. Just as he was determined to get through it right this time, I was determined to get a better grasp on addiction. I had some significant "aha" moments related to sobriety but on the "lighter" side Bridges is an excellent storyteller. He is right where God intended him to be!
His story is honest, fascinating, tragic and beautiful all the same. What is most amazing is the way he owns up to his own faults, 100%, in a way that those of us who aren't drug addicts would have a hard time owning up to.
Great read in general, and a great read for recovering addicts and the loved ones of recovering addicts.
I purchased this book after seeing Todd Bridges on Oprah's Where are the now show. I felt bad for him and interested in what he might have to share. The book is easy to read and just almost seems like him talking and writing it down as he goes. There are a few odd things that don't quite make sense in some ways (like him saying he and Gary Coleman didn't speak at Dana Plato's funeral and later giving it as an example of how they liked to see each other at occasions. I wanted to be upset with him for his treatment of women or for throwing things away when he had so much, I couldn't believe he had enough money to last so long on drugs, but I found that I was interested in the story and he does not sugar coat anything. I felt bad for him, just as I have always felt bad for the other costars who had difficulties and are now dead. Todd is so fortunate to be alive and he seems to know that. His family, especially his mother, are true family, through thick and thin. Good job Todd! I hope that you continue on your road to recovery and thanks for the story, may you find peace.