Young kids watching the rising stars on Disney Channel see the “normal” teenagers as role models. What the public does not realize is that the pressure that these young stars are put under is excessive and drives them to want to break their image of perfection.
Recently, a former Disney Channel star, Joe Jonas, from the distinguished band the Jonas Brothers, spoke out about all of the pressure that he and his brothers felt when working for Disney and where it has gotten him today. Jonas tells Vulture magazine, “Being a part of a company like [Disney] comes with certain expectations, Not overtly, but there [is] a subtle vibe.” In the article, Jonas talks about the image that Disney built for the Jonas Brothers; he mentions that it made him and his brothers want to break out and not be the cheesy pop stars that society expected them to be. “Being a part of the Disney thing for so long will make you not want to be this perfect little puppet forever. Eventually, I hit a limit and thought, Screw all this, I’m just going to show people who I am,” says Joe.
A more prominent example of the way this pressure affects the young stars is the infamous Miley Cyrus and the image she has created for herself after parting ways from the Disney Industry. She seems to be showing the world who she “really” is, but it is very easy to see that this former Disney star is simply trying to shed the “good girl” image that the industry previously created for her. A little rebellion is a trademark for teenagers trying to figure themselves out; however, the pressure of a teenager growing up outside of the public eye is not as extreme as a teenager growing up in the industry. Therefore, the methods of rebellion differ from each other. Sophomore Roberto Ruiz states, “The amount of pressure that [Disney stars] are put under by Hollywood Records and Disney is absurd. A human can’t function under that kind of pressure; something has to give.”
Stars such as Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears, both former Disney employees, have proven that the rebellion by a teen with immense pressure is not the same sort of rebellion as the one of an everyday teen. Drug abuse, eating disorders, extreme depression, and very controversial behavior are all seem to stem from this unnecessary pressure to be perfect. Eventually, these stars hit rock bottom, harming themselves and the fans that see no flaws in their behavior, and try to emulate it. There is a pattern; although some not as publicly as others, all former Disney stars suffer some type of distress from the pressure that the industry puts on them.