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48th NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals

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Tasha Smith may appear to be the epitome of stability and focus, but the Empire actress says that wasn’t always the case. Instead, when she was young, she claims she frequently dabbled in cocaine.

On the March 29 episode of TV One’s Uncensored, the actress opened up about being a teenage single mother in Camden, NJ and being sucked into a life of drugs after dealing with a lifetime of abuse.

“As beautiful as Camden was, it was a place where I dealt with sexual, physical abuse, a place where I did all kinds of drugs,” she said. “I was doing cocaine at the age of 14. I really could have been a crackhead today.”

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While she faced a lot of adversity, the 48-year-old said even back then as a 15-year-old she recognized that the city gave her a sense of resilience as she hustled her way out.

“[Camden] was also a place that gave me a lot of resilience, perseverance and hustle.”

Eventually she moved to Los Angeles and began working as a comedian and actress, getting tapped by Tyler Perry to play in films such as Why Did I Get Married.

“We all have situations to overcome, but you don’t quit,” she said. “You keep trying.”

Tune in to the Uncensored episode on Sunday at 10 p.m. ET on TV One.

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Tasha Smith On Surviving Sexual Abuse & Being A Teenage Mother: ‘I Could Have Been A Crackhead Today’  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com

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