Ariel Winter Hints at Childhood Hardships
Actress Ariel Winter found it tough to grow up in the spotlight, especially without a safe household and support system.
The 18-year-old Modern Family star became an emancipated minor last year after a long court case, following claims her mother Chrystal was emotionally and physically abusive. This means Ariel is now her own entity and in control of her own business affairs, living arrangements and money.
Before this, her older sister Shanelle became her guardian in 2012, and Ariel has praised her sibling for all the help she's given over the years.
"She's been the best part of my life," Ariel gushed to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres. "She really is my best friend. She's the most important thing to me. She's been there for me through absolutely everything. And I just love her so much. I count on her more than anything."
"It's most definitely hard to grow up in the industry, but just (to) grow up in any instance without a mother from a very young age. And it has been very sad for me, but at the same time it's been much better for me emotionally and physically to be on my own and have a better, safer household and support system. I don't really talk about the reason that I don't speak to my mother. It's kind of been publicised, but the reason I don't really share that is because I want to give her the respect that she didn't give to me publicly."
Earlier this month Ariel revealed on Good Morning America that she hadn't spoken to her mum in three and a half years. She's remained tight-lipped on the exact details of why she decided to become emancipated, but she did open up when it came to Chrystal going on Dr. Phil a couple of years ago.
Ariel felt as though her mother was simply trying to make herself look better so paid little attention to the appearance.
"At the end of the day, it was what I needed to do," she added. "The people who supported me are the people that matter in my life and that's what I just kind of had to train myself to remember – that the people that love me and support me, their opinions matter."