Ricky Schroder’s daughter says his child stardom made her life difficult.
The actor was a megastar in the ’80s, when there were about three TV stations and Silver Spoons was everything (“the Ricker!”). While his career calmed down from the screaming-girls phase, the actor’s 22-year-old daughter, Cambrie Schroder, says his fame is something that affected their whole family, including her and the relationship they have today, which is strained.
“I grew up in a very abnormal situation,” the model, who appeared on Lifetime’s reality show Growing Up Supermodel, dished to the Daily Mail. “People might think it’s so beautiful and glamorous, but actors aren’t most of the time fully functioning humans.”
She continued: “From my experience, a lot of actors need a lot of attention, and so I felt like my emotional needs growing up were not fully understood or met. I felt isolated a lot of my life because other kids my age weren’t in the same situation. Everyone wanted to meet my dad. Everyone wanted to know my dad. It wasn’t about the kids or my mom. Everyone wanted to be friends with us to meet my dad. It’s not necessarily that he wanted that, but that’s just what came with his career.”
Making it worse, little Cambrie looked just like little Ricky, who shot to stardom after appearing in 1979’s The Champ before he was 10.
“My whole life people told me that I looked exactly like my dad and would always compare me to him,” said Cambrie, who is one of the 48-year-old actor’s four children with Andrea Schroder, whom he split from in 2016. “He had such immense amounts of success that I always felt like I needed to accomplish what he had accomplished. I had really high expectations of myself, and I always wanted to be something so great. I just felt paralyzed with expectation and pressure on myself, and my way to deal with it was to be alone and isolated.”
It led to bouts of depression and anxiety, including “days and weeks” she couldn’t get out of bed. Cambrie said that even when she had success — like when she and her younger sister, Faith, also a model, landed a Forever 21 ad campaign with a billboard in NYC’s Times Square — she had a hard time feeling good about it. She said that ultimately working out and channeling her energy into her fitness brand, Fitness With Cambrie, made her feel better inside and out. “My escape became fitness,” she said, but it’s still something she’s coping with.
Being a model brings its own challenges. “If you don’t have a lot of followers on Instagram, it’s almost like you have no value, like your value is translated to how many followers you have,” she said of the industry, noting that when she goes to a casting, agencies record how many social media followers each person has. She’s well aware that sexy photos get more follows — and it’s something she’s clashed with her dad about to the point where she blocked him on Instagram after he posted comments telling her to cover up. (“It’s better if he just doesn’t see it,” she said.)
“I wouldn’t say I have a good relationship with my dad,” Cambrie said. “I would say that I have to be the bigger person. I have to set boundaries and I have to kind of guide the relationship to what I need. You can’t blame him. He was a child actor in crazy situations and didn’t develop most normal coping mechanisms and normal social skills. He’s not normal. Of course, I love him. I will always love him. I see so much of him in me, but I don’t necessarily agree with his life choices and it’s hard.”
And Schroder split with Andrea in 2016 after 24 years of marriage severed the family, Cambrie said. While her father, who went on to appear in N.Y.P.D. Blue and 24, remained at the family’s home outside L.A. with the couple’s sons (Holden, 27, and Luke, 25), Andrea and Faith, 17, moved to West Hollywood to help the teen’s modeling career. (All three Schroder women were featured on Growing Up Supermodel.)
“I feel for a lot of people whose families get divorced,” the celebrity offspring said, “because I now realize how much pain it causes.”
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