Over the last seven decades of her career, Julie Andrews has continued to steal the hearts of people around the globe with her touching performances in classic films such as Mary Poppins (1964), The Sound of Music (1965), The Princess Diaries (2001) and Enchanted (2007).
But, many fans of the star might not know that when she was just sixteen, Julie suffered through a tragic experience that molded her dreams for the future. Moreover, singing became her outlet to escape.
After being born in 1935 to a schoolteacher father and a pianist mother, Julie grew up in Surrey, England.
Just before World War II, though, her parents ultimately divorced– with her mother, Barbara, later marrying a professional singer, Ted.
In spite of the divorce, Julie did maintain a close relationship with her father. Still, she primarily lived with her mother and stepfather– who began giving her singing lessons.
And it was not until Julie published her memoir, Home Work: Memoir of My Hollywood Years, in 2019 that the seasoned actress and singer reflected on her tumultuous childhood life.
“My mother was terribly important to me, and I know how much I yearned for her in my youth. But I don’t think I truly trusted her,” she wrote.
Both Barbara and Ted reportedly struggled with alcoholism, creating a chaotic and unpredictable home life for young Julie.
Then, when she was only nine years old, she experienced something that forever changed her: Julie’s stepfather allegedly forced her to sleep in his bed next to him.