Tasha Smith is known today as one of the most beloved and respected Black actresses in Hollywood. However, prior to her rise to fame, the Empire star had a troubling life that involved her indulging in cocaine at quite a young age.
During her appearance on TV One's Uncensored, the actress opened up about being the product of a 15-year-old single mother in Camden, New Jersey. While she stressed that her hometown was filled with beautiful memories, she mentioned that it came with its fair share of demons.
"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."
While the rough city exposed her to some almost life-altering elements, Smith was adamant that "it was also a place that gave me a lot of resilience, perseverance and hustle."
The actress thankfully managed to dodge that dark path, eventually moving to Los Angeles at 18 where she landed roles in Tyler Perry projects and is now directing and running TSAW, her own actors workshop.
"We all have situations to overcome, but you don't quit," she said. "You keep trying."
We're glad Smith found her happy ending in this story.
Tune into Uncensored on Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on TV One.
(Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)