Maureen McCormick As Marcia Brady: TV Perfection, Problems IRL

By | October 30, 2017

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Maureen McCormick on 'The Brady Bunch' (1969-74), and in a publicity photo for 'The Brady Bunch Variety Hour' (1976-77). Source: IMDB; ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images

Blonde bombshell Maureen McCormick of Brady Bunch fame is known to a generation of TV viewers as Marcia Brady, the eldest daughter in the Brady family. Every family, especially a blended one with six children, should have been so lucky to have children who minded their manners, did their chores and learned from their mistakes; all with the loving guidance of two perfect parents.  But the real life Maureen McCormick bore little resemblance to Marcia Brady. The TV babe was often miffed about typical high school problems, and there was little doubt on the show that she was exceptionally pretty. McCormick dealt with darker stuff -- she had some serious issues that even being Marcia Brady couldn't fix.

Marcia was portrayed as the quintessential all-American girl. Marcia Brady spewed unwavering, pristine morals and values. Every teenaged girl in America wanted to be Marcia! Off camera, though, all bets were off! Maureen McCormick, in real life, was nowhere close to being as confident as Marcia.

Maureen McCormick Suffered From Depression And An Eating Disorder

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McCormick, who was 14 years old when The Brady Bunch first aired in 1969, harbored plenty of secrets that would have sent her television parents over the edge! While her on-stage image was of the girl next door, she secretly battled insecurities and poor body image, which led to depression, an eating disorder and drug addiction. She was so caught up in how the world perceived her character that she didn’t want anyone to know that she was dying inside. Maureen McCormick finally got the courage to face her fears head on but not before she spiraled out of control in self-destructive mode. She found the courage to tell her private story in a book, Maureen McCormick: Here’s the Story. In her own words: 

As a teenager, I had no idea that few people are everything they present to the outside world. Yet there I was, hiding the reality of my life behind the unreal perfection of Marcia Brady. ... No one suspected the fear that gnawed at me.