What You Don't Know About Chrissy Metz

Trigger Warning: The following article includes allegations of child abuse.

Chrissy Metz is a multi-talented performer best known for her role as Kate Pearson on "This is Us." And while millions of fans have tuned in to follow Kate's journey on the NBC drama, not as many are familiar with the fascinating and at times harrowing journey for Metz. From growing up dirt poor in Gainesville, Florida (via Glamour) to following her deepest passion for performing in Hollywood, Metz's personal history has been quite the roller coaster. Yet, throughout all the ups and downs, the Floridian actor has always managed to remain true to herself.

Furthermore, Metz uses her famous platform to advocate for causes she cares deeply about. This includes, but is not limited to, the practice of self-love and body positivity. She wisely once told her fans on her Instagram, "It doesn't matter where you come from, what your scale currently says or what society has taught you to believe. You are entitled to greatness."

Keep reading to find out more about the brilliant "This is Us" star.

Chrissy Metz grew up dirt-poor

Like many other talented celebs, Chrissy Metz has quite the rags to riches story. The "American Horror Story" actor may be living in a 3.5 million dollar mansion right now in Bell Canyon, California. But things weren't always so lavish and luxurious for Metz. In fact, growing up in Gainesville, Florida, she experienced poverty. It got to the point where some family members would end up going to bed with empty stomachs. "There were nights my mom wouldn't eat dinner," Metz revealed to Glamour Magazine in 2017. "She'd be like, 'Oh, I'm not hungry.'" Metz continued, "I knew she was giving up food to make sure we could eat, but when you're nine or 10 years old, you can't help. It was devastating."

Interestingly enough, Metz emphasizes that because food was so hard to come by due to their struggles with poverty, providing meals was a sign of affection. "In retrospect, I think that's why food equals love in my family," she told Glamour, adding, "As I got older, that turned into, "Oh, I'm happy — let's celebrate and eat. I'm sad? Let me eat my feelings."

Fortunately, though, growing up in such harrowing conditions gave Metz a work ethic that she otherwise might not have developed had she been handed everything. As a teen, she took on a job working at McDonald's. As she explained to Yahoo!'s "My Three Cents," she worked there for a few years, saving up her money for a new pair of shoes.

She had an abusive relationship with her father figures

Kate Pearson has one of the most enviable father/daughter relationships with Jack Pearson on "This is Us." But in the real world, Chrissy Metz wasn't as fortunate to have such a bond. When it comes to her biological father, the actor says that she never formed a connection with him. Eventually, he abandoned the family when she was eight years old, following her parents' split. "I never really knew my dad," she told Glamour.

Years later, her mother ended up getting married for the second time to a man called Trigger. And while Metz's biological father was totally absent from her life, Trigger offered a lot of attention to her. Unfortunately, it was unwanted attention. According to Metz, her stepfather abused her because of her weight. "It was as if he hated to have to even look at me," she wrote in her memoir, "This is Me." "My body seemed to offend him."

"He never punched my face. Just my body, the thing that offended him so much," Metz continued. "He shoved me, slapped me, punched my arm, and yanked my wrist. He would hit me if he thought I looked at him wrong." According to Metz, her stepfather apologized in a heartfelt letter once she moved to Los Angeles. Entertainment Tonight reveals that Metz and Trigger are on much better terms now. "We have a relationship now," says Metz. "I do love him and I do care about him."

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

Chrissy Metz is deeply passionate about singing

On the beloved NBC drama, Kate Pearson is an aspiring singer. But did you know that Chrissy Metz is an incredibly talented musician as well? She has even released several songs, including her hit "Girl Go" in 2021 and "Feel Good (Dave Audre Remix)" that same year (via Apple Music.) In an interview with Fox Soul, she talked about her aspirations while growing up of wanting desperately to make it as a musician. 

"Music was my first love and it was something that I grew up with and around," she says. "And it was sort of pushed to the wayside by my manager ... She sort of didn't encourage the music side," she says. Metz continues, saying her manager at the time encouraged her to pursue acting instead, specifically comedic roles. And although she loves acting, singing will always hold a special place in her heart. Check out Metz's gorgeous singing chops on her Youtube channel.

She worked as a preschool teacher

In "This is Us," Kate Pearson discovers she has a deep passion for teaching children. Art has imitated life in this case because Chrissy Metz also adores teaching kids. In fact, before she got her big break in the entertainment business, Metz worked as a preschool teacher. What's more, before making it big, she had planned on dedicating her life to teaching young pupils. "I was teaching preschool while at community college in Gainesville, and I was going to do early childhood education in Florida," she spilled to Glamour

Yet her manager at the time had so much faith in Metz's performing talents, she convinced her to pursue a career in Hollywood. "My manager was like, 'Get your butt out of this town!'" she revealed. "I was scared and nervous to take the plunge, but I did. Right before I turned 22, I moved out." 

She told Us Weekly in 2018 that although she loves kids, she isn't planning on having any of her own — at least any time soon. She shared, "I love children, and they are the funniest, most magnificent creatures. But I can't even keep a succulent alive... I just feel like a baby myself. I need to nurture myself first before I could do that to another human being."

She worked as a talent agent for Ariana Grande and Dove Cameron

Believe it or not, before Chrissy Metz was a big-time actor, she was a talent agent for some of the hottest stars to ever come out of the entertainment industry. In fact, the "This is Us" star even worked as an agent for mega-stars such as Ariana Grande and Dove Cameron (via "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon"). According to Metz, she sought out talents who she considered "underdogs." And although she has nothing but nice things to say about Grande and Cameron, she admits she had a twinge of jealousy for the fact that they were living their dreams as performers while she was still struggling to make it.

"It was really hard," she said in an interview with Fox Soul. "I always joke and say it was like watching your boyfriend take another woman out every day, but like to your favorite restaurant, at your favorite table, having your favorite dessert. And I was like, 'This is hard.' I was grateful for my experience, and I'm happy for those people, but I was like, 'I want to be doing that.'"

Still, as she explained to NPR, getting the chance to work as an agent gave her insights about the entertainment industry that she would have never known about had she just been a talent. The way Metz sees it, everything happens for a reason.  

Chrissy Metz found love online more than once

These days, it's not uncommon for people to meet their soulmates through dating apps. In fact, according to a 2019 statistic, 22 percent of newlyweds have met through apps like Bumble, Tinder, and Hinge. And, as it turns out, celebrities are no exception to this rule. 

This is especially so for the "This is Us" actor Chrissy Metz, who met not one, but two of her lovers through the internet. According to USA Today, Metz met her first husband online, despite being reluctant to do so at first. And although they split in 2015 due to "irreconcilable differences," they still remain on great terms to this day. "I am still working on my goal of being a better ex-wife than I was wife," she notes in her memoir "This is Me." "Marty [Eaden] is such a great guy, and I am grateful that we had our time together." 

In 2020, Metz was ready to start a new chapter. She decided to get back on the dating apps, and that was where she found her current beau, Bradley, whom she has been with since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. On "The Ellen Show," Metz explained that she met him on Bumble. And, as she reveals in the interview, if she can survive the difficult pandemic era with her man, she can get through anything with him. How cute!

Her acting career didn't kick off till she was 30 years old

It's no secret that Hollywood has a big problem with ageism, especially with regard to women in the entertainment industry. And although 30 is still young, by Hollywood standards, it's considered quite late in the game to get started. But Metz was able to defy the standards and make her way up the ladder. Yet before making it in Hollywood like she'd always dreamed of, Metz experienced anxiety over the assumption that she'd never achieve her aspirations.

"I was doing something I knew ultimately in my heart wasn't meant for me — I was being an agent. My body was starting to tell my mind, 'You're unhappy, something's wrong.' And then my mind started telling my body, 'Yeah, something is wrong,'" she told VeryWellMind.

In fact, when she was 30, Metz experienced a terrible panic attack while at the movies with her friends and family. It was so bad, she thought she would die in the movie theater. "[Aspiring] actor who never made it dies in the ArcLight. This is literally what's running through my head," she said. Fortunately, Metz was able to push through all the doubt, and she ended up landing some exciting roles on television. But her biggest break was, unsurprisingly, "This is Us," which saved her from being broke. In fact, according to Glamour, the actor reveals that she only had 81 cents in her bank account while auditioning.

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

She was allegedly supposed to lose weight as part of a contract deal for This is Us

According to Chrissy Metz in a 2016 interview with TV Line, it was a part of her contract for "This is Us" to lose weight throughout the course of the show. Her character, Kate, was originally supposed to go on a weight loss journey that would go along with her character arc. Explaining further, she said, "In our contract, it did state that that would be a part of it, to lose the weight in the trajectory of the character as she comes to find herself." She added, "That was a win-win for me. Because it's one thing to try to do it on your own. But as human beings, it's an ego thing: We're more likely to do something for someone else."

As time went on, though, the show runners apparently decided to scrap that idea. Even more, when Metz was asked about the contract deal again several years later, she claimed that it wasn't ever a part of the contract at all. In an interview with Tampa Bay Times, she said that people should focus on her acting role and the awards/nominations she receives, rather than hyper-focusing on her weight. "Health is not just physical," she says. "It's also mental and emotional health, and I make decisions based upon that."

Chrissy Metz had a bully on set

In Chrissy Metz's memoir "This is Me," she details the unfortunate bullying she experienced throughout her life. Whether it was by her peers at school or her abusive stepfather, the "This is Us" star is no stranger to being tormented, as noted by CBS News. So when she was bullied on set during an acting gig by her co-star, Metz was, fortunately, able to handle the situation in an incredibly mature way. Although it obviously hurt to be treated so unkindly, Metz did her best not to retaliate with cruelty. Instead of hurting her co-star back or letting her bully see her cry, Metz decided to approach the situation with kindness and empathy. 

As she writes in her memoir, her bully, who she refers to as X, would fat shame Metz while she was clearly in earshot. "I will never believe that it is weakness to retaliate with kindness," she writes in her book. "Our culture has become an arms race of nastiness, and I refuse to do it." She then goes on to quote Gandhi, saying, "Nobody can hurt me without my permission."

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

What is the star's net worth?

Chrissy Metz has detailed how tough it was to grow up in poverty throughout her childhood (via Glamour). According to Radar Online, it became so hard for Metz's mother to pay the bills that they would often go without electricity. "Now the lights wouldn't turn on," she writes in her memoir. "I went to turn on the TV. Nothing. Our electricity was shut off." Instead of spending that time in the dark, Metz writes in her book that she would find comfort at the supermarket while pretending to shop around for food. When they could no longer afford their tiny home, they had to move into a trailer park.

But long gone are the days where Metz had to worry about whether she'd have food on her plate or electricity in the house. Now, according to Celebrity Net Worth, the "This is Us" star has a net worth of $7 million dollars. The site also reports that she received a whopping $250 million dollars per episode on "This is Us." Wow! Clearly, she has come a long way from having less than a dollar to her name during the audition process for the Dan Fogelman series.

Knowing how challenging it can be to get by without having much money, Metz uses her hefty salary to give back as much as she can. Look To The Stars reports that the "American Horror Story" alum has donated to several charities and organizations, including PETA, Dress For Success, and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

Metz struggles with impostor syndrome

It's safe to say that "This is Us" would not be what it is without Chrissy Metz. Her portrayal of Kate Pearson adds a sense of je ne sais quoi to the series that would cease to exist had they cast anyone else. But despite her wonderful acting chops, Metz struggles with impostor syndrome in Hollywood. Sometimes, the actor finds that she negatively compares herself to other stars in Hollywood. "I don't feel as funny," she tells Very Well Mind. "I don't feel as witty and smart and educated ... I still feel like I'm not good enough and I still feel like the new girl in school. Like everybody's been working for 15-20 years." Specifically, the celeb admits that she feels inferior at times in comparison to her seasoned castmates on "This is Us."

But even though she will occasionally experience doubt, it's clear that she has a deep love for her cast mates on the series, who seem as much like a family to her in real life as on the show. Just one look at her Instagram Page proves that the talented actor is incredibly close with all the other stars on the NBC series. And really, can the "This is Us" cast possibly get any more adorable?

Her character Kate Pearson is based on this real-life person

Kate Pearson has a fascinating journey on "This is Us," but did you know that her character is partially based on an actual person? According to Glamour, she is based in part by series creator Dan Fogelman's sister. "Kate is loosely based off of Dan's sister and their relationship, where he was very successful as a writer and she was struggling with some issues," the website notes. Who knew?

And according to the site, despite Metz and Dan's sister not meeting in real life (yet), they are actually following each other on Facebook! But even though Kate Pearson is based on someone else, Metz can fully find herself identifying with the character she plays. She explained in an interview with Very Well Mind that she feels like she and Kate are essentially the same person. "I am her; she is me," she reveals to the mag. "[We] always put ourselves into our roles. And I think Kate is so much of who I used to be. And so now that she's becoming this very empowered woman who's speaking up for herself, I, in turn, find myself doing that in different ways."

She is an advocate for body positivity

Chrissy Metz has always been a strong advocate for the body positivity movement. Although we have fortunately seen a lot more representation with diverse body types in recent years on our TV screens, this has not always been the case. And when Metz just started out in the business, it was extremely uncommon to see someone of her size on TV. Fortunately, according to Metz, landing a role on the hit NBC show has helped viewers with similar body types feel like they are being seen and represented. 

Although Metz doesn't think we should be defined by our bodies, as she notes in an interview with People, she is honored that she can help others along the way. "When women are encouraged and feel supported because I'm on a platform to kind of just give them the courage to be themselves, it's so exciting," she told People. "Because we're not taught that. So by a way of art, we're all coming together." 

In an interview with Yahoo! News, Metz says she is thrilled that we are finally coming to a place in our society where it feels as though all body sizes are being perceived as beautiful. She asks, "Why does size equate beauty?"

What is her self-care routine?

In recent years, there has been much more of a discourse on matters surrounding mental health. Because of this, self-care has become a widely accepted form of maintaining and preserving one's emotional and physical well-being. Sometimes, celebrities offer up their own self-care routines, including Prince Harry and Melania Trump. But what is it that Chrissy Metz does as a form of active self-care? While some celebs might indulge in expensive spa days or vacations in the Bahamas as an act of self care, Metz likes to keep it down to earth and simple. 

"I love to take a bath at the end of the day," she spills to Very Well Mind. "I also spoke to a therapist who always would say, at least let the water run down your back and it's like washing the day away. And so, I always have to do that before I go to bed, whether it's a shower or a bath."

In a separate interview with People for The Beautiful Issue of 2020, she talked more about what helps her unwind. "For me, it's my gratitude list, prayer, and meditation," she said, adding, "and taking my vitamins and drinking my lemon water. I know it sounds silly, but it sets the tone for me and allows the space to really be present throughout the day."

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.