‘Big Brother’ Alum Talks About Trauma, Depression & Addiction Recovery

The cast of 'Big Brother 19'

CBS The cast of 'Big Brother 19'

One “Big Brother” contestant recently opened up about struggling with addiction, depression and childhood trauma, and how she was finally able to break out of the cycle. Find out how and why Christmas Abbott is doing so much better and how everything has changed for her recently.


Abbott Said She’s ‘Unpacking’ Previously Undiscovered Trauma


VideoVideo related to ‘big brother’ alum talks about trauma, depression & addiction recovery2021-05-25T15:22:00-04:00

In a recent interview on Zach Rance’s podcast, “Big Brother 19” and “All-Star” contestant Christmas Abbott spoke candidly about her past and how hard she has been working to overcome things — some of which she wasn’t even fully aware of until recently.

“I’ve just been doing … a lot of personal work with my therapist and unpacking a lot of this unknown and undiscovered trauma I have from my childhood,” said Abbott, adding, “I kept running in the same cycle and kept self-sabotaging and couldn’t really deeply connect with somebody and I had all these blockades and I’m like — I’m tired of fighting myself.”

She went on to say that she “was in such a deep depression for a while” and she could see how these past events were impacting her “day-to-day behaviors” and that “there has to be a better way to live.”

Abbott also recognized that her addiction “transferred” from “drugs to working out to work,” and she has to be hyper vigilant not to let it take over.

“I constantly have to say OK, is this my enthusiasm or is this my addiction leading the way?” said Abbott, adding, “If you just stop and check in with yourself, you don’t allow that ignorance or unawareness to continue and that’s when it’s hard for people because they’re like I don’t want to believe what’s really happening versus I want to believe what I’m telling myself.”


Abbott Said It’s Been a ‘Very Hard Journey’

It isn’t like everything magically got better for her overnight. She said that “just because you learn” something doesn’t mean you can immediately apply it to your life.

“It’s just been a really big, long journey for me and it felt like upstream for a long time and now, honestly, everything that I’ve been praying for, everything that I’ve been working towards … is literally falling into place and I have to contribute that to God and the last few years of this really very hard journey that had to build to the lesson,” said Abbott.

She also said that she is “so blessed” to have the life that she has, but she wasn’t “grateful for it” and wasn’t “living it” the way she should have been until she did all of this work on herself — because she “is the common denominator” in her problems.


Abbott Holds Herself ‘Ruthlessly Accountable’ Now

Part of applying the work she has done to her everyday life is that she has to hold herself “ruthlessly accountable” for her actions.

“I’m going to hold myself accountable. I’m going to look at myself in the mirror and know that today I showed up or today I didn’t show up. All these white lies that you tell yourself, they are like sprinkling toxicity on your beautiful garden because they tell you that it’s OK to skip this or not tell all of that truth and it really affects your foundation. So honestly just being ruthlessly accountable for myself,” said Abbott.

She also makes time for “personal self-care” and she also sets boundaries where she is only focusing on her son, Loyal.

“From four to eight, I have my son every day. I don’t do any work, I don’t answer work calls, it’s me and him, or me, him, and his grandma, or his dad comes over and we have dinner. It’s just my family time, it’s undisrupted. I don’t care who you are, I’m not taking a call during that time. What I’m doing for him is he knows he’s a priority in that he has my undivided attention,” said Abbott.

She also said she has been discovering recent new passions and that she encourages everyone to seek out “the next thing that’s gonna tickle your soul.”

“I tell people there’s no such thing as failure unless you quit. Everything else, as long as you learn a lesson or it shows you something, is successful failures. I will gladly fail every freakin’ day if I love what I’m doing.”

Abbott has also been dating fellow “Big Brother All-Star” Memphis Garrett since they got off the show in November 2020. They recently attended the wedding of fellow all-star Nicole Franzel and “Big Brother” alum Victor Arroyo, and they spend a lot of time together with their two boys (Garrett also has a son from a previous relationship). Garrett thinks that they will probably get engaged sometime in the future.

“Big Brother” season 23 premieres Wednesday, July 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.

READ NEXT: ‘Big Brother’s’ Will Kirby Teases Season 23 Return


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