Rosie O'Donnell Calls Daughter Chelsea's Interview 'Heartbreaking on Every Level'
By Meredith B. Kile
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Rosie O’Donnell’s estranged daughter, Chelsea, broke her silence on Tuesday, opening up about her famous mom and the allegations that she ran away from home in a tell-all interview.
"I find her not genuine a lot of the time," the 18-year-old told the Daily Mail of her adoptive mother. "When we'd go out, she was a completely different person in public than at home and I had a hard time with that. It's like two different people."
Rosie’s rep said in a statement to ET that the interview is "heartbreaking on every level." Among Chelsea’s many accusations about life with the TV star include refuting Rosie’s claims that her daughter ran away from home in August, just a week before her 18th birthday.
Instead, Chelsea claims that Rosie kicked her out, then lied about Chelsea being missing and mentally ill. A spokeswoman for the star said in a statement at the time that "Chelsea, like millions of people, lives with mental illness."
"I think she did that because people started asking questions and she didn't want to seem like this bad parent that had kicked her daughter out," Chelsea told the publication. "Putting out there that I am mentally ill was really hurtful. People think I'm this crazy person and as I've said, I have depression and bad anxiety – but it's been something that's gotten a lot better. But these were personal things and I didn't want anyone to know them about me."
"I wouldn't say I'm mentally ill," Chelsea continued, telling the Daily Mail that she’s been struggling with depression and anxiety since age 12. "I would say lots of people struggle with what I have."
Last month, Chelsea successfully petitioned a New Jersey court to remove The Nicole Law provision against Steve Sheerer, the 26-year-old man she met on Tinder and was found with on Aug. 18 after leaving Rosie’s home.
"She appealed to the judge to remove the no contact order due to the fact that she is an adult now," Ocean County Prosecutor's Office press officer, Al Della Fave, told ET at the time. "Her birthday has passed and she felt the subject would pose no harm to her."
"She wants to be able to have a continued relationship with Mr. Sheerer," Sheerer's attorney, Robert Tarver, told ET.
Chelsea is currently living with Sheerer and his family in Barnegat Township, New Jersey, after leaving home after her 18th birthday to spend time with her birth mother, Deanna Micoley.
"Chelsea made a decision when she turned 18 that she wanted to go to her birth mother," Rosie’s spokesperson, Cindi Berger, said in a statement to ET at the time. "This was her choice."
According to Chelsea, however, Rosie reportedly didn’t leave her much of a choice.
"She had two of my bags packed with clothes," Chelsea said of returning home after police found her with Sheerer. "Literally 10 minutes after the police had dropped me off at the house, I got in a car and went to a friend's house."