Books

Cruel Intentions actress Selma Blair has a new memoir

Our favourite fire starter and Cruel Intentions actress has a new memoir. Selma Blair lays bares her soul in this candid, captivating, funny, and deeply felt memoir Mean Baby.

Selma Blair is known best for her dark moody uninhibited portrayals of Hellboy’s Liz Sherman and cult classic Cruel Intentions, Cecil Cadwell. It may not come as a surprise, that her deep dark beauty, comes from the hard-earned wisdom, that stems from a life of battling alcoholism, and physical and emotional trauma, which Blair bares all in her new memoir Mean Baby

Coined from the first story that Blair ever heard about herself, a snarling furry-headed mean baby, so furry her forehead had to be rubbed to find it. Blair was the perpetual brat, employing attention-seeking tactics on the daily, biting her sisters, famously lying, and getting drunk at Passover from wine at the tender age of seven. 

Selma Blair HellBoy
Credit: HellBoy

Growing up to become one of Hollywood’s sought-after actors, Blair goes on to explain that she could never quite shake periods of darkness and bouts of emotional and physical pain, which was discovered much later that her physical pain was the result of multiple sclerosis, and to cope, she drank, a lot. Not just as an adult, but all the way through school.

In an exclusive excerpt from Mean Baby shared via People Magazine, Blair talks about the beginnings of her alcoholism and how she survived it.

“The first time I got drunk it was a revelation. I always liked Passover. As I took small sips of the Manischewitz I was allowed throughout the seder a light flooded through me, filling me up with the warmth of God. But the year I was seven, when we basically had Manischewitz on tap and no one was paying attention to my consumption level, I put it together: the feeling was not God but fermentation. I thought ‘Well this is a huge disappointment, but since it turns out I can get the warmth of the Lord from a bottle, thank God there’s one right here.’ I got drunk that night. Very drunk. Eventually, I was put in my sister Katie’s bed with her. In the morning, I didn’t remember how I’d gotten there.”

The actress writes that in her early years of drinking, she did not get drunk, “just quick sips whenever my anxiety would alight. I usually barely even got tipsy. I became an expert alcoholic, adept at hiding my secret.”

Mean Baby
Credit: Little Brown

Blair’s alcohol abuse escalated in her teens and 20s. She writes about an especially difficult and traumatising incident during a college spring break trip when she was sexually assaulted after a day of binge drinking.

“I don’t know if both of them raped me. One of them definitely did,” she writes. “I made myself small and quiet and waited for it to be over. I wish I could say what happened to me that night was an anomaly, but it wasn’t. I have been raped, multiple times, because I was too drunk to say the words ‘Please. Stop.’ Only that one time was violent. I came out of each event quiet and ashamed.”

An incident years later, on a plane with her then four-year-old son prompted Blair to give up alcohol. She said she hadn’t had a drink since.

Over the course of this insightful, beautiful, and at times, disquieting memoir, Blair openly shares her battles, her addiction to alcohol, and the moments she thought about death, as well as the shocking personal trauma of sexual assaults, and the saving grace of love, friendship, and motherhood.  

Blair is not afraid to share, and she is not afraid to be real. Her hopes, fears, and dreams are just like everyone else’s, and her refreshing honesty is what makes this memoir such an achievement.

Mean Baby is slated for release on May 17, 2022.