Lindsey Shaw Reveals She Was Fired From “Pretty Little Liars” for Substance Abuse: “It Was So Bad”

Getty / Michael Tullberg

Lindsey Shaw is opening up about why her character was written out of the later seasons of “Pretty Little Liars.”

On a July 5 episode of her podcast “Ned’s Declassified Podcast Survival Guide,” the star reflected on her time on “Pretty Little Liars,” where she played Emily (Shay Mitchell)’s girlfriend Paige. Apparently, she said, her struggle with body image and substance use affected her during her time on the show.

“It was so bad. I got called into ‘Pretty Little Liars”s creator’s [I. Marlene King] office. And she was just like, ‘So we’re gonna let you go,'” Shaw said. “She was like, ‘It’s not because of your acting, but do you have anybody to talk to?’ And I was like, ‘No,’ you know? She’s like, ‘Well, find somebody,’ and ‘We have to let you go now.'”

Shaw, who also played Jennifer “Moze” Mosely on “Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide,” went on to share a bit more about the challenges she was facing during her time on “Pretty Little Liars,” saying that she used drugs for a “whole season” before being let go. “When I had my problem and I was in between working on stuff, I would never have to address my relationship with food because it was like, I could always just go get more Adderall,” she said. “It was really an embarrassing thing. I didn’t look good too skinny and then when I started to put the weight back on, I couldn’t handle being too heavy.”

Related: Lucy Hale Reveals the “Pretty Little Liars” Cast Had a Mini Reunion “For a Good Cause”

At one point, things got so bad that her costars stepped in to help. Mitchell “was bringing me protein powder . . . and she was like, ‘Girl,'” Shaw recalled. “Yeah, it was awful.”

While Shaw’s character was written out of the show in season five, she did briefly reappear in the final season when her character and Emily decided to give their relationship another shot. “It was really sweet, because they brought me back in season 7,” Shaw said. “It was so lovely of that writing team to just see that relationship [between Paige and Emily] and that character out. But it was rough. They did me so right bringing me back for season 7 and just letting me say goodbye,” she added. “I will never forget that.”

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