Tracey Gold is a poster girl for the child star traumatized by Hollywood. The difference between her and so many others though, is that she was able to turn around and make a full recovery, now advocating for others going through the same. In addition to her work as a speaker on eating disorders and mental health, what is the Growing Pains star up to today?
Born in New York City right before the summer of 1969, Tracey took to acting at just the age of seven, appearing in multiple ads and commercials by the time she took to television in 1976. She would appear in just one episode of the miniseries Captains and Kings that year, before following up with an episode in the acclaimed miniseries Roots in 1977.
Tracey would continue in film and television throughout the rest of the seventies, starring in the classic horror miniseries The Dark Secret of Harvest Home. She would end up in a canceled series called Shirley, but her initial almost decade in the business mostly saw her on a run between guest starring spots and small movie roles.
Initially, Tracey didn’t cut it with her Growing Pains audition, with the part going to another actress. Unfortunately, due to the bloodthirsty nature of the test audiences, the other actress was thrown aside and Tracey was brought in to play the Carol Seaver audiences would remember. Though the show would come with its fair share of baggage for Tracey in the long run.
Tracey’s weight became a running joke throughout the show with jabs at the appearance of her character. Despite having the world’s perfect punching bag right there in the form of Kirk Cameron, the writers instead so relentlessly bullied Tracey Gold that she developed an eating disorder on top of her already strict Hollywood star diet.
The actress would struggle for years with anorexia and bulimia, even being told by doctors she had done irreparable damage and be unable to have children.
While fighting her own demons Tracey Gold still had to make a living and hopped between television movies and smaller guest roles across shows like Diagnosis Murder and Touched by an Angel throughout the nineties to stay afloat.
She would eventually break the hold her eating disorder had as well in the decade, helping to open her up to more roles while advocating for younger actresses to be safe from what she went through.
Growing Out of It
Tracey started the new millennium off with a Growing Pains reunion movie for Wonderful World of Disney before hitting the nostalgia circuit hard.
Growing Pains had become a hit in syndication reruns, and Tracey took the opportunity to jump into reality television to bank on the nostalgia. She would take part in various reality contests like The Mole and Wife Swap. Television in the 2000s was a savage wasteland.
Tracey managed to find love at least, marrying husband Roby Marshall, himself not a stranger to trauma and the spotlight, in 1994.
The two would go on to have four children together in the coming years. Unfortunately, all wouldn’t necessarily be well as in 2004 Tracey was arrested for a DUI after flipping their SUV with her husband and three of her sons in the car.
She would go through sentencing and end up with community service and probation, but from there her career mostly consisted of nostalgic appearances and whatever B-movies came her way.
She would mostly stick to reality television for the latter half of the 2000s and early into the 2010s, taking part in TV Guide promotions and even hitting the celebrity rock bottom of an episode for My Hollywood Ghost Story.
She would have a guest spot on Melissa and Joey in 2012 which is the last show of note she appeared in, though I’ve never actually met anyone that watched that and refuse to believe it’s a real show.
Where is Tracey Gold Now?
She would settle down in the 2010s, stepping mostly away from the acting world and instead taking time with her family.
She still hosts game shows across the Game Show Network as well as taking part in various specials on the eighties and nineties nostalgia, which were massive back in the 2000s and seem to have outstayed their welcome until today.
Tracey has also appeared on various talk shows and panel discussions like The View and Good Morning America to promote herself and the projects she’s working on.
Tracey makes it a point to show up at cons and festivals, going to. great lengths to reach out and bond with the fans who kept her going despite the hardships she faced as a child actor in the eighties and nineties.
Otherwise, she still advocates for young stars and women facing eating disorders, as well as the dangers of being in proximity to Kirk Cameron. Most recently, she also won a 90s Celebrity edition of Worst Cooks in America.