‘Little House on the Prairie’ Star Melissa Gilbert Said the ‘Teen Magazines’ Portrayed Her Completely Inaccurately—Here’s What They Got Wrong

Melissa Gilbert rose to fame at just 9 years old when she was cast as Laura Ingalls Toilet on the Moor. When Gilbert became a teenager, teenage magazines loved the time Beat Tiger and Beat Teen, represented as an elegant young star with a lively social and romantic life. But that could not be further from the truth.

Melissa Gilbert standing on a bench
Melissa Gilbert | LIFE photo collection through Getty Images

How teenage magazines Melissa Gilbert got it wrong

In Gilbert’s memory, Prairie story, she writes about being a teenager while taking part in a famous TV show. Teen magazines got the time completely wrong.

“Don’t forget about the glam life of the young Hollywood star featured in teenage magazines,” Gilbert wrote. “(What turns Melissa? How can you be your friend? Get a date with Melissa!) I spent my nights lying on the floor of my bedroom, listening through my head to him Janis Ian’s very sad song ‘Aig 17.’ I played that song over and over, crying as I sang the words to myself, thinking they were written about me. ”

The valentines I never knew
Charades youth Friday night
It was spent on a more beautiful man
At seventeen I learned the truth

Janis Ian, “Aig 17”

Looking back, Gilbert admits that she was “melodramatic. ”

“I was afraid that my grandfather’s hooks and kisses at the weekend were the only attention I would ever get from a man,” she wrote. “I was planning to spend my life playing solitaire. No, it was worse than that. I saw myself alone, patiently attracted at solitaire. ”

When Gilbert told her husband about her sad teenager, he said: “Oh, honey, you were not patient. Everyone loved you. ”

“Yeah,” she replied, “everyone but me.”

Melissa Gilbert ‘s first teenage crush

Gilbert would not call her teenager a “crazy boy.” She was a little behind her friends when it came to experience.

“Hearing my friends start fooling around about their make-up sessions with boys shocked me with an almost catastrophic shock that no one ever wanted to come to me,” she wrote.

But it was pretty much crushed.

“After watching the film Waldo Big Pepper, I developed pressure on Robert Redford, ”she wrote. “He passed Batman ‘s Adam West as the man I wanted to marry. ”

On her locker, she hung pictures of Redford, John Travolta, David Cassidy, Shaun Cassidy, Parker Stevenson, and Bruce Boxleitner (the man she would marry in the future).

Gilbert also developed a push for another young Paramount lottery star, Scott Baio from Happy days. But her feelings were not reversed.

Little did she know, Rob Lowe was watching her. The two ran through much of the ’80s, and in 1986 Lowe proposed. But the couple broke a year later.

Today, Gilbert is married to actor Timothy Busfield.

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