Amanda Bynes' Downward Spiral: Uncle Says ‘She Needs Help’ (EXCLUSIVE)
A family member is speaking out about Amanda Bynes' apparent downward spiral -- and blaming the actress' decline on alcohol.
“She needs to stop drinking and driving,” her uncle, Ronald Bynes, told Celebuzz in an exclusive interview.
“She needs help.”
But that help seemingly won't come from Amanda's parents, who Ronald said are in "in the dark" about their daughter's problems.
“[Her father] doesn’t want to talk about her and often changes the subject,” Ronald said, when asked about how his brother, Rick Bynes, is coping with the drama.
“The problem is there’s no correspondence [between Amanda and her parents]. I don’t even think they know what’s going on with her."
The uncle added, "They’re very upset about her recent problems, but they’re in the dark."
Those problems have been well-documented: Bynes was charged with driving under the influence after she crashed into a police cruiser on April 6 in West Hollywood; she's also facing two charges of misdemeanor hit-and-run for incidents that occurred on April 10 and Aug. 4.
Cops tried to take the 26-year-old off the road on August 25 by suspending her license, but even that didn't stop her from getting behind the wheel. On Sunday, her car was impounded after police caught her driving; she'd been pulled over by Burbank Airport Police in Burbank, Calif. just after 8 AM.
According to Ronald, the Bynes family wasn't aware that Amanda may be abusing alcohol -- a point made in April, when Rick told People magazine that his daughter “was not drunk” the night of her DUI arrest and insisted that she “doesn’t drink.”
“I never knew she drank," said Ronald, who admitted he hasn't had much contact with his niece over the years.
"As far as her dad knew, she never drank before. I don’t know if she did it privately.”
It's a shocking contrast to the glory days when Amanda starred on her own Nickelodeon sketch comedy show, The Amanda Show -- and enjoyed a close relationship with her parents, according to Ronald.
“Her dad used to take her to Nickelodeon and to auditions when she was younger," he added.
But somehow, that relationship became strained.
"After all these years, something has happened,” he said. "I think she has some sort of resentment."
Today, Amanda's behavior is not befitting of the niece Ronald once knew, he said.
"Before this, this wasn’t her personality," he added. "She was a clean-cut girl. She was brought up in a good family. It's a bad situation.”
And sadly, DUIs and arrest records are the least of Ronald's concerns.
Said Amanda's uncle: “I’m just worried something worse may happen to her.”