Not long before before Hailee Steinfeld became an Oscar-nominated actress at the age of 14, the True Grit star was tormented by her classmates at Colina Middle School in Thousand Oaks, Calif. Home-schooled since 2008, the 16-year-old actress opens up about her rough tween years in the June issue of Glamour.
"Bullying is something I went through, from third to sixth grade, when I got pulled out [of school]. I still go through it," the Romeo and Juliet actress admits. She now works with The Trevor Project to mentor LGBT teens who are considering suicide. "If I can be the person who says, 'Trust me when I tell you it will be OK,' then I will be that person."
Steinfeld adds that she hopes to help bullies realize the error of their ways. "Often bullies are taking something [personal] out on others," she explains. "If they use that energy to make someone smile, we can save so many people in the long run."
With five movies in production, Steinfeld may not seem like a typical teenager. Even so, the Ender's Game actress has maintained a level head as her career continues to skyrocket. "I'm away from home for six weeks at a time, sometimes more, and it's tough when I miss my dad," she tells Glamour. "But he always says to me, 'Are you having a good time?' And I really am. That's why I'm here."
This article originally appeared on Usmagazine.com: Hailee Steinfeld "Pulled Out" of School Because of Bullying