Joe Jonas has always had a clean-cut image as a Disney star, but rebelled as a teen, smoking marijuana with Miley Cyrus and Demi Lovato, and engaging in underage drinking.
"The first time I smoked weed was with Demi and Miley," Jonas wrote in New York. "I must have been 17 or 18. They kept saying, 'Try it! Try it!' so I gave it a shot, and it was all right. I don’t even smoke weed that often anymore."
Joe also tried alcohol as a teen, not isn't much of a drinker. "I was caught drinking when I was 16 or 17, and I thought the world was going to collapse," he said. "But I was in another country, and it was legal there.
My 21st birthday, I fell down a flight of stairs. I was unconscious that time, and my whole team was scared to death that somebody was going to get a picture. Now I appreciate wine or a vodka-soda at the end of the day every once in a while."
Joe, 24, said he felt intense pressure to maintain his squeaky-clean image as a teen idol whose fan base is young girls. As a result, Jonas said he and his brothers Nick and Kevin had to modify their music and their appearance to pander to their target audience.
I had to shave every day because they wanted me to pretend like I was 16 when I was 20. Because of our age, because of Disney, because of [our chastity] rings, there were so many things throughout our career that we had to sugarcoat. If a lyric was slightly sexual, someone at the record company would tell us we had to change it."
Jonas, who lost his virginity at age 20, briefly dated fellow Disney star Demi Lovato. Looking back, he said he understands why she experienced her deep emotional problems, which included a nervous breakdown, drug and alcohol abuse, and a longtime battle with bulimia and anorexia.
While Joe empathized with Lovato over the pressure they both felt as teen stars, he also felt overwhelmed by her problems.
"I really got to know her and got to see the ins and outs of what she was struggling with, like drug abuse," said Jonas. "I felt like I needed to take care of her, but at the same time I was living a lie, because I wasn’t happy but felt like I had to stay in it for her, because she needed help. I couldn’t express any of that, of course, because I had a brand to protect."
Now older and wiser, Joe is ready to tackle life and stardom as a solo artist after the Jonas Brothers disbanded earlier this year. While Jonas appreciates the fame and fortune being associated with the Disney brand has brought him, he's eager to move forward on his own terms.
"Being a part of the Disney thing for so long will make you not want to be this perfect little puppet forever," he said. "Eventually, I hit a limit and thought, 'Screw all this, I’m just going to show people who I am.' I think that happened to a lot of us. Disney kids are spunky in some way, and I think that’s why Disney hires them."