Ashley Tisdale on navigating newfound motherhood and the continuation of the ‘High School Musical’ brand

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Ashley Tisdale has worn many hats throughout her career, but she recently added perhaps her most important title to date: mother. The actress welcomed daughter Jupiter with husband Chris French back in March.

For the latest episode of In The Know’s celebrity interview series We Should Talk, Ashley Tisdale opened up about her special first several months with her baby girl, navigating motherhood in the public eye, introducing Jupiter to friend and former “High School Musical” co-star Vanessa Hudgens and her thoughts on the continuation of the HSM brand through “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.”

“I’ve felt the love since I even announced that I was pregnant. I did not know that it was going to be that big of a deal. I think people just were waiting so long. Me and my husband have been married for a long time, so they were just like, ‘Are you ever having kids?’ And then when I announced, it was just such a huge explosion of so much love and support,” Tisdale told In The Know. “[Jupiter] is three months, so I’m technically in my fourth trimester, so it’s just gotten better each day that goes by. She is so, so cute. It’s so funny because I was not going to share a picture of her on Instagram, and then I did, and I can’t stop now at this point.”

Listen to Ashley Tisdale’s full episode of We Should Talk below, and keep reading for highlights from the interview:

Ashley Tisdale on Vanessa Hudgens meeting her baby, Jupiter: “What was wild to me was that Jupiter hasn’t met a ton of people because of the [COVID] situation, [because] we don’t have anyone that’s not vaccinated around her. But with Vanessa, I’ve never seen Jupiter — she hasn’t even done it for me — she reached out, like, ‘Please hold me!’ to Vanessa. I was like, ‘Oh, my God!’ You could just tell Jupiter knew how much Vanessa means to me. It was definitely crazy because I’d look at Vanessa, and she’d be looking at the baby, and I’m like, ‘Can you believe that’s mine?’ It’s just so weird! Me and Vanessa are like the Courteney and Jen of “Friends.” It’s beautiful that we get to share these amazing moments together, and it’s so funny because she would just get so teary-eyed just looking at the baby and stuff. She’s just so sweet, so it was a beautiful moment. It was wild. […] She’s beautiful, Vanessa, so [Jupiter] was probably like, ‘You’re so beautiful!’ She just knew.”

Ashley Tisdale on the pressures of being a new mom in the public eye: “I think the biggest pressure I felt was losing weight, to be honest. I felt that everyone’s like, ‘You’re going to lose the weight on the table!’ And then you actually think that’s going to happen. Like, ‘Wait, no, that didn’t happen.’ You’re so pregnant for so long, and I just want to fit back into my jeans again. That was really a lot of the pressure, and that’s when I wrote a post where I said I had to let go of it. It’s a different body right now, and that’s okay. I have to remember to thank my body for what it’s been through instead of saying, ‘You’re not good enough. You didn’t lose as much weight as that person on Instagram, and they were having the baby at the same time.’ We’re all so different, and we all really need to support each other in those situations. […] They say that it takes nine months to take it off, anyway. It’s like, yeah, I obviously would love to just be able to be that person, but I’m just not, and that’s okay. We’re all so different! I look at my baby, and I’m like, ‘I can’t believe I created that.'”

Ashley Tisdale on the continuation of the “High School Musical” brand with “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series”: “I haven’t really seen the show. I saw a little bit of it because I love Olivia Rodrigo’s music. I was like, ‘Oh, she’s in the show!’ so I watched a little bit of the first episode, and what I loved about it was that, if you’re gonna do something and bring something [back] in a different form, I feel like that was the right way to do it. The fact that it was so different from the movies I thought was really cool, because this generation is just… I don’t know if it would’ve worked, those movies! It was just so over the top, and this generation is so much cooler. They have, like, Millie Bobby Brown to look up to, you know? I don’t know if it would’ve worked as well, but it’s really cool to see that they’ve continued and continued in a different approach. It’s obviously working. It’s great to be part of something like that, for sure.”

Ashley Tisdale on “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” having increased queer representation: “I know we had discussions about Lukas, who played Ryan, and the fact that we couldn’t really, like… the best thing about [director] Kenny Ortega was that he would try to do little breadcrumbs so that you knew, but we weren’t able to be as open. The fact that the show does that is so, so cool. I just feel like we’re in this better zone with everything. I’m proud of Disney.”

Ashley Tisdale on how motherhood has affected her career choices: “With everything from movies and TV, I think the only thing that’s pretty much changed is more that, in the past, I’d be like, ‘Oh, that sounds fun! Let’s do that!’ And now, because I have a baby, I’m just like, ‘Okay, I’m focused on what I really want to do in TV. I’m focused on what kind of characters I want to play in movies.’ I’m not as much, like, ‘Yeah, sure! Because I have the time!’ It’s like, ‘No, I want to spend that time with my baby.’ Now I’m just ultimately really focused on exactly what I want to do versus just kind of being like, ‘Let’s just have fun!'”

Ashley Tisdale on newfound motherhood: “From the very second day, we had trouble with breastfeeding, and I’ve been very open about that on my blog, Frenshe. It was something that I probably didn’t expect would happen. […] I was trying so hard that first week, and she kept on being fussy and really frustrated, and that was frustrating me. I didn’t want to have that be our relationship. Even though she was in my stomach, this is a new relationship! So, you don’t want to have these resentments or frustrations or feelings [of] guilt. All of that stuff, you want it to be pure and you want it to be loving. It’s all around feeding, and you want that special moment with your baby, so I researched a lot, and I actually love Enfamil’s Enspire [formula].”

Watch our full interview with Ashley Tisdale below, and find out more about her partnership with Enfamil here:

If you enjoyed this story, check out In The Know’s recent interview with Bachelor alum Jade Roper Tolbert about her motherhood journey and life after the show!

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