The Untold Truth Of Sarah Hyland

Acting since her childhood, Sarah Hyland was thrust into the spotlight thanks to ABC's hit show "Modern Family." Playing the role of Haley Dunphy, Hyland has won a number acting awards, including four Screen Actors Guild Awards for outstanding performance by an ensemble in a comedy series and a Kids' Choice Award for favorite family TV actress. She's also been nominated for a Critics' Choice Television Award for best supporting actress in a comedy series and for several Teen Choice Awards for choice TV actress, female scene stealer, and female breakout star.


Hyland has more than 1.4 million followers on Twitter and over 9 million followers on Instagram, where she often posts personal and heartfelt updates about her life. While Hyland seems like she has it all, she's gone through a surprising amount of hardship, particularly regarding her health. And while she's known for her refreshingly candid interviews, there's a lot fans may not know about her. Here is the untold truth of Sarah Hyland.

Sarah Hyland didn't go to a typical high school

Rather than going to a traditional public school for her high school education, Sarah Hyland attended the prestigious Professional Performing Arts School in New York City, a school for the arts, as noted by Bustle. According to its website, its students can study everything from musical theater to drama to classical vocal music. Based on the time of her high school reunion, Hyland graduated from PPAS in 2008 — only a year before the TV debut of "Modern Family."


In 2018, Hyland returned for her high school reunion with her beau, Wells Adams, in tow. Adams posted several Instagram stories from the event, saying on camera, "You want to know what love is? Love is going to your girlfriend's high school reunion when you've never even went to your own high school reunion" (via E! News). Adams captioned another photo, "Sarah's high school friends are cool," confirming that he had a great night.

She acted like a diva after landing her first acting role

Sarah Hyland has been acting from a tender age. When she was 4 years old, she landed an acting role as Howard Stern's daughter in the 1997 movie "Private Parts."

Looking back on the role, Hyland told Yahoo! Entertainment, "There was a PA, and he was like, 'I'll get you anything you need.' I was like, 'PA — oh, like personal assistant!' I was like, 'Blimpie and chocolate-covered strawberries!' And somehow he found it. "


Over the years, before landing her breakout role as Haley Dunphy in "Modern Family," Hyland also nabbed roles in movies and TV shows. Her list of credits include "Another World," "Lipstick Jungle," and the 1999 "The Wonderful World of Disney" version of "Annie." Hyland also acted in the movie "The Object of My Affection" with Jennifer Aniston and Paul Rudd and had a bit part in the movie "Spanglish" as "Sleepover Friend." Of the latter gig, she told Yahoo! Entertainment, "It's me literally running from a car into the house, and then just sitting on a couch smiling like a doofus."

Sarah Hyland comes from humble beginnings

Growing up, Sarah Hyland and her family lived in a 300-square-foot New York City apartment, complete with a bathtub in the kitchen, according to Cosmopolitan. Because Hyland's father is a working actor, she told the magazine that he "had to travel the country to do any type of regional theater to put food on the table." Luckily, the years of struggle paid off — not just for Sarah herself, but also for her father, who was cast as Dumbledore in Broadway's "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child."


However, knowing the business made Hyland's father against her following in his footsteps. "They were totally against it," Hyland told Teen Vogue. "My dad is an actor, so they know how tough the entertainment industry can be." Despite her father's resistance to Hyland's chosen career path, she demonstrated her trademark determination, moving to Los Angeles from New York City when she was only 18 years old. "I gave myself two months to book a job," she said. "One month later I was cast on 'Modern Family.'"

The actress had the 'biggest' crush on this actor

In 1998, young Sarah Hyland starred as Molly, the child of Jennifer Aniston's character, in the movie "The Object of My Affection." According to an interview Hyland gave to Yahoo! Entertainment, she had "the biggest crush" on co-star Paul Rudd while filming the romantic comedy. "I was dying inside when I first met him," she said. "I ran into Paul a couple years ago and he was like, 'Hey! You're so big!' I was like, 'Yeah, I have boobs now.'"


Hyland has continued to keep up with Jennifer Aniston. When the "Friends" actress joined Instagram in 2019, Hyland posted a throwback photo from the movie, showing her being held by Rudd and Aniston. "In honor of @jenniferaniston getting an Instagram I'm reposting this picture from almost 24 years ago. Neither she, Paul Rudd, nor myself have aged since 1996. I love ya fake mama! #objectofmyaffection," Hyland wrote in the caption.

Sarah Hyland has had multiple surgeries for this health condition

Born with kidney dysplasia, Sarah Hyland has struggled with health issues her entire life. Not only has she had two kidney transplants, but she's also endured laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis and surgery to correct an abdominal hernia, as she told Self in a candid 2018 interview about her health. "Laparoscopic [surgery is] one of the most painful things I've ever been through in my life," she said.


"That's why I'm so independent," she told Self. "In some areas of my life, I literally have no choice but to be dependent. I've been going through this for 28 years, and I still am learning how to let go of control and how to be patient."

Hyland's health has continually brushed up against her personal and professional life. Sarah began dialysis in February 2017, choosing a center near the set of "Modern Family" so that she could continue with her shooting schedule. Through it all, she's been candid about her health. "I think a lot of people hide their struggles because they don't want to be seen as weak," she told Cosmopolitan. Clearly, Hyland knows that it's not weak to be open and honest.

This is a relationship deal breaker for Sarah Hyland

In 2019, Sarah Hyland shared her attitude toward relationships with The Hollywood Reporter, revealing that her parents' strong marriage gives her faith in the institution. "I have always believed in marriage," she said. "I fortunately have parents who are not divorced and who have had a very loving and healthy relationship from the get-go. So if you don't believe in marriage, that was a big deal breaker for me before I got engaged."


Hyland is in good company with her beau, Wells Adams, judging not just by his sweet Instagram posts about their relationship but also by how he's cared for Hyland and her health. "I am now like a host that can get her sick," he told the E! News podcast "Just the Sip," "so now I've become super germaphobe not for me, but for her."

The two shared their love for each other after only a month, so clearly Hyland is no shrinking violet. "I asked him when he was going to ask me to be his girlfriend," she told Cosmopolitan. "I'm impatient."

How Sarah Hyland met her partner

Sarah Hyland and her partner, Wells Adams, often post adorable, loved-up photos on Instagram, which is fitting considering they connected via social media. A contestant on JoJo Fletcher's season of "The Bachelorette" in 2016, Adams publicly came on Hyland's radar when she called him "hot" on Twitter. "Ugh! @WellsAdams making a 'Lord of the Flies' reference on men tell all??? #knewhewasthebestfromthestart #menwhoreadarehot," she wrote in a post.


Hyland and Adams' first back and forth exchange in 2017 was similarly adorable. Hyland tweeted, "OH MY GOD @WellsAdams IS THE FRIKKIN BARTENDER?! Best. Season. Ever. #BachelorInParadise," to which Adams cheekily replied, "Taking applications for #BIP5 bar backs now. Please send references..Preferably from Phil Dunphy. I'm kidding the job is yours @Sarah_Hyland."

Of their connection online leading to love, Hyland told Cosmopolitan, "It's the most millennial thing in the entire world," adding, "I kind of want to gag at it." However, despite their millennial meeting, Hyland immediately knew Adams was the one. "We were talking about what kinds of weddings we wanted four days after we made things official," she explained to the magazine. "I hate that typical cliché of 'when you know, you know,' but it's so f**king true. At least it was for me."


This is how Sarah Hyland got engaged

In July 2019, Sarah Hyland and Wells Adams got engaged in Fiji, with Wells capturing the moment with the help of a drone. Both Hyland and Adams announced their engagement on their Instagram, with Hyland posting five photos of the moment they got engaged, writing, "That can't eat, can't sleep, reach for the stars, over the fence, world series kind of stuff @wellsadams." Adams wrote on his Instagram post, "I'll be Johnny, you be June. But forever."


After the engagement, Adams spilled the details on his "Your Favorite Thing With Wells & Brandi" podcast with co-host Brandi Cyrus. "She said yes, which was, I think, surprising to everyone involved. Real touch and go there," the "Bachelor in Paradise" star joked to Cyrus.

As to whether or not Hyland was shocked by the proposal, Adams said, "I don't think so. I think she will say that she was. I threw her off at the end." He elaborated, "I think she knew it was happening and then right before we left I was dressed pretty frumpy. ... But listen, Sarah's a smart girl. She knew what was happening, I think."

She has zero tolerance for outfit shaming

In February 2020, Sarah Hyland and her "Modern Family" co-star Ariel Winter were photographed together while attending the show's final season wrap party at the Sunset Room Hollywood in Los Angeles. Hyland posted photos of the two to her Instagram account, as well as photos of them with the actor behind their on-screen brother, Nolan Gould. In the caption, Hyland wrote, "I love these people with all my heart. ... We'll always be Dunphys and we'll always have each other."


However, the photos were met with a smattering of nasty comments from trolls tearing down Winter for an outfit deemed too revealing by some, as reported by the Independent. In response to these Instagram comments shaming Winter, Hyland swiftly clapped back, replying with comments of support for the woman who played her TV sister. "She's a sexy and confident woman," Hyland replied, adding, "Everyone that is making a negative comment about my sister can back the f*** up because I WILL NOT tolerate it."

Clearly, Hyland is not okay with shaming of any kind and is fiercely protective of Winter.

What Sarah Hyland thought about being mostly absent from Modern Family's final season

For more than 10 years, Sarah Hyland played the role of Haley Dunphy to perfection on "Modern Family," evolving the character from a shallow and somewhat bratty teen to a mature young mother of twins. However, despite Hyland's integral role to the show, her appearances were cut back in the final season.


Hyland spoke to Cosmopolitan about her reduced screen time, confessing that she was disappointed. She wished that Haley had been given more of a chance to "own her bada**ery in the fashion world — becoming a bada** stylist or brand mogul or anything like that."

Hyland's limited screen time focused solely on her new status as a mom of twins, something Hyland wished had been pushed further to round out the character. "There are so many amazing mothers who are also hard workers and excel at their jobs and kill it every day in both aspects," Hyland told the magazine. "That would have been a really cool thing to see, especially from someone like Haley."

Why Sarah Hyland sees an energy healer

When Sarah Hyland gave a no-holds-barred interview to Cosmopolitan magazine in 2020, she confessed that she'd been visiting an energy healer — the same person "Pretty Little Liars" actress Lucy Hale sees — to balance her chakras and vibrational levels. Each morning, Hyland now wakes and repeats mantras like "I put myself first" and "I'm grateful to have two legs to walk on."


Repeating what her healer told her, Hyland said, "Your heart chakra, I've never seen so many barriers and chains around it," adding, "Your self-love is so depleted. Your energy could be so much higher than it is right now." While she knows it might seem a bit "crazy-hippie-dippie," Hyland seems at ease in her skin, especially considering her years of health struggles.

On her personal healing and her health, Hyland is thoughtful, displaying maturity beyond her years. "I'm aware of everything I need to work on, and I know the steps to get there," she shared.

Here's what Sarah Hyland and Wells Adams think about having kids

It's only natural that Sarah Hyland and her partner, Wells Adams, would start looking ahead to the possibility of children. In 2019, their thoughts about having a family played out in public when Adams posted a sweet photo on Instagram of him tenderly cuddling a baby boy. Adams hilariously captioned it, "Uncle Bub actively destroying Sarah Hyland's ovaries." Hyland commented in reply, "Consider them destroyed."


Instagram joking aside, Adams gave an interview to E! News' "Just the Sip" podcast in 2020 in which he talked about their baby plans. "I'm the youngest of five. I want to have a family. ... She does as well, but we're both super career-oriented and driven right now so that's not front of mind," he said. "It'll happen down the line. I'm lucky enough that she's a lot younger than I am so I don't think she is in any hurry."

Sarah Hyland isn't just an actor ... she also has this major talent

Sarah Hyland is known for her acting chops, so it might be surprising to discover that she's also a phenomenal singer, too. However, Hyland's musical abilities make sense considering her background. When Sarah Hyland was young, she co-starred in a TV version of the musical "Annie," and she has also appeared on Broadway.


In 2016, Hyland and the band Boyce Avenue teamed up for a lovely cover of The Chainsmokers' song "Closer," with Hyland effortlessly tackling singer Halsey's vocals. And over the years, Hyland has continued posting videos of herself singing flawlessly. In 2019, for example, Hyland's Instagram video of her singing "Seasons of Love" from "Rent" racked up more than 600,000 views.

Hyland also delighted fans when she performed with musician Jordan McGraw at the 2019 Teen Choice Awards. They sang their single "Met at a Party," as reported by Entertainment Tonight. Hyland has also popped up with celebs like Kristen Bell and Hunter Parrish at the Hollywood Bowl, having performed the musical "Hair" in 2014 (via Variety).


She was reported to have a show about her life in the works

After more than a decade of "Modern Family" under her belt, Sarah Hyland was ready to take on new projects after the series' end. In 2019, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Hyland was partnering with Oscar-nominated writer-producer Emily V. Gordon of movie "The Big Sick" for an ABC comedy based on both of their lives.


THR reported that the multi-camera comedy would be produced by 20th Century Fox TV and executive produced by "This Is Us" showrunners Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger, alongside Walk-Up Co.'s Adam Londy. Hyland would star in the show, as well as executive produce it. However, as of this writing, there has been little news about the show, though we hope to see Hyland star in a new ABC series sooner rather than later!

Regardless of what Sarah Hyland's next steps are, thanks to her drive and positive attitude, her future looks bright. 

Sarah Hyland joined the Pitch Perfect universe

In March 2022, Deadline reported that Sarah Hyland was now attached to a pretty perfect project: a television spin-off of the "Pitch Perfect" film franchise. As fans anxiously await for it to hit their small screens, Hyland can still hardly believe she's a part of it. "Aca-scuse me?! Reuniting with @adamdevine ????" She wrote on Instagram. "Sounds like Treble!"


The series, which will follow Adam Devine's character from the films, begins in Berlin, where Bumper Allen is making his mark on the music industry. Hyland is set to play his quirky American assistant Heidi, who secretly has aspirations to make it big in the business herself.

It seems safe to say we'll be hearing a whole lot more of Hyland's serious singing skills in the series, too — something she's aspired to combine with acting for a long time. "I'm such a music theatre junkie," she previously told Refinery29. "Stuff like that is always really great."

She's opened up about relationship abuse

Fans had gushed over Sarah Hyland and Matthew Prokop after seeing the real-life couple starring alongside each other in "Geek Charming." However, just behind the scenes, the two were reportedly in an intense, and sometimes abusive, relationship.


In 2014, after dating for five years, TMZ reported that Hyland had issued a restraining order against her ex-boyfriend. Court documents detailed that Prokop had physically and emotionally abused her throughout their relationship. It was only when Hyland's "Modern Family" mom Julie Bowen reportedly got involved that the couple split up safely.

Ever since, Hyland has been heavily involved in an organization called SHE RECOVERS. "The fact that [SHE RECOVERS] works with women who come from abusive situations is really important to me," Hyland said during an interview with Refinery29. "A lot of people like to think that once you're out of an abusive situation, it ends there, but it doesn't. The emotional trauma and scars on the soul stay there, and they impact you for the rest of your life if you don't get help."


She's been mistaken for Mila Kunis

When Sarah Hyland was first finding fame on "Modern Family," there were still people who would mistake her for someone else. In fact, she was often confused for another very famous actress. "Mila Kunis," Hyland shared while on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show." "I get it a lot."


While many actors wouldn't be excited to have their identity being confused with another actor's, Hyland honestly doesn't mind it. "I think it's the biggest compliment ever," she admitted on "The Meredith Vieira Show." "She's so beautiful."

Crazily enough, Kunis often gets recognized as Hyland as well — something the two laughed about after meeting at an awards show. Kunis even admitted that oftentimes, she doesn't even correct people when they refer to her as Sarah Hyland. As she told the "Modern Family" star, "Sometimes I pretend to be you so I feel like I'm young," Hyland laughed.

Sarah Hyland says Adele's music once saved her life

Adele's soulful music has made us feel every emotion a time or two. Yet Sarah Hyland claims that the tunes once went as far as saving her life.

In 2011, the "Modern Family" actress was riding in the car with her boyfriend at the time, Matthew Prokop. The weather that day was rough. Rain was pounding down on the car, and "it was so foggy you couldn't see ten feet ahead of you," she described to E! News.


They were on their way to an audition when they came across a slick spot on the road, sending the car spinning out of control. They were going over lines, but when Adele's "Someone Like You" began playing on the radio, they turned it up to sing along. That was when the near-accident occurred — so thanks to Adele, Prokop and Hyland weren't distracted by audition lines, and Prokop was more focused on the road than he would have been otherwise. They were both able to walk away from the incident with no injuries. "We were just really shaken up," Hyland said, crediting their survival to Adele. "It's like, 'Thank you for saving my life!'"

She doesn't remember everything from filming Modern Family

Though Sarah Hyland spent more than a decade starring on "Modern Family," she's admitted that some of the days she spent on set were a blur: "There are some episodes of 'Modern Family' where I do not remember filming because I was asleep," the actress admitted on the podcast "Quitters."


The star was in the midst of filming Season 3 when she was dealing with major pain due to kidney dysplasia. While working each day as she waited for her first kidney transplant, Hyland often had trouble staying awake due to exhaustion caused by the condition. Between takes, she would even rest her head on a nearby table and only awaken when she was called onto set. "When you have grown up your entire life having health issues and always essentially being in pain, you have to learn how to have thick skin, put on a show, put on a smile in front of everybody," she said. "Because otherwise, you're just going to be looked at as a really weak and pathetic and sad person. I don't like to victimize myself. I don't like other people to victimize me."


Sarah Hyland has addressed why her appearance may have changed on Modern Family

Over the course of her life, Sarah Hyland has dealt privately with both endometriosis and kidney dysplasia. As a result of all the procedures she's had done, the star has had to endure loads of unpleasant symptoms like hair loss and swelling on her face — and they both happened to her while starring on "Modern Family."


Many fans of the sitcom never knew exactly what Hyland was going through. To keep her diagnosis private, she opted to wear hair extensions whenever she was playing Haley Dunphy. "With medications and stuff, it can make your hair fall out," the actress told Refinery29. "So I had extensions put in for Haley to hide any of that loss."

In order to keep up with her filming schedule, Hyland even chose a medical center to go through dialysis each week very close to the set. "My work is my therapy," she said during an interview with Self. "I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for my work."