Credit: Howard Wise/JPI (4), Gilles Toucas/CBS

“There’s a part of her past that has made her the way she is.”

The Bold and the Beautiful may never have had Sheila Carter stop and ask, “Why am I like this?” but Kimberlin Brown has done just that. In fact, the question was foremost on her mind when the character debuted on The Young and the Restless more than three decades ago.

“When I first started playing Sheila,” the actress shared during a recent edition of Bold Live, “I needed to come up with my own backstory to justify her doing the things that she did. It doesn’t mean that the writers or producers believe [the history I settled on], it’s just for me to play her” and give motivation to the madness.

Sympathy for the She-Devil

The tale that Sheila has yet to get to tell could move the most disdainful viewer to stop giving her the evils. Even Steffy Forrester, the daughter-in-law that she shot in cold blood, might be forced to see that Sheila wasn’t born bad; life just… chucked stuff at her. “Something terrible happened in my past,” says Brown, speaking in character. “Absolutely terrible. I’m sure it had something to do with both of my parents as well.

“Maybe someday that will be talked about,” she adds. “Maybe that’ll be another storyline eventually.

Kimberlin Brown, Tracey Bregman, Sheila, Lauren rivalry Young and Restless

Thanks to Sheila, something bad happened in Lauren Fenmore’s past, too.

Credit: CBS

Whether it is or it isn’t, Brown is certain that Sheila’s future doesn’t have to be dictated by her past. She wants to believe in romance! “She’s capable of changing, she just needs to learn how to be loved the way that normal people are,” she says. “She’s never had that, and it’s all she’s ever wanted.”

Though Sheila has a tendency to fall for every guy who’s nice to her — and even some that aren’t — she’s yet to land in a long-term relationship. “Every time she’s had it at her fingertips,” Brown notes, “there’s always been somebody trying to take it away from her and not allow her to have that kind of happiness.”

Us Against the World

At the moment, there’s less somebody trying to break up Sheila and her significant other than everybody. When word began to spread that she’d ensnared Bill Spencer in her web, “Well done, then,” wasn’t exactly the reaction that she got. Nevertheless, “this is a great opportunity for Sheila to change her ways,” Brown says in the video, which you can watch in its entirety below. And the powers that be “are giving that chance right now, because she has been set free yet again.

“Truly, when she shot her son, it was an accident,” she continues. “Now, did she try to shoot Steffy? Yeah, she did. She didn’t expect her son to jump in front of the bullet!”

B&B sheila steffy alley HW

“Bygones! Say it, Steffy! Say it!”

Credit: Howard Wise/JPI

It’s Now or Never

Technically, Sheila didn’t merely try to shoot Steffy, she did shoot the mother of two… and leave her to die among the stale breadsticks in the alley behind Il Giardino. But, given the rules of soap-opera law, Sheila may eventually be able to just live her life if she makes “sorry” a part of her everyday vernacular. “Hi. Sorry.” “Hey. Sorry.” She could even manage to convince people — the audience included — that her affair with Bill isn’t just another silly crush.

Possibly for the first time, “she definitely has an opportunity to finally be loved,” Brown marvels. “Bill accepts her as she is, regardless of all of the mistakes she’s made, just like Sheila accepts Bill for his past mistakes.

“It just depends,” she concludes, “on where the writers choose to take things.”

Catch up on the relationship status of your favorite Bold & Beautiful couples in the updated photo gallery below.