Clay Enos (Courtesy of TNT)(NEW YORK) — In the TNT inspired-by-true-events limited series, I Am the Night, Golden Brooks says she plays a very different type of mother than she's used to portraying.

In the new series, Brooks — who starred as the struggling single mom Maya Wilkes in the popular '90s UPN sitcom Girlfriends — plays Jimmy Lee, an abusive adoptive mother to a young teenage girl. Brooks tells ABC Radio it wasn't easy to get into the mindset of Jimmy.

"[You] think, 'OK where… Golden where do you go to find this?'" she says. "I'm not an addict. I love my daughter so much."

"But then, you know, there is always something in your life if you close your eyes and really go deep in your past, there was something that bookmarked you that you have suppressed," she continues. "Whatever it is."

To find that raw connection, Brooks says she had to do some serious soul-searching. That included tapping into dark emotions from her past.

"Resentment, anger, jealousy. It doesn't have to be the emotion right at hand, but it has to be something that took you to that place where it was everyone else's fault," she explains. "'And how dare you wake up and look at me and ask me to explain who I am?' There's something, whether it's a man or a woman…or you didn't get a job. And something that happened cyclically. Something that happens over, and over, and over again. And over time it calluses you."

"And so that's where I went with Jimmy," she says.

I Am the Nightairs Monday nights on TNT at at 9 p.m. ET.

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