My house was built in 1983. I put one coat of acrylic primer on the bathroom walls. The next day, the primer as well as the old paint peeled away from the walls in sheets, down to the bare drywall. Huge sections of drywall paper came away from the walls too. There is also a chalky/powdery substance on the surface of the bare drywall. Can this be fixed, or should I replace the drywall? And, why did this happen? Thanks in advance.
I am going to take a stab here and suggest that what you actually did was prime over existing wallpaper. When you wet the paper, lucky for you, the paper came off. The chalky/powdery substance is the paste with which the paper was applied. Clean off the paste with 3 or 4 clean water cleanings, prime and paint.