On November 1, 2022, Matthew Perry’s memoir Friends, Lovers and The Big Terrible Thing about his years addicted to alcohol and drugs will be released. Unlike many celebrity memoirs on this topic, this confessional is solely written by him for the purpose of enlightening the public about addiction.
The popular actor known for his role of Chandler Bing on the comedy “Friends,” sobered up for the 2021 “Friends” reunion on television. Although he vowed he would not drink on the set of “Friends,” he would show up at work “hungover” and shaky. Fellow star Jennifer Anniston urged him to seek treatment. One wonders why this talented handsome Canadian actor would have low self-esteem and break off relationships that were going well. He tells all in the memoir.
Perry, at age eighteen was drinking daily, but that wasn’t the only addiction he had. He began abusing opioids after he was prescribed painkillers in 1997. In a one-hour interview with Diane Sawyer, Perry stated that he faked migraines and other disorders to get Xanax and Oxycontin pills (“doctor shopping, a common practice among substance abusers) not to get “high,”” as well as going to “open houses,” whatever it took to survive as he told Sawyer. Eventually, his daily habit was up to fifty-five pills per day.
This lead him in 2018 to a near-death experience. After his colon burst from his extreme opioid abuse, he was on life support. He was predicted to have only a 2% chance of staying alive. In a coma for two weeks, he was recovering in the hospital for FIVE months and had to use a colostomy bag for nine months.
So seriously ill, he was on an ecmo machine which does all the breathing for your heart and lungs. In his efforts to get sober, Perry figured that he has attended 6,000 Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and spent $9 million to attain sobriety. However, you don’t have to spend like a millionaire to seek sobriety. Here are some treatment organizations that are very affordable:
- SAMHSA National Helpline to find public health agencies, to find substance use treatment and information. 1-800-662-4357.
- Alcoholics Anonymous, 1-888-571-4171.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Wesley Cullen Davidson
Wesley Cullen Davidson is an award-winning freelance writer and journalist specializing in parenting. Currently, she is targeting her writing about recovery to parents whose children have substance abuse disorders.
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