Grateful to be alive. For the first time, actor Matthew Perry is laying it all out in his new memoir, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, and diving deep into addiction and substance abuse problems that have plagued him for most of his life. 

In addition to an addiction to drugs and alcohol, the Fools Rush In actor also struggles with abandonment issues stemming from his childhood as he remembers how flying as an unaccompanied minor set him into a spiral. 

“Not having a parent on that flight is one of the many things that led to a lifelong feeling of abandonment,” Matthew, 53, wrote in his autobiography which will be released on November 1. “If I’d been enough, they wouldn’t have left me unaccompanied, right? Isn’t that how all this was supposed to work? The other kids had parents with them. I had a sign and a magazine.”

These feelings of not being “enough” followed Matty into adulthood and reared their ugly head in many of his romantic relationships, including with America’s Sweetheart Julia Roberts, whom he dated in the mid-1990s. 

Upon learning that the Pretty Woman actress would only agree to appear on season 2 of Friends if she “if she could be in [his] story line,” Matthew – who played beloved character Chandler Bing for the show’s 10 seasons – “had to woo her.”

His efforts were a success and according to his memoir, the two “would already be a couple by the time [they] started filming the Friends Super Bowl episode.” However, by April 1996, just three months after filming the episodes, their relationship was over. 

“Dating Julia Roberts had been too much for me,” the Massachusetts native wrote. “I had been constantly certain that she was going to break up with me — why would she not? I was not enough; I could never be enough. I was broken, bent, unlovable.” 

“So instead of facing the inevitable agony of losing her, I broke up with the beautiful and brilliant Julia Roberts,” he continued. “I can’t begin to describe the look of confusion on her face.”

Nearly 15 years later, in November 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic, it seemed Matthew had finally found the one in talent manager Molly Hurwitz as the pair announced their engagement. However, just six months later, they called it quits.

“I bought her a ring because I was desperate that she would leave me,” he wrote of his once fiancée. “I didn’t want to be this injured and alone during Covid. I was high on 1,800 milligrams of hydrocodone when I asked her to marry me. I had even asked for her family’s blessing. Then I’d proposed, high as a kite. And on one knee. And she knew it, too. And she said yes.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Keep scrolling for all the most shocking revelations from Matthew Perry’s memoir. 



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