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Matthew Perry Discusses His Addictions
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The star of one of the most popular sitcoms of all time is finally coming clean about his addiction issues behind the scenes of “Friends.” While it has long been known that actor Matthew Perry struggled with alcohol, opiates, and depression while working on the blockbuster show, he has rarely discussed his issues with the press. After receiving an award for his work helping young men in Los Angeles stay sober, he spoke about his own demons with ABC News.

“Mostly it was drinking and…and opiates,” said Perry, when asked about his secret life while shooting “Friends. I think I was pretty good at hiding it. But, you know, eventually people were aware. I was a sick guy.”

  
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During the time that “Friends” was on the air, Perry was reported to have entered and exited rehabilitation centers several times, and his weight fluctuated wildly during the show’s 10 seasons. Though he did a 28 day stay in a rehab facility in 1997, he was not able to fully overcome his addictions, and has admitted to relapsing even after “Friends” went off the air in 2004.

Perry credits Earl Hightower, an addiction specialist, with ultimately helping him get back onto the straight and narrow. Since achieving sobriety, Perry has been working with Hightower to help other people struggling with addiction across the country. The duo converted Perry’s old residence in Malibu into a sober-living home called the Perry House, which helps men transition from rehab back into society.

Earlier in 2013, Perry and Hightower were honored at the White House with a Champion of Recovery award from the Office of National Drug Control Policy, which recognized the work they had done together at the Perry House.

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