Matthew Perry continues to share candid moments from his long sobriety journey and struggles he experienced on NBC’s “Friends” while tossing between Vicodin and alcohol addiction .
In an excerpt from his new book “Friends, Lovers, and Terrible Events,” Perry recounts how co-star Jennifer Aniston’s visit to his trailer made him realize that his covert behavior with alcohol wasn’t all that secretive.
“‘I know you’re drinking,’ she said,” Perry, 53, wrote in a memoir published by The Times of London.
“I’ve long forgotten her – I’ve been fine since she started dating Brad Pitt – and have figured out how long to watch her without being embarrassed, but facing Jennifer Aniston is still Devastating. I’m so confused,” he continued.
“‘How do you know?’ I said. I’ve never had alcohol. “I’ve been trying to hide it…”
Elsewhere in the excerpt, Perry mentions that he “never” worked high or was drunk (though he “definitely gets a hangover from work”), saying he was largely able to be part of the super-successful “friends” ensemble , thanks to his actors and how they’ll be “around the [him] and props [him] Get up”, like an injured penguin being supported by other penguins.
“I am a wounded penguin, but I am determined not to let these amazing people and this show down,” he wrote.
But in Perry’s trailer that day, Aniston bluntly told him there was nothing he could do.
“‘We can smell it,’ she said in a strange but loving way, and the plural of ‘we’ hit me like a sledgehammer,” Perry wrote.
“‘I know I’m drinking too much,’ I said, ‘but I don’t know what to do.'”
The “Full Nine Yards” star also describes how his weight fluctuated wildly in the new book, either because drugs made him sick and reduced his appetite, or alcohol made him bloated.
“If you measure my weight by season, you can track the trajectory of my addiction – when I’m weight-bearing, it’s alcohol; when I’m skinny, it’s pills. When I’ve got a goatee, it’s Lots of pills.”
Perry even touched on specific points during the 10-season run of the hit series and gave readers an idea of how addicted he was at the time.
“By the end of the third season, I was mostly working out how to get 55 Vicodin a day – I had to get 55 a day or I would be very sick. It was a full-time job: calling, See a doctor, fake a migraine, find a dishonest nurse, and they’ll give me what I need,” Perry wrote.
The actor recently said that now that he’s safely detoxed, he’s finally ready to share his experience.
“I wanted to share when I can safely avoid getting caught up in the dark side of everything again,” Perry told PEOPLE about the book. “I had to wait until I was fairly safe sober — away from the active disease of alcoholism and addiction — to write it down. Most importantly, I’m pretty sure it will help people.”
Friends, Lovers, and Terrible Events by Matthew Perry will be published by Headline on November 1.