The former ‘Friends’ actor explains why he waited to go public with his addiction and how he manages to stay sober after struggling to pull him out of booze and drugs.

AceShowbizMatthew Perry claims the scars on his stomach from 14 surgeries remind him to stay sober. Amid his drink and drug addictions which saw him at one point drop to 128lbs (9 stone) in weight, the “Friends” actor, 53, went under the knife several times, had to use a colostomy bag for nine months, and went to rehab 15 times.

“I wanted to share when I was safe from going into the dark side of everything again. I had to wait until I was pretty safely sober – and away from the active disease of alcoholism and addiction – to write it all down. And the main thing was, I was pretty certain that it would help people,” He told the new issue of People magazine about revealing his struggle in his upcoming memoir, “Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing”.

He added about his surgery scars being a reminder to never take Oxycontin again, “All I have to do is look down.” Matthew’s colon burst from opioid overuse in a “gastrointestinal perforation,” which led to him spending two weeks in a coma and five months in the hospital and had to use a colostomy bag for nine months.

He added, “The doctors told my family that I had a 2% chance to live. I was put on a thing called an ECMO machine, which does all the breathing for your heart and your lungs. And that’s called a Hail Mary. No one survives that.”

The actor, who played Chandler Bing on “Friends”, added, “I’m pretty healthy now. I’ve got to not go to the gym much more, because I don’t want to only be able to play superheroes. But no, I’m a pretty healthy guy right now… it’s important, but if you lose your sobriety, it doesn’t mean you lose all that time and education.”

“Your sober date changes, but that’s all that changes. You know everything you knew before, as long as you were able to fight your way back without dying, you learn a lot.”

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