Thanks to syndication, it's pretty hard not to catch old episodes of Friends on cable for a nostalgic trip to the past. However, one person who wants to escape memories of that time is one of its former stars, Matthew Perry.
"I honestly recoil," Perry told Good Morning America when asked about seeing old pictures of himself from his Friends heyday. "It's scary to look at that. I was a sick guy."
Perry, 43, is referring to his addiction problems. While his career was booming, Perry's personal life was much darker, because of his abuse of alcohol and opiates. "I think I was pretty good at hiding it, you know, but, you know, eventually people were aware," he said of his cast mates on the popular NBC sitcom.
Although many would think being in the limelight made his recovery tougher, Perry says having his personal problems, and multiple trips to rehab during Friends, splashed across the tabloids was actually a positive. "It actually ultimately helped me because I couldn't just walk into a bar," he said. "Everybody in the bar would go, 'You can't do that. I just read, and you can't.'"
Now sober, Perry is hoping to help others on their road to recovery. Perry has turned his famous Malibu home into a sober living home, called Perry's House, for men transitioning from rehab into the real world. The actor, who most recently starred on the NBC comedy Go On, was recently honored at the White House for "giving a voice to the millions of Americans in recovery." He received the Champion of Recovery award from U.S. drug czar Gil Kerlikowske. "Champions of recovery, which is a very surreal thing," he said. "We're award-winning alcoholics."
Perry most recently appeared on the small screen when he reunited with his former Friends co-stars Courteney Cox and Jennifer Aniston on The Ellen DeGeneres Show last week. However, he dismissed any talk of a full-fledged reunion. "I don't think so," Perry said. "It would be terrible to do something and have it not be good because, you know, it was so terrific and if we did a movie or we did -- and it sucked, it would blemish it."
- Arts & Entertainment