She infamously struggled with addiction in her early years as a child star, but Drew Barrymore has revealed that old demons drove her to drink in the wake of her 2016 divorce from ex-husband Will Kopelman. In a new interview with People, the actor spoke about the “cripplingly difficult” time in her life after her marriage broke down.
“It was just trying to numb the pain and feel good—and alcohol totally did that for me,” the star told the publication. “The drinking thing for me was a constant, like, ‘You cannot change. You are weak and incapable of doing what’s best for you. You keep thinking you will master this thing, and it’s getting the better of you’.”
The Flower Beauty founder explained that relocating to New York to be closer to Kopelman’s family prompted her to break down during her first winter in a new city. “It just took me down,” she said. “There are times where you can look at someone you think is a strong person and see them so broken and go, ‘How the f— did they get there?’ And I was that person. I broke.”
Although her split from Kopelman was amicable, Barrymore struggled to deal with the sudden upheaval. “There was no scandal. Nothing went wrong, which is cleaner, but makes it harder and more confusing because there isn’t The Thing to point to,” she said. “We tried so hard to make it work. [A friend] said to me, ‘Divorce is the death of a dream.’ That’s exactly what it feels like, something so final you can’t get it back.”
The star says going to therapy and starting work on her hit talk show, The Drew Barrymore Show, inspired her to change her life and quit drinking. “It was my kids that made me feel like it’s game time,” she said, adding that the show “gave me something to focus on and pour myself into. It gave us something to believe in.”
Barrymore now enjoys a close relationship with Kopelman and his new wife, Alexandra Michler, as they co-parent daughters Olive and Frankie, and says she’s finally found her happiness again – even if some days it doesn’t come so easily.
“It is a choice,” she admits. “You have to work for that.”
We love to see our Drew healthy and happy again.