Drew Barrymore opens up about her sobriety and why alcohol ‘did not serve’ her


(CNN)Drew Barrymore has rarely hid from discussions of her childhood addictions and journey to sobriety. But earlier this week, the actress and talk show host shared something new — she’s given up alcohol.

“I’m gonna say something for the first time in a long time — I have not had a drink of alcohol in two-and-a-half years,” she told the hosts of “CBS This Morning.” “It was something that I realized just did not serve me and my life.”

Barrymore said she hadn’t widely shared that she’d stopped drinking because “it was this quiet, confident journey” that she wanted to keep private.

    “Now it’s been long enough where I’m in a lifestyle that I know is really working on a high road for my little journey, and there’s so much peace finally being had where there were demons,” she said.

      Barrymore was appearing on the program because of another interview she’d conducted on her self-titled talk show. One of her guests, Machine Gun Kelly, admitted onstage to Barrymore that he’d been struggling with his mental health.

        Instead of reverting to the questions she’d planned, Barrymore listened and discussed her own mental health challenges while Kelly (whose real name is Colson Baker) gave her a manicure. She shared that she visited a facility in Utah to “change her life” after her divorce (she split from Will Kopelman in 2016).

        “We had a very different show planned with him,” she said on “CBS This Morning.” “I just pivoted and went, ‘you’re in the right place. Let’s break this down.'”

          The actress, who shot to fame as a 6-year-old in “E.T.” and has appeared in more than 50 movies, said that by sharing her intimate journey, “I breathe a sigh of relief.”

          “We’re not doing this for public attention … I would like to move forward in a more honest fashion that is more conducive to my mental peace,” she told co-host Gayle King.

          Barrymore’s opened up before about her struggles with substance use, even penning a memoir as a teenager to recount her experiences. As a child actor, she became addicted to cocaine, which she said got her blacklisted in Hollywood at the age of 12.

            She was placed in rehab and mental institutions, but after a suicide attempt at 14 and some more rehabilitation, she sought — and was granted — legal emancipation from her mother.

            “Maybe people think, like, I figured out so many problems when I was young, because it was so hard then,” she said on CBS. “We continue to confront things with each decade of our life that almost surpasses what we thought we had seen. I’m interested in that conversation — we don’t fix it, move on and it never breaks again. We are on that roller coaster.”