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Drew Barrymore reveals her therapist was so concerned by her post-divorce drinking that he quit

The actor and her husband of four years, Will Kopelman, divorced in 2016.
/ Source: TODAY

Drew Barrymore has had her fair share of ups and downs in her 48 years of life. However, her 2016 divorce from Will Kopelman affected her life so much that even her therapist ended their relationship.

In a new interview with the Los Angeles Times, the “Drew Barrymore Show” host recalled how her drinking intensified after feeling that she failed to give her two daughters — Olive, 10, and Frankie, 8 — a united family. That’s when Barry Michels, her psychoanalyst, quit on her.

“He just said, ‘I can’t do this anymore,’” Barrymore said. “It was really about my drinking. I said, ‘I get it. I’ve never respected you more. You see I’m not getting better. And I hope, one day, that I can earn your trust back.’”

Her friends also expressed their concern for her, with Cameron Diaz, who has known Barrymore since they were teens, calling it “difficult to watch.”

“But I knew that if we all stuck with her and gave her the support she needed, she would find her way,” Diaz told the outlet. “I have absolute faith in her. You can’t even comprehend how hard it was to be her as a child, and then she shot out the other end with the ability to save herself.”

The “E.T.” star, who began her acting career as an infant, had experimented with drugs and alcohol throughout her life. She said that she could trace back all her negative experiences to alcohol and had convinced herself that she was “highly functioning” when drinking.

Though, even after her therapist and friends called her out, it took some time for her to immediately stop. It wasn’t until 2019 after shooting the first episode of her daytime talk show that she finally quit drinking for good.

“I think the opportunity at a show like this really hit me,” she said. “I was like, ‘I can’t handle this unless I’m in a really clear place.’”

Barrymore doesn't call herself sober or attend programs like Alcoholics Anonymous. She also doesn't want people to think she's “some perfect Puritan” because she felt that alcohol was her specific poison. “I kept thinking, ‘I’ll master this. I’ll figure it out.’ And finally, I just realized: ‘You’ve never mastered this, and you never will.’”

Two years after Michels quit on her, she called him back and they began working together again. This time, giving up alcohol made her aware that she was capable of change. 

“You seem to be so inspired by everybody else, but you treat yourself like s---,” Barrymore said, sharing how she realized she rooted for everyone except herself. “When are you going to be enough for yourself?”

There's still “a lot of stuff” she has to work through, she said, and struggles with how to one day tell her daughters everything that she did when she was young.

But while she used to measure her worth with her work — “because it’s given me so much” — her perspective has shifted and calls motherhood “the role of my life.”

“I realized that just with me and my girls, I am truly happy,” she said. “I’d always thought I’d be on this hamster wheel for this whole life. But maybe there will be something different before the lights go out.”