It has been well documented that, over the decades, Drew Barrymore has transformed from wild alcoholic child star to accomplished actress, director, producer, talk show host and mom of two girls. And she may have a stint in a psychiatric hospital to thank for that.
Opening up to Howard Stern on the Stern Show on Monday, Drew talked about her tumultuous life, from her starring role in E.T. at aged 6 to four decades later, celebrating her 46th birthday on her new talk show- The Drew Barrymore Show.
Drew Barrymore Forgives Her Mother for Locking Her Up in a Psych Ward
In his Sirius XM show, Howard and Drew spoke about how Drew has literally seen it all, including a stretch of time where all there was to see were four padded walls. At age 13, Drew was placed in a psychiatric facility. “I used to laugh at those like Malibu-30 day places,” Drew recalled. “Malibu was sort of the opposite of the experience I had.”
The 50 First Dates actress explained that her mother, Jaid Barrymore placed her in the facility because she was a reckless child celebrity with “too many resources.” Drew admits, “I was going to clubs and not going to school and stealing my mom’s car and, you know, I was out of control.” Drew stayed at Van Nuys Psychiatric for 18 months and was often separated from the other patients by being placed in a padded cell or being tied up in restraints.
Howard asked what a 13 year old has to do to end up in a padded room. “I would channel my inner-riot girl,” Drew told the host. “Some days it was really funny. It [Van Nuys] was like half a kids’ facility and half an old person’s place, so. as I was riling up these young girls, a woman in a walker would go by. It was hilarious.”
We’re glad Drew can laugh about it now, but she did tell Howard she was in Van Nuy Psychiatric for a good six to eight months before her anger subsided and the treatment started to work. “It was the best thing to happen to me, in a sick way, because it cooled me out,” she admitted. Even so, Drew, who is now sober, emancipated from her parents at aged 14. Howard wondered how the relationship with her mother, Jaid, is now.
Drew said she is on speaking terms with Jaid, and in fact had been texting with her earlier in the day. She said after 30 years of therapy and soul searching, and after having children of her own, Drew has come to understand why her mother had her admitted into the psych unit.
“I think she created a monster. And she didn’t know what to do with the monster. This was her last gasp. I really was out of control and I forgive her for making this choice. She probably felt she had nowhere to turn.”
Drew confirmed that Jaid does get to see her granddaughters Frankie (6) and Olive (8) but there are strict boundaries in place. Drew shared that she has also set boundaries between herself and her daughters. “I said to my own daughter… I’m not your friend. I’ll never be your friend; I’m your mother. I had a mother who was a friend and we’re not going to do that.”
Howard and Drew also discussed the Free Brittany movement and New York Times documentary “Framing Britney Spears.” While the busy mom and host hasn’t yet seen the film, her heart went out to Britney as well as any other child celebrities forced to endure media scrutiny.
“I have so much empathy toward so many people,” Drew shared “I’m sure that people look on and think, ‘These party girls, these privileges, how dare they have feelings about any of this? They’ve put themselves out there, they’ve asked for this — it’s fair f%$king game,’ and I just go, ‘They’re humans. They’re just humans,’ and I have a lot of empathy.” She added. “It’s hard to grow up in front of people. It’s just hard.”
Yeah, er, we could tell!
Talk during the almost 50 minute interview eventually turned to Drew’s love life. Drew split from ex-husband Will Kopelman, the father of her two children in 2016. She told Howard of her struggles to stay healthy and sober after the split saying she “definitely turned to drinking and eating” but decided to seek help when she realized she was “slowly dying inside.” Rather than putting herself into treatment after falling off the wagon, Drew turned to her friends “who are real ass kickers” to keep her on the straight and narrow.
Drew has been candid about her reentry into the dating world on her talk show, even though it has been a bumpy ride. Recently on an episode of Dr. Phil, Drew explained she was stood up after finding a match on a celebrity dating ap.
Instead of selecting one of the ‘high-powered’ men, Drew swiped right on a comedy writer. It wasn’t so funny when he stood her up at the exact time they were supposed to meet- meaning Drew had gone through all the hair and make-up and choosing the outfit and the nerves! Speaking to comedienne, Nikki Glasser, Drew had lamented, “Like, ‘Can’t you be a jerk like an hour before?’ That would have been such a time saver.”
I guess it’s kind of nice to know it can happen to anyone, but in the same vein, if even Drew Barrymore is getting stood up, what chance do us mere mortals have? Other than someone who doesn’t show, Howard asked Drew what she’s not looking for. Responded the star,“[Someone] trying to change me.” She also listed her preferences in a partner as someone who’s confident, funny, and gainfully employed.
While Drew is down for a little romance, she’s very happy in her life right now. “I think I’m at the best place I’ve ever been, and it took me a long time to get here,” she said. “Life is messy, man, and I’m finally, like, really proud of who I am. That feels good.” We’re so happy for you Drew, you are an inspiration and as kick ass as the Charlie’s Angel you portrayed!
If you’d like to listen to Drew’s full interview with Howards Stern you can do so here http://siriusxm.us/2Mecy96
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