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Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir Audiobook

Original price was: $18.95.Current price is: $8.88.

(91002 customer reviews)



Audio Length

8.75 hours

Release Date

November 2022


Unabridged Audiobook


Instant Download




Original price was: $18.95.Current price is: $8.88.
Original price was: $32.00.Current price is: $5.70.
Original price was: $19.00.Current price is: $5.99.
Original price was: $69.95.Current price is: $20.57.
For 3 items

Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir by Matthew Perry is a candid and revelatory memoir about the actor’s life, his struggles with addiction, and his time on the hit sitcom Friends.
Perry begins by recounting his childhood, which was marked by his parents’ divorce and his own struggles with self-esteem. He then discusses his teenage years as a nationally ranked tennis player, and his transition to acting.
Perry’s rise to fame on Friends was meteoric, but his success came at a price. He quickly developed a dependency on alcohol and prescription drugs, and he spent many years in and out of rehab.
In the book, Perry shares the most intimate details of his addiction, including his darkest days and his greatest fears. He also talks about the support he received from his friends and family, and the strength he found to overcome his addiction.
Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing is an honest and inspiring memoir that offers a unique glimpse into the life of one of Hollywood’s most beloved actors. It is also a hopeful message for anyone struggling with addiction, showing that it is possible to recover and live a happy and fulfilling life.

Key takeaways from the book:

  • Addiction is a complex disease that can affect anyone, regardless of their success or wealth.
  • Recovery is possible, but it takes hard work and dedication.
  • It is important to have a strong support system in place when you are trying to recover.
  • There is no shame in asking for help.

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, there are many resources available to help. Please reach out to a trusted friend or family member, or contact a professional addiction treatment center.

Publisher Description

This program is read by the author. A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK BY TIME, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, GOODREADS,  AND MORE! The beloved star of Friends takes us behind the scenes of the hit sitcom and his struggles with addiction in this candid, funny, and revelatory memoir that delivers a powerful message of hope and persistence. Hi, my name is Matthew, although you may know me by another name. My friends call me Matty. And I should be dead. So begins the riveting story of acclaimed actor Matthew Perry, taking us along on his journey from childhood ambition to fame to addiction and recovery in the aftermath of a life-threatening health scare. Before the frequent hospital visits and stints in rehab, there was five-year-old Matthew, who traveled from Montreal to Los Angeles, shuffling between his separated parents; fourteen-year-old Matthew, who was a nationally ranked tennis star in Canada; twenty-four-year-old Matthew, who nabbed a coveted role as a lead cast member on the talked-about pilot then called Friends Like Us. . . and so much more. In an extraordinary story that only he could telland in the heartfelt, hilarious, and warmly familiar way only he could tell itMatthew Perry lays bare the fractured family that raised him (and also left him to his own devices), the desire for recognition that drove him to fame, and the void inside him that could not be filled even by his greatest dreams coming true. But he also details the peace hes found in sobriety and how he feels about the ubiquity of Friends, sharing stories about his castmates and other stars he met along the way. Frank, self-aware, and with his trademark humor, Perry vividly depicts his lifelong battle with addiction and what fueled it despite seemingly having it all. Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing is an unforgettable memoir that is both intimate and eye-openingas well as a hand extended to anyone struggling with sobriety. Unflinchingly honest, moving, and uproariously funny, this is the audiobook fans have been waiting for. A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books. Download and start listening now!


Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing is a raw, unflinching memoir that took courage to write. As it turns out, Matthew Perry has a lot of courage. He takes us through his addiction, his illness and his paralyzing loneliness. Somehow, during the course of his life, Matthew was able to turn his pain into comedic joy for others, but, he tells us, it was at a cost. Matthew takes us through his hell but doesnt wallow. Ultimately, this book is filled with hope for the future. If you want to know about who Matthew Perry is, stay away from the rags and read this. – Marta Kauffman, co-creator of the NBC sitcom Friends

91002 reviews

91002 reviews for Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir Audiobook

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  1. Verified owner Thomas Cael

    I am a fan of Friends and Perry. Getting to know more about his life has taught me more about the actor, the man, but also helped me reflect on my life as well, at different levels, but the book is written in such a simple way that it was easy for me to draw parallels with my own person/life.
    The book made me go through all sorts of emotions and this is how I define a good book.

  2. Verified owner Lisa Busby

    Although, at times, the writing is a little confusing and the ‘Keanu’ comment really should have been taken out by Matthew’s editor, I found this book compelling and difficult to put down.
    This is an honest account of addiction and I applaud Mr Perry for bravely sharing his life in this way. Having known people with addiction, who sadly did not make it, I am grateful that this book shines a light, not only for other addicts (therefore showing you are not alone and even the rich and famous can have their lives ruined by drugs and alcohol) but also to the judgemental who have no idea what addiction is.
    I feel sad that he has gone through so much and, what should have been an amazing experience i.e Friends, was overshadowed by an intense loneliness and foreboding. And yet, he still battles on (how incredible addicts are each day they say no) and aims to help others because that’s what life is about.
    This is not a literary masterpiece but it is, I believe, more important than that because it is an honest account of a man’s battle through life.

  3. Verified owner California Dreaming

    I’ll admit, I rarely watched “Friends” when episodes first aired. My wife started binge watching it a couple years ago or so, probably during the pandemic, and so I started watching it with her. I do think that I was a little too hard on the show though as I always thought that it was a bit of a “Seinfeld” “rip-off.” In reality there are enough differences in the shows that now, after watching the entire series of each, I’ve relaxed my criticism. A bit.

    And I rarely read autobiographies, or what people usually call “memoirs” nowadays. I usually am reading true-crime books, in particular those about serial killers. I did read “C’mon, Get Happy: Fear and Loathing on the Partridge Family Bus” (CGH) from David Cassidy in 2021 and I actually liked Mr. Cassidy LESS after reading his memoir. I kind of wish I wouldn’t have read CGH and just remembered him instead from his time on the show. It’s just that I found Mr. Cassidy to be a bit of a braggart while reading and while I finished CGH I was struggling to even care towards the end. I’m guessing that Susan Dey felt the same. Ahem.

    Now, rarely does Matthew Perry “brag” during “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing: A Memoir” (FLB) about himself. He does discuss how much money he made during filming of “Friends,” and I don’t have a problem with that, mostly because he discusses how David Schwimmer actually was instrumental in negotiating a great deal for the entire cast and not just for Mr. Schwimmer. In reality Mr. Perry is far more self-deprecating in FLB than Mr. Cassidy is in CGH. Mr. Perry doesn’t seem to hide much when it comes to his struggles with addiction and if he does underplay it, well, he must be REALLY bad. Mr. Perry discusses how he was taking up to 55 pain killers a day and that is extreme. For those who don’t know, pain killers tend to dry you out and slow down digestion so I have no idea how someone could take that many for any length of time and survive.

    Well, Mr. Perry almost didn’t survive.

    Mr. Perry was rushed by a friend from one of his many stints in rehab to the hospital and the people running the rehab facility tried to stop him. If they had been successful Mr. Perry surely would’ve died. Heck, he still should’ve died in the hospital even though he had probably the best care that money could buy. From memory he said that only “two percent of people survive on the machine required to keep him alive,” and I think he also called it a “Hail Mary.”

    Overall I really liked FLB and I actually read it in one day. As a matter of fact I couldn’t sleep last night and kept picking up my Kindle device and would continue reading. Usually readers might say, “I couldn’t put it down!” but I might say, “I couldn’t leave it down.” Over and over I picked up my device, opened the Kindle app, and continued from my last bookmark. Luckily for me Kindle apps save the bookmark for me and that’s only one of the reasons I tend to almost only read digital. I will buy a paperback or a hardcover version but only if I MUST read a book and there is no digital version.

    But still FLB is not a “perfect book,” far from it. Towards the end I think that Mr. Perry starts to repeat himself and I got the feeling that he was on a tight deadline and just hammered out the last few chapters. I don’t know if he first created an outline — I think that all authors should do so at an early phase in writing — but I think a good outline would’ve really helped create a more polished effort. It’s also the case that Mr. Perry has a tendency to use too many parentheticals and that becomes a bit of a distraction for the reader.

    Not that it bothers me but it might bother some readers: Mr. Perry does discuss religion, or at least God, quite a bit towards the end. If religion is a turnoff, I think that FLB may not be for you. Mr. Perry does seem to think that God helped keep him alive, maybe even helped him break some addictions, and that is fine by me. I can’t prove it either way, and it is Mr. Perry’s memoir, so he has a right to think and write whatever he chooses. Personally, I appreciate his honesty.

    Mr. Perry does admit going into open houses and swiping pain meds from home sellers and that reminded me a lot of Ryan Leaf. I think that Mr. Leaf used to do the same thing and it got that ex-NFL player quite a few years in prison for it. From a legal standpoint if I were Mr. Perry, and I were writing a memoir, I think I might not have disclosed this. I am not a lawyer and I don’t know what legal troubles it could cause him now.

    There has been quite a bit of noise about how Mr. Perry tends to “kiss and tell” and I think that’s overblown a bit. He does discuss how he and Valerie Bertinelli made out within just a few feet of Eddie Van Halen, after Mr. Van Halen had passed out from drinking too much wine. Hey, I guess I’ve been there myself so I won’t judge. Um, from Mr. Van Halen’s perspective and not necessarily from Mr. Perry’s. But Mr. Perry doesn’t really dwell on it too much. I can understand how Ms. Bertinelli feels about the disclosure although of course Mr. Van Halen is no longer with us. If Mr. Van Halen were still alive I believe that Mr. Perry probably wouldn’t even bring it up. Just a guess.

    Well, if you’re a fan of “Friends” and Matthew Perry, and you like to read memoirs, I’ll give a fairly strong recommendation for “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing.” If you don’t fit that criteria perhaps you might want to read something else. But if you’re a fan of David Cassidy from “The Partridge Family” I’ll recommend you pass on his memoir. Sometimes it’s better to only remember the good things about your heroes, after all.

  4. Verified owner Veronica R Ewing

    What a shock to lose such a talented and funny actor so young. I know when this memoir first came out, a lot of people had a lot of not very nice things to say about Matthew Perry, but I think they didn’t get it. This man had severe childhood trauma and abandonment issues that he never processed, and he was a drug addict. He really bares his soul here in this book. I have always loved Matthew Perry and I was still love him, even after reading his memoir. I’m so sad that he never was able to permanently beat his demons. He was a talented and funny actor, and not just in Friends.

    I hope he is resting peacefully now. After 50 years of no sleep, here is hoping the eternal one also comes with an amazing view where he can see how much the world really did love him.

  5. Verified owner P. Huffman

    I just finished Mathew’s book. I did not realize until I was almost done with his story that it could have been my father’s story accept, my father died after getting septic from colon cancer surgery. He too had a fistula and they gave him liquids which spilled out and killed him. Dad drank, smoked, and took all the same drugs Mathew did. My Dad rejected AA because of step two. My Dad had an irrational fear of “insanity”. My father saw shrinks and they gave him drugs to treat the fear and anxiety. My Dad had seven children with four different woman and many woman on the side. Mathew, my Dad and myself were abandoned at a critical time when we were vulnerable children. I think my Dad, Mathew and I were and are driven by the desire to have that feeling of safety and comfort we lost early in life if it ever really existed. Maybe we are trying to find that feeling of safety and comfort we imagine only exists for others. I also believe that that ‘feeling’ in the gut of anxiety and fear can be about a screwed up digestive track made worse by relationships, drugs, alcohol and cigarettes. Relationships, drugs, alcohol and cigarettes cause and treat the discomfort of fear and anxiety. These substances and behaviors seem to bring relief but only for a moment and then they make it worse. I think the absence of depression and anxiety can be from the absence of an irritable bowel and peace of mind. Mathew was born with colic his stomach was a problem from the start.
    Oxy is what blew up Mathew’s colon. The warm honey feeling he describes from the oxy paralyzes the gut bringing on depression and anxiety. At one point Mathew did sixty pills a day. My Dad suffered from Oxy. I experienced it too.

    All this stuff impacts mood. Depression, fear, anxiety. Fear of depression, anxiety and fear. The same feelings of abandonment, fear and anxiety a small child feels [I felt] when I became aware I was abandoned. These feelings are alive and well in Mathew’s and my body and they can be triggered by ‘something happening good or bad’ I don’t like to leave my house because just pulling out of my driveway is stressful.

    After reading the book I can better understand myself and my Dad. I was not present for my life and I mistreated the people I love while seeking relief from my addiction/discomfort. I even became co-dependent in recovery by trying to replace the substances with gurus. I too had the spiritual experience that made me feel completely loved and free from my insanity. It lasted until I tried to talk about it with other people who did not “get it”. I was distracted by their lack of appreciation for what I was saying.

    After reading this book I feel like I have been in rehab for a week. I see my disease better. Mathew Perry lived the unbelievable nightmare of mental illness and lived to tell about it. We focus on the substance when that substance is really just an attempt to treat the real problem. Is self-awareness of the core issue enough to free oneself from the intolerable agony of having paralyzing feelings of being discarded and fearing it will happen again and again. Even if only just by the president of the PTA. Isolation is the only way I knew to protect myself from fulfilling the prophecy my sister made to me. She said I would never have any friends. I was eight years old. She was nine. I believed her. I was all alone on Rancho Drive. I had no friends not even my sister. Just the word “friends” can trigger my discomfort. No matter how many people I call friend I can not dispel that belief. The big secret I carry is I believe I have no value. When people treat me as though I have no value I want to die. Mathew said it annihilated him to be left. Annihilated describes the feeling I want to avoid the most. Until now I could not think of a word strong enough to convey my discomfort. Annihilation feels right. Sadly, whenever I risked talking about this belief, I was told to “get over it”. That would be fine accept it is who I think I am. Can I just get over it?
    What or how would I know if I were over it?
    “I want God to always be there for me now, whenever I clear my channel to feel his awesomeness.”
    I hope you read the book.

  6. Verified owner Frequent Shopper

    For such a tragic story, Matthew’s writing is inspiring, interesting and told with a sense of humor that does not go unnoticed. I literally could not put this book down once I began reading it. He so obviously has such a good heart and has tried so hard to beat his addictions. I was rooting for him and sympathizing for him and his family the whole way through. Lots of lessons here about mental health and addictions that are truly out of the sufferer’s control. I have friends and family that have fought these demons and it was insightful to me. I admire Matthew for his courage in revealing his life’s battles and his determination to help others and it saddens me that he had such a hard road. I had put off leaving a review because of being too busy. Finding out that he passed away last night was so shocking and left me so sad and wishing I had taken the time to do it. Rest in Peace Matthew.

  7. Verified owner L. Boxleiter

    Matthew Perry’s memoir about his addictions is brutally honest in both emotional and physical detail. Surely, anyone dealing with addiction will see the elements of their own illness in the details of Perry’s experience. That he appears to have made it out the other side to a place of some peace and calm is a miracle: all the more poignant that it came only a year before his heartbreaking death.

  8. Verified owner Charlotte Hill

    “Friends” gave me a lot of comfort during various hardships and losses in my life, particularly Matthews character, Chandler. This book goes through his life, struggles with addiction, identity, and the meaning of it all. As someone who struggles with addiction I found this very relatable and helpful. Thank you for helping me, Matthew, still now in different ways, in different stages of my life. Rest easy.

  9. Verified owner Kris hadlock

    At this point I had to buy the book but I also got the audio so marty could read it to me and I could laugh and cry one last time!!!

  10. Verified owner Rose Mary RN

    Loved Lisa Kudrows prelude A very nice surprise.Beautifully written,honest,raw,hopeful,sad,happy and now he is gone. Rest in Love.
    Rose Mary RN

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