Great Britain

Mena Suvari reveals battle with meth in emotional new memoir

Mena Suvari has opened up about her teenage battle with drug addiction in her new memoir.

An extract from the book, The Great Peace: A Memoir, appeared in Cosmopolitan today (27 July).

In the extract, Suvari, who starred in films including American Beauty and American Pie, describes “living a double life” as she struggled with addictions while auditioning for parts and trying to carry on with her school work.

“Slowly but surely it became my life. And then it took over my life,” Suvari says of the addiction which began in her early teenage years.

Suvari continued: “The hours I was at school were spent thinking about getting out of school and doing some lines. I stayed up until late at night, slept a couple hours, then repeated the day. Before long I was pulling out my small gold lacquered butterfly embossed compact mirror and snorting a line in the school bathroom during a break.”

She writes about her experiences with methamphetamine: “A part of meth made me hyper-aware, but there was that other part that was like the dark side of the road, and it led directly to paranoia. I spent a lot of the night waiting to hear whether anyone was going to knock on my bedroom door. While I maintained my grades, my health suffered. My entire back broke out in acne. I'd always had perfect skin. I knew it was the meth.”

“Between the ages of twelve and twenty, I was the victim of repeated sexual abuse,” Suvari says, going on to allege that she was raped by a friend when she was 12 years old.

Suvari went on to detail further alleged abuses in several relationships with older men.

“I still did everything asked of me. Schoolwork. Auditions. Sex,” she continued. “Only I had to know how f***** up I was getting every day. I thought I could, and should, suffer in silence. This was obviously my fate. I prayed someone would throw me a lifeline. I was ready every single day to be rescued. It never happened.”

The Great Peace: A Memoir is available now via Hachette Books.

You can find more information and advice for people affected by sexual assault and abuse at Rape Crisis or you can call the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247.

To find support for drug addiction near you, visit the website for Frank. You can also call the charity’s 24/7 helpline on 0300 123 6600, text 82111 or send an email.

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