Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing by Matthew Perry

Review by Nikki Maples

Growing up in this crazy place we call Earth, we tend to look for others who we feel like we can relate to. We look to them for guidance, love and advice on how to navigate through life. Sometimes that person may be a teacher, a grandparent, even a coworker and sometimes it may even be a character on a television show. That person for me was Chandler Bing, the late actor Matthew Perry. He was the character you could always count on to be there for you through and through. He was our friend when we needed him. And he needed a friend at a point or two on his own.

Matthew Perry is best known for his lovable, awkward persona of Chandler Bing and quickly rose to be a household favorite from the hit  tv sitcom, Friends (1994-2004). Could he be anymore relatable?

The memoir, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing written by Matthew Perry, was released November 1st, 2022. Matthew talks about his lifelong battle of addiction and his struggle to making it big in Hollywood.

At a very young age, Matthew struggled with divorcing parents and the feeling of that he was never good enough for anyone. He would touch on the subject in his memoir about how he felt it was so important to make people laugh. “To me, I felt like I was going to die if they didn’t laugh.” He felt that he needed to show that he could do something of importance to others and that he was validated.

I was very eager to read this memoir. As someone who grew up on the show and was heartbroken by the news of his passing, I wanted to read this book as a form of closure in a way. I was reminded how we all go through difficult parts of life and find it sometimes hard to get through the day. Perry reminded me that it’s not about where you end up, it’s how hard you work to fight your battles and come out stronger in the end. “I am filled with, energized by, the 'difference'… As I stand there, coffee in one hand and nothing in the other, and watch the distant waves in the ocean, I am realizing that I am feeling a wave of my own, inside me. Gratitude.”