On Sept. 16, the actor-turned-musician appeared on the NBC morning show to perform his single “Go 4 It,” but wound up defending his sobriety.
The child star, now 45, received a tremendous amount of backlash for his performance with some vicious commenters implying that he was back on drugs or drinking again — but that was far from the truth.
“There’s nothing in this world that would ever make me do cocaine or heroin or any of that stuff ever again,” he tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue. Feldman insists he’s been sober for over 25 years.
And one of the motivators for his sobriety is his 12-year-old son Zen, whom he shares with his ex-wife Susie.
- For much more from Feldman, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE on newsstands Friday
“That’s where my love is and where my heart is,” Feldman says of Zen. “There’s no time to mope around or to be depressed, because I have to be a positive influence on him. That’s what’s most important.”
“I look at his beautiful smiling face and I say, ‘I’ve got to stay strong for him,’ ” he adds. “No matter how mean and awful people can be, I can’t let that affect me.”