Reflecting on his "surreal" public meltdown, Charlie Sheen says he's "not sure how he created such chaos"
Charlie Sheen has turned over a new leaf — and he’s determined to stick to his sobriety.
In an interview on ITV’s Loose Women, the actor, who said he’s been sober for a year and four months, opened up about his difficult past, including his drug and alcohol addition, his HIV-positive diagnosis and his infamous firing from Two and a Half Men.
“It feels awful. I can’t sit there and lie to you,” he said. “Some of it is very surreal. To this day, I am not sure how I created such chaos and wound up in that headspace. It’s as though there was some alien or demonic possession going on.”
Asked if he feels like the same person who went through that dark period, he said: “Not at all, not how I am existing and feeling today. I wish I could make a lot of it go away, but they wouldn’t call it the past if it wasn’t.”
On the moment he decided to get sober, Sheen recalled being too intoxicated to take his daughter to a meeting.
“I couldn’t get my daughter to an appointment that she had. I don’t drink and drive ever, I have never had a DUI,” he said. “I was like, ‘Wow, I am not even responsible enough to be available for my children’s needs.’ The next morning I woke up and was like, ‘Today is the day.’ “
The actor said he’s confident he won’t relapse because he’s already hit rock bottom.
“I don’t think there is anything left for me. There is no disaster left to engage,” he said. “I have a game plan and I stick to it. There is nothing left in that world, I exhausted it completely. The only thing left would be something catastrophic.”
Asked if sober life is lonely because he can no longer socialize with some of his former acquaintances, he said: “No, it’s a relief. One of my resolutions is no house guests, no hosting.”
In January 2011, Two and a Half Men went on hiatus when Sheen entered rehab. Shortly afterwards, the actor was fired after a public meltdown that included insulting creator Chuck Lorre. The next season, Sheen’s character was killed off and replaced by Ashton Kutcher, who played a billionaire businessman who buys Charlie’s house after his death until the show concluded in 2015.
“I think it wasn’t so much with what was going on with Two and a Half [Men] with the people that were there, they were doing their jobs and doing them very well,” he said. “I think people forget that I went through two divorces and had four children during Two and a Half [Men], that’s kind of a lot. The other thing is you have to park that stuff, you have to park the rot before you come to work. Because you have given them your word that you are there to do a job to the best of your abilities.”
“That I violated, but again, I didn’t go to prison, I didn’t kill anybody,” he added. “I did [do a lot of harm to myself]. This guy took the brunt of it.”
Sheen said in his recovery, he’s learned that actions speak louder than words.
“You get tired of apologizing for things that you can’t remember doing,” he said. “The amends can’t just be words, they have to be actions. It’s hard but not impossible. … It’s an ongoing thing. You make the amends when it is appropriate, it’s not about making them on your terms, it’s about approaching others on theirs.”
Sheen also opened up about his HIV-positive diagnosis and said he told his children about it before publicly revealing the news in 2015. (He shares daughters Lola, 13, and Sam, 14, with ex-wife Richards, 10-year-old twins Max and Bob with ex-wife Mueller and is also father to 34-year-old daughter Cassandra Jade Estevez from a previous relationship with his high school girlfriend Paula Speert.)
“I let all my kids know before I went on television with it and everybody has been very supportive of it,” he said. “My oldest daughter Cassandra, she is the one that took it the hardest, but I reassured her with the medicinal technology and the progress that has been made that Dad is going to be fine.”
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Last but not least, Sheen shared his thoughts on a potential Two and a Half Men reboot.
“I think as long as everybody involved is alive and kicking, there is definitely a possibility,” he said. “Of course [I would like it to come back] because there is a trend towards reboots these days and I think that would be one that folks might tune in for. It doesn’t have to go on for another five years, it would just be nice to do a couple of seasons and end it as it should have.”
And while he wasn’t there to plug any project in particular, Sheen did point out that there’s one thing he is promoting: a healthy mind.
“I essentially have nothing to promote today, but I thought about that and I do have something to promote. I am promoting sanity,” he said. “I am promoting a sense of nobility and a return to a more innocent place. Just gratitude and knowing that whatever comes next work-wise, the version I deliver will be spectacular.”
“I am sociopathically optimistic at times, some people call it delusional, but that’s al lright,” he added. “If I am not confident or optimistic about it, then no one else will be.”