In advance of the release of This Is Me — on sale March 27 — Metz sat down with PEOPLE for her cover interview and admitted to feeling “scared,” specifically noting her family members’ reactions to the revelations.
“I’m really like nervous about it because this is sort of 37 years of my experiences. Some of them are great and some of them were really difficult, and a lot of them included people that I love,” Metz, 37, tells PEOPLE exclusively in this week’s cover interview.
To prepare for the book’s release, Metz says she “tried to sort of preempt the book to my family and, ‘This is what I’m talking about. I hope that you understand the process.’ My sister actually found something online last night and she was like, ‘I’m so upset. I can’t believe that this would be in the book.’ I’m like … ‘Just wait until the book comes and then find out the whole story.’ “
“There’s all these things coming up, which of course, were to be expected, but yeah, I’m nervous about it,” Metz shares. “I’m excited, but I’m also nervous because it’s very soul-baring and I feel very exposed and vulnerable. I suppose that’s sort of what I do, but it’s my life, it’s not Kate Pearson’s life. I have all sorts of things coming up.”
- For more from Metz, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday
Metz, who became an overnight sensation on NBC’s This Is Us — she stars as Kate Pearson, a triplet who struggles with her weight — admits that she is “concerned because I never want anybody to think that I spoke about something or spoke ill of them for any particular reason other than to show this evolution of the friendship or how this lesson changed me.”
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The actress, who shared personal stories that center on her family — including her single mother and allegedly abusive stepfather — also maintains that she had good intentions when opening up about her past.
“I would never throw anybody under the bus, because that’s not who I am. I just have to remind myself of that because I know why I wrote the particular stories or decided to tell these stories,” she says.
In a PEOPLE exclusive excerpt of This Is Me, Metz alleges that her stepfather — a man she calls Trigger — beat her and forced her to do humiliating weigh-ins as a teenager.
“I don’t remember why Trigger hit me the first time. He never punched my face. Just my body, the thing that offended him so much. He shoved me, slapped me, punched my arm. He would hit me if he thought I looked at him wrong. I remember being on the kitchen floor after he knocked me over, and I was begging to know what I did. He just shoved me hard with his foot,” she writes.
Trigger, though, is denying the allegations. “None of it’s true,” he told Entertainment Tonight on Wednesday. “I love her very much just like I always have and I treat her just like she’s one of mine. I want the best for her.”
With the release of her memoir nearing, Metz is hopeful that readers will “read the book in its entirety.”
“Then it will be very clear what my intentions were, but again, I cannot focus on what the reader’s going to think,” she says.
“Their perception is their reality, and so what they take from it and whoever takes whatever they take from it will be their perception, but I know that my intentions were good,” she adds. “It’s still uncharted territory for me.”