In an interview, Penn Badgley discussed how actress Blake Lively “saved” him from alcohol and drugs while they were together.

Lively is now famously married to actor Ryan Reynolds, with whom she shares 4 children with. But before this, she was with Badgley for 3 years, who she met on the set of Gossip Girl from 2007 to 2012.

Badgley is well-known for playing Dan Humphrey in the teen drama Gossip Girl and more recently Joe Goldberg in the thriller You on Netflix. He garnered six Teen Choice Award nods for Gossip Girl, and he won Saturn Award and MTV Movie and TV Award nominations for You.

And it seems like Lively helped the actor in more ways than one during his time with her on set. He explained to Variety in a recent interview: “Like anybody who experiences some degree of fame and wealth, I was presented with the universal truth that not only does it not make your life better or easier, it actually can greatly complicate things, and make you quite unhappy.

“I was never anything that I would define as su*****l at all, but I was certainly in despair.

“It had to do with ‘Do I matter? Do I matter? Does anything matter?’ These questions do inform how we feel.

“The answer that I came upon was ‘Yes.’ I think we all have to come to that. I don’t know how you could come to ‘No’ and be happy, so we all have to come to that ‘Yes’ somehow. Probably repeatedly.”

When asked if some of this “dark undercurrent” was brought on by or dealt with via substance misuse, Badgley replied that Lively prevented him from going down this path.

“To be honest, I never struggled with substance,” he said.

“Blake didn’t drink, and I think our relationship in some ways saved me from forcing myself to go down that road.”

Lively has previously explained why she doesn’t drink, sharing with InStyle: “For me, I don’t drink because I don’t like the effects of alcohol, but I like being a part of it. I like being social, I like people coming together.

“Interestingly, I found that sometimes not drinking — it was a little alienating.

“Maybe it’s just in your own head, but you don’t feel a part of it.”

Speaking about coming out of that despair, Badgley said: “I was thinking a lot about social change, social action, social transformation — but also my own transformation, my own change.”

Penn was drawn to the teachings of the Baha’i faith, which is based on the idea of the unity of all people, and turned to it after becoming preoccupied with his “social transformation.”

“I thought to myself, If I really want to participate in the betterment of the world, I think that I should become a Baha’i,” he said, explaining he felt this was “the most committed pathway from individual transformation to social transformation.”

This might come as quite a surprise to fans. What do you make of his comments?

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