Turns out Cory Monteith was hardly a teen as clean as Finn Hudson. The Glee star has dropped hints about his checkered teenage years in the past, but in a new Parade magazine cover story, he reveals more than ever about his previous drug use and criminal record. “I’m lucky to be alive,” confessed Monteith, 29.
The Canada native, whose parents divorced when he was seven years old, said he was already skipping school, drinking, and smoking marijuana when he was 13. As his teenage years progressed, he admits, “I was out of control.” From pot to harder drugs, Monteith says he would try “Anything and everything … as much as possible. I had a serious problem.” The actor landed in rehab at age 19 after his family planned an intervention, but it didn’t take.
Soon enough, he was thieving to support his habit. “I stole a significant amount of money from a family member,” he recalls. “I knew I was going to get caught, but I was so desperate I didn’t care.” When the family member confronted him, Monteith decided to come clean — and get clean. He evaluated his life and shifted his priorities.
Less than a decade later, when he skyrocketed to fame playing the clean-cut high school quarterback, it may come as a shock to fans that Monteith was, in reality, a lot more like Puck than Finn. For those who have doubted Monteith’s acting ability, these revelations put the dopey BMOC in a new light. But Monteith is quick to point out the difference between himself and his on-screen persona. “I’m not Finn Hudson.”
Still, he wants to make sure that he can set a positive example for his fans. “I don’t want kids to think it’s okay to drop out of school and get high, and they’ll be famous actors, too … But for those people who might give up: Get real about what you want and go after it.”