Demi and Ashton. Picture: Jemal Countess/Getty Images
Demi and Ashton. Picture: Jemal Countess/Getty Images

Demi Moore’s troubled three marriages

Heading towards her 50th birthday, Demi Moore felt "completely alone".

Her children weren't speaking to her, her star-studded career and three marriages had failed and she weighed less than 44kg.

In her explosive new auto­biography, Inside Out, she writes: "I looked like I felt - destroyed."

This was not how it was all meant to turn out for the once-radiant star of movies such as St Elmo's Fire, Ghost, A Few Good Men, Striptease and Indecent Proposal.

In the 1990s she was the highest-paid female star in Hollywood and, with husband Bruce Willis, one half of acting royalty and mum to three beautiful girls.

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Now the 56-year-old has written the warts-and-all account of her life, including the failure of her 13-year marriage to Die Hard star Bruce.

She writes: "We had a whirlwind, truncated infatuation that morphed into a full-on family, all in our very first year. When reality set in, I don't know if we really knew each other."

They met at a premiere in 1987 and Bruce immediately swept Demi off her feet, showering her with attention and lavishing her with trips on private jets.

Bruce Willis, Rumer Willis and Demi Moore in 2011. Picture: Getty
Bruce Willis, Rumer Willis and Demi Moore in 2011. Picture: Getty

TROUBLESOME MOTHER

From the first moment, she thought of him as "so gallant, in his own boisterous way, a real gentleman".

Both had difficult childhoods in broken homes. And Bruce overcame a stutter, while Demi's teenage parents, from Roswell, New Mexico, were alcoholics whose stormy relationship saw them constantly splitting and reuniting.

 

Bruce and Demi were red carpet regulars in the 90s. Picture: Ke.Mazur/WireImage
Bruce and Demi were red carpet regulars in the 90s. Picture: Ke.Mazur/WireImage

Having come from nothing, Bruce - who by then had twice been nominated for an Emmy award for his TV series Moonlighting - loved to splurge his earnings.

Demi writes: "We would go to a restaurant and he would order three entrees and have a few bites of each, just because he could."

She had already been through a five-year marriage, to musician Freddy Moore, but when Bruce impulsively told her: "We should get married," while visiting Las Vegas, she jumped at the offer.

She got pregnant on their wedding night, November 21, 1987, and the following August gave birth to the first of their three girls, Rumer Willis. Scout and ­Tallulah followed over the next six years.

The family moved into a ranch in remote Hailey, Idaho, to keep their children out of the limelight, which was, "one of the best decisions Bruce and I ever made", she writes.

Demi also purged their life of her troublesome mother, Ginny, who had become increasingly difficult to handle.

This week there were headlines worldwide over Demi's claim in her book that Ginny had let a man rape her when she was 15, in return for $US500.

After Demi and Bruce got married in 1987, Ginny was arrested for drunk driving, took an overdose and sold stories about her and Demi's relationship.

 

Demi’s groundbreaking 1991 Vanity Fair cover. Picture: AP
Demi’s groundbreaking 1991 Vanity Fair cover. Picture: AP

When she then posed nude to mimic Demi's iconic 1991 Vanity Fair magazine pregnancy pose, Demi had had enough. She cut her from her life and ignored her for eight years.

She writes: "It was the healthiest thing I could do for myself, my girls and maybe even for Ginny."

Meanwhile, both Bruce and Demi were commanding pay cheques in the millions for their films. Yet Demi had a nagging feeling.

She noted that Bruce was always "proud" of her work, but she writes: "I don't know that he was always comfortable with the attention that came with it."

Before Rumer turned two, Bruce had announced: "I don't know if I want to be married."

Demi visited him on set for his 1991 film Hudson Hawk and writes that she had a suspicion he had "screwed around". When she then went back to work to film The Butcher's Wife, she thought Bruce was "furious" with her. It meant their pact of never going more than a fortnight apart followed by four days together would be impossible.

FAILING MARRIAGE

But when he returned home she immediately got pregnant again with Scout, halting any thoughts of splitting for the time being.

After Tallulah was born in 1994, Demi and Bruce made eight films each in two years, which she believes prolonged their failing marriage. She noticed a growing "ambivalence" on his part towards their marriage and worse, she began to see similar traits to those of her unreliable mother.

 

The couple, pictured here in 1996, made eight films each in just two years. Picture: AP
The couple, pictured here in 1996, made eight films each in just two years. Picture: AP

She writes: "They were both unpredictable and sometimes impulsive and that made me feel unsure of my footing.

"I never knew what mood he'd be in or whether his feelings for me would have changed since the day before."

For her own part, Demi believes she was so determined to be self-reliant that she "locked out" her husband.

In 1998 she reconciled with her dying mother and, at the same time, she and Bruce decided to separate. Losing them both left her feeling "totally wrung out", but the divorce would prove transformative.

Demi devoted herself to being a full-time mother, and with Bruce being the working breadwinner, she describes having "the most conventional family dynamic I'd ever known".

She was determined not to go off the rails during her divorce.

 

Demi goes naked on another magazine cover circa 1996 — this time, with husband Bruce.
Demi goes naked on another magazine cover circa 1996 — this time, with husband Bruce.

Early in her career, she said she "nearly burned a hole through my nostrils" snorting cocaine while filming her first movie in Brazil, and she was forced into rehab during the making of 1985 "Brat pack" film St Elmo's Fire.

Instead, her divorce therapy involved reading self-help books and collecting stuffed toys.

Bruce went on to marry English model Emma Heming in 2009 and the pair live a relatively quiet life with their two daughters.

It was Demi's love life that dominated the headlines.

'TRUCE WITH HER BODY'

 

Demi and Woody Harrelson in Indecent Proposal.
Demi and Woody Harrelson in Indecent Proposal.

The book delves into Demi's body confidence issues, which started when she was told to lose weight for her audition for the 1986 film, About Last Night.

She writes: "I felt a combination of sick, pit-of-my-stomach mortification and raw panic. And so began my process of trying to dominate and control my body." At one point she put a lock on her fridge to stop herself bingeing.

The prospect of doing sex scenes for 1993's Indecent Proposal - in which she starred with Robert Redford - sent her into a frenzy of dieting and exercising. Director Adrian Lyne was horrified at the result and told her to gain 5kg, saying: "I don't want you looking like a f***ing man."

It was after GI Jane in 1997 that she "finally reached a truce" with her body. She had bulked up for the fictional role of the first woman to train as a US Navy Seal, and afterwards decided to stop exercising and changed her eating habits.

 

'HEALED MY DEMONS'

 

At 40, Demi fell for actor Ashton Kutcher, 15 years her junior. She writes of how her "soulmate" would leave her Post-It notes telling her: "Remember you are magical."

During the first year of their whirlwind romance, they were so determined to have a baby despite Demi's age that they had her embryos frozen. This week she revealed a never-before-seen picture of a baby bump when she ­unexpectedly got pregnant naturally in 2003, aged 42.

Tragically, the pair lost the unborn baby at six months, a girl they had named Chaplin Ray.

Having been sober for 20 years, Demi had started drinking again, and blamed herself for the loss. The pair, who both followed the spiritual teachings of Kabbalah, then went through fertility treatment, but at each failure she found herself reliving Chaplin's death and went through a "terribly dark place".

Demi admits now that she "lost sight" of how much her girls still needed her during her quest to become a mum again. She also considered egg donors, even after Ashton had cheated on her. During their doomed six-year marriage she says he lured her into having threesomes and cheated a second time.

 

Demi has unveiled the dark secrets of her six-year marriage to Ashton Kutcher. Picture: Getty Images
Demi has unveiled the dark secrets of her six-year marriage to Ashton Kutcher. Picture: Getty Images

 

At one point, when Demi was hooked on booze and the painkiller Vicodin, Ashton shamed her with a picture he had taken of her looking worse for wear, with her head on a toilet. When she went cold turkey off the prescription drug, she writes that he didn't offer "any reinforcement or ­compassion".

Despite their split in 2011, Demi says she is grateful to Ashton - who is now married to Black Swan actress Mila Kunis - because the pain enabled them both to grow.

But after separating from the actor, Demi went through a tough spell. At a party she suffered a seizure, induced by inhaling nitrous oxide while smoking the synthetic cannabis drug Spice.

Her collapse made headlines, her daughters shunned her and she blamed it all on her "addiction" to Ashton.

She and her children barely spoke for three years. It was only after therapy and rehab that they ­reconciled. Now Demi believes that ­period of being alone, though tough at the time, has enabled her to "heal" her personal demons.

 

This story originally appeared on The Sun and is republished here with permission.


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