Mandy Moore details alleged Ryan Adams abuse: ‘I felt like I was drowning’

Mandy Moore and Ryan Adams attend The 2012 MusiCares Person Of The Year Gala Honouring Paul McCartney at Los Angeles Convention Center on Feb. 10, 2012, in Los Angeles, California.
Mandy Moore and Ryan Adams attend The 2012 MusiCares Person Of The Year Gala Honouring Paul McCartney at Los Angeles Convention Center on Feb. 10, 2012, in Los Angeles, California. Kevin Mazur/WireImage

Mandy Moore opened up about her former “unhealthy” relationship with Ryan Adams during a guest appearance on Marc Maron’s “WTF” podcast on Monday.

In a New York Times report published Feb. 13, Moore was one of seven women who came forward with allegations of abuse against her former husband Adams.

Moore was married to Adams from 2009 to 2016 and she went into detail about the alleged “unhealthy dynamic” between them.

READ MORE: Ryan Adams’ album release cancelled following sexual misconduct claims

“I was living my life for him,” Moore recalled. “It [was] an entirely unhealthy dynamic. I had no sense of self.”

She continued: “I felt like I was drowning. It was so untenable and unsustainable and it was so lonely. I was so sad. I was lonely with him.”

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“I knew this was not the person I was meant to be with,” Moore said of her ex-husband.

The This Is Us actress explained that she didn’t think her relationship could “sustain itself” if she was working full-time so she took on smaller projects due to Adam’s alleged dependency.

“I would do little jobs. It’s not like I completely stopped working. I would do things here or there, but it would become abundantly clear while I was working, things would completely fall apart at home,” she explained. “I couldn’t do my job because there was a constant stream of trying to pay attention to this person who needed me and wouldn’t let me do anything else.”

READ MORE: Ryan Adams, singer-songwriter, denies report he sent sexual messages to underage girl

She explained how her relationship with Adams began while she was on tour in Minneapolis in 2008, which was one year after her mother left her father for a woman she had been having an affair with.

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“When you feel out of control in a situation, [like] I can’t control my immediate family, and the fact that this particular situation blew us up in a way … I guess I kind of just thought, ‘I’ll create my own family,’” she said.

Moore said she was initially “smitten” by Adams “as a 23-year-old impressionable woman.” They were married the year after they met.

She said after “months and months and months” of crying, she decided to walk away from the marriage. She filed for divorce from Adams in January 2015 and it was finalized in June. She married Dawes frontman Tayler Goldsmith in November 2018.

She said once she finally decided to leave Adams, her career began to pick up again.

“Six months later, I got This Is Us,” Moore recalled.

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Moore and Maron did not reference the New York Times report during the podcast episode because it was recorded before the article was published.

The report said seven women have claimed singer-songwriter Adams offered to help them with their music careers but then turned things sexual, and he sometimes became emotionally and verbally abusive.

A 20-year-old female musician said Adams, 44, had inappropriate conversations with her when she was 15 and 16. Identified by her middle name Ava, she said that Adams exposed himself during a video call.

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Ava said Adams constantly questioned her about her age throughout the nine months they exchanged text messages. The report said she never showed him any identification, and he had pet names for her body parts.

“If people knew they would say I was like R Kelley lol,” he wrote to her via text in November 2014, when he was 40 and she was 16. R. Kelly has been accused of sexual misconduct with women and girls but has denied the allegations.

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“Mr. Adams unequivocally denies that he ever engaged in inappropriate online sexual communications with someone he knew was underage,” Andrew B. Brettler, Adam’s lawyer, told the Times.

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In the Times report, Moore said Adams was psychologically abusive toward her throughout their marriage.

She claimed Adams stalled her music career and told her, “‘You’re not a real musician, because you don’t play an instrument.'”

“His controlling behaviour essentially did block my ability to make new connections in the industry during a very pivotal and potentially lucrative time — my entire mid-to-late 20s,” 34-year-old Moore said to the Times.

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After the article was published, Adams tweeted Wednesday that “I am not a perfect man and I have made many mistakes.”

“To anyone I have ever hurt, however unintentionally, I apologize deeply and unreservedly,” he wrote. “But the picture that this article paints is upsettingly inaccurate. Some of its details are misrepresented; some are exaggerated; some are outright false. I would never have inappropriate interactions with someone I thought was underage. Period.”

He continued: “As someone who has always tried to spread joy through my music and my life, hearing that some people believe I caused them pain saddens me greatly. I am resolved to work to be the best man I can be. And I wish everyone compassion, understanding and healing.”

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Adams released his debut album in 2000 and has earned seven Grammy nominations. He famously covered Taylor Swift’s Grammy-winning 1989 album in 2015, a year after its release. He has also worked as a producer behind the scenes for acts like Willie Nelson and Jenny Lewis.

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse or is involved in an abusive situation, please visit the Canadian Resource Centre for Victims of Crime for help. They are also reachable toll-free at 1-877-232-2610.

— With files from the Associated Press