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Columbus Short Admits to Cocaine Use, Causing His Life to Spiral Out of Control Before Being Fired from 'Scandal'

by Cate Meighan   Dec 11, 2014 11:16 AM EST

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Columbus Short has had a life-altering year, as he began it starring on Scandal, one of prime time's top dramas, and is wrapping it up by coming clean about his drug use. Short made headlines for a bar fight as well as alleged domestic violence against his then-wife Tuere Short and quickly found himself fired and divorced. In April, Short confirmed that he would not be returning to Scandal for a fourth season and graciously wished his former cast mates the best.

On Wednesday, Dec. 10, the actor appeared on Access Hollywood to discuss what unraveled him.

"I was struggling with drugs. I had a lot on my plate, and you know, I was using unhealthy ways to kind of self-medicate and deal with a lot of heavy-duty stuff in my life. I was doing cocaine and drinking a lot, and trying to balance a 16-hour work schedule a day, and a family, and I just lost myself back then."

Short also says the suicide of his best friend, Lee Thompson Young, sent him into a downward spiral because he simple did not know how to handle it. He also admits that his friends from the hit ABC show tried their best to cover for and support him ... until his behavior went too far.

"They protected me, and they held me down. And that was one of the real reasons — they just wanted me to get my stuff together. Sometimes the bottom has to be dropped out for you to really get it. So I moved to Atlanta. I've been living there for the last five months, five-and-a-half months, and it's just been great. It's been life-changing," says Short.

While the actor says the change has done him a world of good, he is not trying to hide his ultimate wish: being able to return to his television family on Scandal. That could prove to be a bit tricky, since Short's character was killed off at the end of last season, but with Shonda Rhimes in control, anything is possible.

Would you like to see Short return to the hit show now that he has gotten his life together, or do you think that in order to stay clean maybe it is in Short's best interests to stay away? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.

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