‘I Did It To Manage My Anxieties’


Former President Bill Clinton said in a new interview that anxieties and stress were at the heart of his affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

The former president’s comments are part of a documentary series on Hulu called “Hillary,” which focuses on the life of Hillary Clinton. The series begins airing Friday. The U.K. Daily Mail reported that it had previewed the series.

During the series, Clinton said Lewinsky was a distraction from the pressures of being president.

“You feel like you’re staggering around, you’ve been in a 15-round prize fight that was extended to 30 rounds and here’s something that will take your mind off it for a while, that’s what happens,” he said.

“Because there, whatever life — not just me. Everybody’s life has pressures and disappointments, terrors, fears of whatever,” he said. “Things I did to manage my anxieties for years. I’m a different, totally different person than I was, a lot of that stuff 20 years ago.”

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Clinton said he feels remorse over the affair.

“Maybe it’s just getting older but I hope it was also going through a lot of this. But whatever, what I did was bad but it wasn’t like — how can I think about the most stupid thing I could and do it.

“It’s not a defense, it’s an explanation. I feel awful,” he said.

The former president also discussed Lewinsky directly.

Do you think even less of Bill Clinton after this explanation?

“I feel terrible about the fact that Monica Lewinsky’s life was defined by it, unfairly I think. Over the years I’ve watched her trying to get a normal life back again but you’ve got to decide how to define normal,” he said.

The segment brought about intense reactions on Twitter.

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The series includes a joint interview in which both Clintons talk about the former president’s revelation of the affair to his wife.

“I went and sat on the bed and talked to her. I told her exactly what happened, when it happened. I said I feel terrible about it. We’ve been through quite a bit in the last few years. I said I have no defense, it’s inexcusable what I did,” he said.

“I was just devastated,” Hillary Clinton said. “I could not believe it. I was so personally just hurt and I can’t believe this, I can’t believe you lied.”

“We saw a counselor,” she said, noting that there were “painful, painful discussions.”

“Counseling was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do but it was necessary,” he said, adding that his wife and daughter deserved it “and I needed it.”

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