Brad Pitt Made "Conscious Change" to Stop Using Drugs, Talks Happy Family Life With Angelina Jolie

By Rebecca Macatee
|  Tuesday, May 21, 2013  |  Updated 3:15 PM EDT
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Actor Brad Pitt

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Brad Pitt was Angelina Jolie's biggest supporter as she underwent and recovered from her double mastectomy.

But, he hasn't always been the family man he is today. In an interview in Esquire's June/July issue, the "World War Z" star opens up about his history with drugs and why he decided to move forward with his life.

"For a long time I thought I did too much damage--drug damage," he says. "I was a bit of a drifter. A guy who felt he grew up in something of a vacuum and wanted to see things, wanted to be inspired. I followed that other thing. I spent years f--king off. But then I got burnt out and felt that I was wasting my opportunity."

VIDEO: Pitt's "World War Z" viral clip offers dire warning

Then, Pitt says "about a decade ago" he made "a conscious change."

"It was an epiphany--a decision not to squander my opportunities," he says. "It was a feeling of, 'Get up.' Because otherwise, what's the point?"

PHOTO: Pitt gets back to work after Jolie goes public with health news

Now, the 49-year-old father of six is proud of the direction he's taken his life in. "I have a handful of close friends and I have my family and I haven't known life to be any happier," he says. "I'm making things. I just haven't known life to be any happier.

"I always thought that if I wanted to do a family, I wanted to do it big," he says. "I wanted there to be chaos in the house...There's constant chatter in our house, whether it's giggling or screaming or crying or banging. I love it. I love it. I love it. I hate it when they're gone. I hate it. Maybe it's nice to be in a hotel room for a day---'Oh, nice, I can finally read a paper.' But then, by the next day, I miss that cacophony, all that life."

PHOTOS: Pitt and Jolie's family life

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