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Pamela Anderson says Tommy Lee divorce was 'most difficult' time in her life: 'I was crushed'

Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson during 1995 GRAMMY Awards - A&M Party in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Pamela Anderson with Tommy Lee at the 1995 Grammy Awards. (Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)

Pamela Anderson says her marriage to Tommy Lee was "ruined" by the release of their infamous sex tape.

In an excerpt of the Baywatch alum's new memoir, Love, Pamela, obtained by People magazine, she writes about falling for and marrying the Mötley Crüe drummer in 1995. She said the theft and release of their stolen honeymoon tape put pressure and stress on their relationship and led to their dramatic uncoupling.

"My relationship with Tommy may have been the only time I was ever truly in love," wrote Anderson, who was married to Lee from 1995 to 1998 followed by Kid Rock ​(2006-2007)​, Rick Salomon ​(2007-2008, which was annulled) and​ ​​(2014-2015),​ Jon Peters ​(2020-2020, though not legally)​ and Dan Hayhurst ​​(2020-2022).

After eloping on a Cancun beach shortly after meeting — with the bride in a bikini and groom in boardshorts — "we just wanted to have babies and be together forever," the Playboy cover star wrote. Of that era, "We had fun and our rule was no rules."

CANCUN, MEXICO - FEBRUARY 19:  Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee get married February 19, 1995 on the beach in Cancun, Mexico as fans watch nearby.  (Photo by James Aylott /Getty Images)
Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee get married on the beach in Cancun in February 2005. (Photo: James Aylott /Getty Images)

The same year, a 54-minute home video made by the newlyweds was stolen from a safe in their house, edited down to the eight-minutes of sex scenes and distributed. They fought it, for years, in a lawsuit, but it was already all over the internet. They never made money from the sale.

"It ruined lives, starting with our relationship — and it's unforgivable that people, still to this day, think they can profit from such a terrible experience, let alone a crime," wrote Anderson, who has never watched it and shaded Hulu's Pam & Tommy for it's retelling of the story last year.

The stolen video put extra attention and unwanted stress on the couple, who were just trying to navigate the ups and downs of newlywed life. Anderson had a miscarriage in 1995. They went on to have their two sons: Brandon Thomas Lee, in 1996, and Dylan Jagger Lee, in 1997.

Actress Pamela Anderson Lee (L) looks on as husband, musician Tommy Lee holds their son, Brandon Thomas Lee, above the cement plaque where Tommy Lee's rock group
Pamela Anderson looks on as her husband Tommy Lee holds their son Brandon as Mötley Crüe is inducted into Hollywood's RockWalk in 1997. (Photo: Getty Images)

In 1998, Lee was arrested on spousal assault charges with Anderson getting an emergency order of protection. He made a plea deal and was sentenced to 180 days in jail as well as community service.

In the book, Anderson wrote about the incident. She said while she held 7-week-old Dylan in her arms and 1-year-old Brandon played nearby, "Tommy ripped Brandon off me and threw me and Dylan into a wall." She said she panicked and called 911.

"Our hell began," wrote Anderson, who filed for divorce the next day, citing irreconcilable differences. The divorce was finalized that year. (It was the second time she filed for divorce after rescinding a filing in 1996.)

"The divorce from Tommy was the hardest, lowest, most difficult point of my life," Anderson wrote. "I was crushed. I still couldn't believe that the person I loved the most was capable of what had happened that night. We were both devastated, but I had to protect my babies."

The famous pair ended up getting back together after the divorce and Lee served his jail time. They were off and on, around their various other relationships, through the 2000s.

Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson during Rokbar Hollywood Launch Party - Red Carpet at Rokbar in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson at Rokbar Hollywood Launch Party in 2005. They continued to have a hot and cold romance after their divorce. In 2015, she called him "the love of my life. We had a wild and crazy beginnings that was too much for both of us.” (Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)

As for their relationship today, she said they "check in, every once in a while," adding that Lee, who is married to fourth wife Brittany Furlan, "is the father of my kids and I'm forever grateful."

Anderson relocated to her hometown of Ladysmith, British Columbia in 2020. A brief pandemic marriage to a construction worker, who was renovating her home, ended in early 2022. She told People she lives "a more romantic life now that I'm alone than I did in relationships... I'm sure it would be lovely if someone else was in my life and wanted the same thing but I've just never met them. It's usually about catering to them, and there has to be a balance."

Anderson's memoir — titled Love, Pamela — as well as her Netflix doc, Pamela, A Love Story, will both be released on Jan. 31.