7 Celebs Whose Addiction Shocked Us
*not an addict
It seems as though celebrities and addiction go hand-in-hand. But, there are some celebs that are doing so extremely well that they seem to have escaped this fate. Think again. Here are 7 celebs whose addiction shocked us.
I was surprised to find out that Oprah Winfrey – the media mogul and one of the most famous celebrities all-around, once struggled with crack cocaine – back in her 20s. “I can’t think of anything I wouldn’t have done for [it],” Oprah spontaneously admitted during a 1995 episode of her show. In a later TV interview, Winfrey gave some insight, saying she realized her addiction was more about the relationship than the drug: “I was more addicted to the boyfriend than I was to the drugs.”
Before the butter beer, Harry Potter’s Daniel Radcliffe vice was whisky, which he began to rely on during the filming of the sixth Harry Potter movie in 2009. “There were a few years there when I was just so enamored with the idea of living some sort of famous person’s lifestyle that really isn’t suited to me,” the actor said in an interview with GQ. Radcliffe says that he hasn’t had a drink since August of 2010. “As much as I would love to be a person that goes to parties and has a couple of drinks and has a nice time—that doesn’t work for me,” he said.
Jada Pinkett-Smith has said that her wakeup call was when she found herself on the couch with two empty wine bottles. Up until then, she had become quite the heavy drinker. She completed an alcoholism treatment program and hasn’t had a drink in over a decade. She credits her husband, Will Smith, with giving her the support she needs.
Perhaps Baldwin’s addiction isn’t that well-known because it was something he struggled with in the budding part of his career. The year was 1983 and, as the flourishing star drove down the Santa Monica Freeway with a plastic cup full of wine, he had a moment of clarity. “I went, ‘I don’t see anybody else in their car with a plastic take out container filled with ice and wine. They’re drinking coffee; they’re drinking Diet Coke. They’re not drinking wine,’” he wrote in the aptly-named book, Moments of Clarity. Baldwin’s addiction wasn’t just to wine; he was also quite fond of other drugs and video games. Baldwin was approaching his 27th birthday when he decided to join a support group where he says he met God. “God was a black, 65-year-old retired postal worker named Lenny,” he wrote. There have been occasional relapses but, today, Baldwin has stayed clean.
Mary J. Blige
Known as the “Queen of Hip-Hop Soul,” Mary J. Blige has been open about her depression, alcoholism, and other substance abuse. She got help from substance abuse and alcoholism treatment and later wrote a record called My Life that details her struggles with addiction and an abusive relationship. The record went triple platinum.
Benjamin Franklin battled many a health issue, from gout to kidney stones, for the better part of his life for which he sought relief with the drug laudanum. A popular “cure” for just about every ailment in the late 18th century, laudanum is a mixture of alcohol and opium. Franklin was a full-blown laudanum addict at the time of his death, at the age of 84. Although today, we would consider this a pretty serious addiction, during Franklin’s era “opium dependence was considered to be mostly harmless, like addiction to tobacco,” according to the book “Illegal Drugs.”
Perhaps best known for her roles in Glee, Best in Show, and 40 Year-Old Virgin, comedian and actress Jane Lynch, got sober in 1991. She has joked that her vice was light beer but, got honest and realized that her drinking had gotten out of control. In her memoir Hyperion Voice, Lynch talks about her struggles with alcoholism.
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