The last two years have taken a toll on people globally. The term “pandemic drinking” reared its head, with many turning to alcohol to fill too much time at home, relieve stress and forget the state of the world. Supermodel Bella Hadid is the latest celebrity to take an introspective look at her own relationship with alcohol and admit she has a better lifestyle.
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Hadid isn’t the only celebrity to stumble in her sobriety. Like ordinary people, celebrities face stressors and situations that challenge their commitment to staying sober. Instead of feeling shame if they relapse, these celebrities picked themselves up and recommitted to their sobriety, remembering that relapse is part of recovery.
In an interview with InStyle MagazineHadid talks about her unhealthy relationship with alcohol, how it has affected her depression and anxiety, and how she has “made taking care of my brain my top priority.”
“Although I rarely get ‘drunk’ anymore, I’ve completely stopped drinking hard alcohol… I’ve learned what my body can and can’t handle.”
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Hadid worked closely with Bloom, a non-alcoholic energy drink, in creating the perfect combination to help others who may not drink but want a healthy alternative to rosé. Plus side? Hangover over.
Macklemore revealed that he had been sober since 2008 and in the summer of 2020, when we were all confined to our houses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he, like many people, turned to alcohol to cope with stress , boredom , and anxiety from this period of time.
In an interview with people in January 2022 he said: “It was really painful for myself and for the people who loved me. I stopped doing the job,” he said at the time. “When I have to be still and exist in my own head, that’s where my disease lives… [But] I’m like, ‘You know what? I don’t need to pretend I’m some perfect dude in recovery. I’m not at all, and there’s no shame in it.”
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The rapper posted a video on his @mackelmore Tik Tok account where he admitted that he had relapsed. Since that video, however, he has been sober again for 694 days – a full year and a half. It’s an achievement he can be proud of. Addiction recovery is one day. It is a disease and should be treated as such in any approach to sobriety.
Robert Downey Jr.
Robert Downey Jr. had an infamous struggle with drugs, alcohol and sobriety. He was arrested several times on drug charges from 1996 to 2001. He was repeatedly found in possession of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana (before it became legal in California). He checked into a rehab clinic several times and after he got out, he relapsed again and again. In April 1996, he was pulled over for speeding in Los Angeles and at the time was in possession of heroin, cocaine and a loaded handgun. He was arrested.
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When he was released a month later, he was high on drugs and went into his neighbor’s house and slept in their bed. He received three years of probation and had to submit to regular court-ordered drug tests. He failed one of these tests and was sent to prison for six months in 1997.
In 1999 it happened again and he was sentenced to three years in prison. He has been sober since at least 2003 and credits his wife with helping him get and stay sober. Since Downey Jr. has been sober, he has resurrected his career playing Iron Man in the hit franchise, among many other roles.
Demi Lovato has struggled with drugs and alcohol since she was a child. Lovato’s first trip to rehab was in 2010. They entered a sober house in 2013 to deal with their drug and alcohol problems, as well as their eating disorder and bipolar disorder. In 2018, Lovato announced that they had been sober for six years through her ballad “Sober.” A month after the song’s release, Lovato was rushed to the hospital after an overdose nearly killed them.
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They were in the hospital for two weeks and then in rehab for three months. During an episode of the YouTube series dancing with the devil Lovato said, “I’ve had three strokes, I’ve had a heart attack. The doctors told me I had five to 10 minutes left. Today, the Lovatos call themselves the “California Sobers” because they drink moderately and smoke marijuana.
Miley Cyrus struggled with drugs and alcohol, but was six months sober as of June 2020 and feeling great. And then the pandemic lockdown began and life for anyone, even a rich superstar, came to a standstill.
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In an interview with Elle UK, the ‘Wrecking Ball’ singer said: “I like a lot of people, to be completely honest, during the pandemic they went down… and I would never sit here and go, ‘I’ve been sober as hell.’ She turned to alcohol to lose weight during lockdowns. Fortunately for Miley, it didn’t last and she got sober again in early November 2020.
Kelly Osbourne had a long battle with painkiller addiction that sent her to rehab three times by the time she was 24. She first went to Promises in Malibu in 2004. She returned to rehab in 2005. Then, when she moved to Los Angeles in 2009, she relapsed. She said people at the time, “I couldn’t see until tomorrow… It’s so embarrassing how many times I’ve thrown myself down the stairs… and hurt myself to get pills.”
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In April 2021, after nearly four years of sobriety, she relapsed. She revealed this in an Instagram Story, saying, “It’s a little hard for me to talk about this, but … I’ve relapsed … But I’m back on track … I’m sober today and I’ll be sober tomorrow, but it’s really just one day at a time.
Groom Ben Affleck has struggled with sobriety over the years and has had several relapses. In 2019, he was sober for a year and had a very public relapse after being in and out of rehab for several years leading up to it.
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His relapse happened two months after being sober for a year. He was seen stumbling as he made his way back to his ex-wife Jennifer Garner’s house. TMZ was outside the house on camera and Affleck said, “It happens, it’s a mistake, but I’m not going to let it derail me.” His ex-wife helped him get back on track.
Dax Shepard was sober for 16 years after struggling with an alcohol and cocaine problem. In August 2020, he crashed a motorcycle and was prescribed the pain reliever Vicodin for the pain from four broken ribs caused by the accident. This caused a relapse. During an episode of his podcast Armchair Experthe said he takes eight 30 mg vicodin pills a day and keeps it a secret from everyone.
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“I know that’s an amount that’s going to make for a pretty bad draw. And I’m starting to get really scared and I’m starting to feel really lonely. And I just have this huge secret. He admitted to being high on Vicodin at the 16-year sobriety meeting. By the time the podcast aired in September 2020, he had sought help and had been sober for 11 days.
These celebrities may make getting sober look easy, but each of them has struggled, persevered, and thrived. They teach us this change is it is possible and introspection is sometimes necessary to ultimately become the best version of ourselves.