Tag Archive: Addiction


http://www.sobernation.com/5-celebrities-who-bounced-back-from-a-relapse/

5 Celebrities Who Have Bounced Back From a Relapse

celebrities who have come back from a relapse

Being famous definitely has its perks. But, it also has its downfalls. Some might argue that fame and drugs go hand-in-hand and that it’s probably a common occurrence to see, be around, or use drugs when you’re famous. And no doubt, there have been numerous tragic stories of celebrities who have succumbed to their drug addiction. But, we’re here to talk about something positive: Celebrities who have relapsed but who have also bounced back and are thriving!

But first, a word about addiction and relapse. One of the main working definitions of addiction is that it is a chronic, progressive, relapsing disorder. Now, that doesn’t mean that everyone who is recovering from drug addiction will relapse at one time or another. However, keep in mind that addiction is an insidious disease that can sneak up on you and the statistics don’t lie: Information gathered by drug and alcohol rehabs show that the percentage of people who will relapse after rehab and even after a having had a period of sobriety ranges from as much as 50% to an astonishing 90%.

Being in recovery can be tough, no doubt. Being a celebrity in recovery is possibly tougher. We’re told we need to change “people, places, things” but, it’s got to be hard to do that if you’re a celebrity in Hollywood. As a member of an exclusive group, you’d have to mingle with some of the same people as before, visit a lot of the same places and attend the same events (think: Oscars and all those before and after parties and all of that alcohol), as well as be a part of the same microcosm of other famous people.

Here are 5 celebs that relapsed but are sober now.

Robert Downey Jr.

robert downey jr sober

RDJ was the epitome of achronic-relapser. After repeated attempts at rehab though, the actor has been drug-free since 2003, proving that recovery is possible. He credits his family, therapy, a twelve-step recovery program, yoga and meditation, and the practice of Wing Chun Kung Fu.Downey is an inspiring role model to many in recovery: after struggling for so long with a raging drug addiction and its consequences (Downey is no stranger to the justice system), he is thriving in sobriety. With over four decades in the business and an amazing list of credits to his name – the Iron Man franchise, Sherlock Holmes 1 and 2, a hilariously memorable role in Tropic Thunder – RDJ has managed to stay relevant and fresh and is more successful than ever.

Eminem

eminem sober

Several years ago,Eminem was struggling with alcohol and painkillers and decided to go to rehab. Within the first three weeks, he relapsed and within a month his addiction was worse than ever.”I don’t know at what point exactly it started to be a problem,” Eminem said in an interview. “I just remember liking it more and more. People tried to tell me that I had a problem.” He eventually began mixing pills, which led to an overdose. The rapper was rushed to the hospital when he went into organ failure. A month after being released from the hospital, Eminem experienced another relapse.

He says he effectively got sober on April 20, 2008 and considers Elton John to be a close friend and mentor during that difficult time.

Gerard Butler

gerard butler sober

Before becoming an actor, Butler accepted an offer from Glasgow University to study law and, upon graduation, he earned aposition as a trainee lawyer at a law firm in Edinburgh. But, due to his alcoholic lifestyle, hefrequently missed work and, one week before he would qualify as a full-fledged lawyer, hewas fired.Around this time, Butler’s father passed away. Butler has said of this period in his life: “I had gone from a 16-year-old who couldn’t wait to grasp life to a 22-year-old who didn’t care if he died in his sleep.” The 25-year-old unqualified lawyer then moved to London in order to pursue an acting career.  Butler has admitted that, “When I started out, I’m not sure I was actually in it for the right reasons. I wanted very much to be famous.”

Although Butler quit drinking 15 years ago, he was in rehab just a few years back – this time for an addiction to prescription painkillers. Butler began taking painkillers after an injury while shooting the movie Shattered in 2007. “I started taking more. And I started taking them very quickly.” He says he sought treatment through a rehab before it got too out of hand. Butler has been clean and sober ever since.

Kelly Osbourne

kelly osbourne sober

Singer-songwriter, actress, television personality, and fashion designer, Kelly Osborne has madequite a name for herself. However, it wasn’t without its struggles – namely – drug addiction. As the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and Kelly unfortunately takes after her dad, musician Ozzy Osbourne, when it comes to substance abuse.Both father and daughter are clean and sober today. But not without their respective relapses.

At the age of 17, Kelly became addicted to Vicodin – something that had been inadvertently documented on the family’s reality TV show, The Osbournes.

After a fourth stint in rehab in 2009, Kelly said that she finally felt optimistic about her chances at recovery. “After 30 days, I left rehab. For the first time, I felt hopeful. I knew I’d been given another chance at my life, at my career, at happiness. I wanted to grab it.”

Keith Urban

keith urban sober

Musician and American Idol judge Keith Urban is no stranger to rehab – he has been there three times to treat addictions to cocaine and alcohol.“The truth is that I wasn’t even aware of where it was at in my life and how it was just going to come down and take me down like it did,” he told Ellen in 2010. “I was probably in such a state of denial that I consciously wasn’t aware of it.”

After experiencing one relapse, he checked himself into the Betty Ford Center in California in October of 2006. At that time, Urban issued a statement regarding the nature of the disease of addiction, saying: “One can never let one’s guard down on recovery, and I’m afraid that I have.”

Urban has been clean and sober for the better part of a decade now and has continued to enjoy great success. Urban has two daughters with wife, Nicole Kidman, and continues to tour as well as sit as judge for one of America’s most popular television programs.

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With March almost over I wanted to do a little check in.  This has been a big month for us.  I turned 30 years old, celebrated 9 years at my current job and we started foster/adoptive parent classes.  I have not been to a meeting in two weeks, I was feeling a little burnt out.  Plus with class being on Wed nights and not getting home till after 9pm the next day I feel dead.  Makes it hard to want to go anywhere Thursday night as well.  I do miss my Al-anon family, but right now I have to take care of myself.

I was taught that in Al-Anon, we have to take care of ourselves.  And right now that means getting rest and not over doing it.  The first class was a shocker and until I get used to staying up late on Wed nights it might be a little bit till I can get to a meeting.  I still do my reading and will still try to keep in touch with everyone.

This being the third month we talked about the third step, I am having to do that a lot and turn stuff over.  Its hard, but I know in my heart that my Higher Power is there right beside me through all of this.  I pray for the strength to stay on track and make it though this process of becoming a parent.  I know my daughter is out there somewhere, just waiting for us like we are waiting for her.

I use the serenity prayer so much om my way to work – it’s a good thing I don’t have my windows down, the cars next to me might hear me yell it over and over to myself till I can say it calmly from the heart.  That’s when I know my higher power has heard me and I feel the calming nature of his presence with me.

What are somethings that you have turned over to the care of God, as you understood him?  What are somethings that you know you need to let go of but are having an issue doing so?

30…part 1

I am not 30 years old.  Last Wednesday night I was  afraid to go to sleep.  If I went to sleep then when I woke up I would be 30.  Like by staying away I could avoid it.  It’s just a number I know, but for some reason 30 was a scary one.  I was watching TV and trying to keep it together.  I had taken Thursday and Friday off work, so my lack of sleep was not hurting anything.  I was trying not to keep my husband (who still had to go to work in the morning) awake with my panic attack.  I remember how I felt as 9pm and then 10pm rolled around.  The panic was almost too much for me.

I got pretty interested in what was on the TV at that moment (can’t tell you what it was now) And I looked over at the time to see it was 1:30am.  OMG, I was 30!  Nothing felt different, the world had not come to an end, no one was calling me telling me what a failure I was.  I was 30 and everything was just fine.  How could I have been so scared and nothing happened?  I had some how let my thoughts do me in.

As of today I have been smoke free for 70 days and saved $230.  It feels amazing to have made it this far and not feel like I can’t go another day and I know that’s what I can do.  Today I am smoke free, I can only live one day at a time…so I wanted to write down a list…or two…or three  Here are my 30 things…

30 Things that I am thankful for – in no particular order

  1. To be alive
  2. my parents
  3. my husband
  4. my sister
  5. My Sweet furry children
  6. Devereux (Foster care agency)
  7. my job
  8. a roof over my head
  9. my health (as bad as I feel today, it could always be worse)
  10. my friends
  11. al-anon
  12. AA
  13. being able to pay bills and some what on time most months 🙂
  14. My Hubbies substance abuse counselor and his wife who have become very close friends.
  15. being nicotine free
  16. loving my job
  17. a bed to make
  18. food in my house to eat
  19. clothes on my back
  20. people willing to donate items to others in need
  21. a husband who understands my migraines
  22. an understanding Boss
  23. supportive family
  24. being able to express my creative side
  25. strangers who smile back
  26. strangers who smile first
  27. warm spring days
  28. waking up to a Boxer who wants to snuggle
  29. falling asleep in my husbands arms
  30. hearing someone say they think I will be a good mom

 

New Month, next step…

The 3rd step is also the 3rd step in my little cha-cha dance.

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

We made a decision…  this says to me that it is truly up to me to make this choice.  I can choose to be sick and crazy, or I can choose to get better and ask for help from my higher power.  If I ask for help then I have to be willing to get out of the damn way so that He can do what He needs to do to help me. And it’s the care of God not the full control, not the ultimate fix all.  We still have to play a part in our lives, we just have to be willing to ask the right questions and listen to the answers.  It may not be what we want and it may not even be something that we understand at the very moment.  But it is there, if we ask for it.

If I ask for the ability to understand my husband, He is going to give me a situation where I have to be understanding.  If I want to forgive my husband, He will give me a situation where I will need to forgive.  If I ask to be more patient, He will give me a situation where I have to show patience.  He is not going to magically give me what I ask for, He is going to give me the tools to show myself that I have the ability to do it.  Al-Anon has shown me that when I asked for strength, He showed me that I am strong.

So as we start our step 3, remember that it is in this step that we learn that God is willing to show us what we already have inside us, if we are willing to trust Him and ask for His help.  It’s like asking for someone to take the blindfold off so you can look at your self for the first time.  You get to see all the wonderful things inside you that has been there the whole time, it was just hidden behind our own blockades.  We pulled off the blinders, we pulled back the shades…seeing the true self that is there by asking God for His help, we should be ready for the next step – Our personal inventory, but more on that next month.

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too.

 

 

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http://www.sobernation.com/nicotine-dependency-an-evil-in-disguise/

Happy Valentine’s Day…

“I don’t understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine’s Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon.”
~ Author Unknown ~

Hello My Name is Courtney, and I am in love with a recovering alcoholic.  He is in love with a recovering a Co-dependent.  We each have our own programs to help us and we have gone to meetings together to get a better understanding of where the other one is coming from.  It was difficult to sit there helpless while the person I loved was killing themselves.

On this day of love, please take time to tell the people you care about that you love them.  You don’t have to blow a bunch of money on gifts – but spend time with them, have dinner at home, make it together.  Go out just the two of you, or as a family if you have children.

A look at Causes of Relapse…

Causes of Relapse (as offered in AA meetings)
1. Failure to go to AA meetings.
2. Failure to take the 12 steps.
3. Involvement in an emotional relationship.
4. Association with the old crowd.
5. Failure to get a sponsor.
6. Failure to read the Big Book.
7. Desire to achieve oblivion.
8. They didn’t “want it” badly enough.
9. Etc.

I never really drank so I can not relate to all things that an alcoholic is going through.  But I do have an addiction to nicotine.  So I understand how relapsing can make you feel like a failure.  You want to blame others, blame things, blame situations.  We come up with all kinds of reasons as to why it happened to make it OK in our minds that we slipped up.

Here is a distillation of Big Book causes of relapse:
Causes of RELAPSE (according to the Big Book)
Count:
7….a. Failure to grow spiritually.
4….b. Fighting with or harming others.
3….C. Failure to work with other alcoholics.
2….d. Failure to take step 5.
2….e. Attempt to shield from alcohol.
2….f. Failure to make amends.
l….g. Selfishness.
l….h. Resentment.

~ I too can have a relapse back into my old ways.  I could go right back to letting my life be ruled by someone else.  I could go back to being sad, hateful, angry, lonely, with-out faith, with-out hope.  It is always there, ready to pounce.  I have to be active in my thoughts and retain my faith and turn things over to my higher power.  If I take my anger and turn it over – there will not be any negative soil for those nasty things to grow in.

~ I too can relapse back into the craziness that was my life for about 6 years.  Not knowing who I was going to get walking in the door when my husband got home.  I had no idea when he was going to be home and if he was already going to have some beers in him.  I had no way of knowing when he left work, where he stopped on his way home, if he was dead or alive.  I worried about him and feared him at the same time.

~ I don’t want to go back to that way of thinking.  It is getting better day by day.  A little bit at a time I am able to let go of those feelings.  It’s not that they might ever really go away – but it’s what I do with those thoughts and feelings that matters now.  I have to tell myself that I can control it, change it or cause it.

All I can do is pray and turn it over.  Everyone will have to face themselves in the mirror and that is the person who you have to deal with.  That person staring back at you from that shiny piece of glass.  Those eyes that show all your inner most feelings – can you look yourself in the eye?  I know that when I wake up in the morning  – I can do that.  I can face myself knowing that I have done the best that I can and that I am the only person who is truly responsible for my happiness.  I am still working on my 4th step, so I can be ready to move on to the rest – one step at a time.  Is it easy – NO.  But the right thing may not always be the easy thing.  Sometimes the right thing to do is the hardest thing you will ever have to do so far.  One step – one day – one moment – one second – at a time.

 

These are not intended to offend anyone – some might get a chuckle, some might see where they have gone off the path of serenity and onto the path of self-destruction.
Twelve Steps of a Relapse

1. I decided I could handle any emotional problems if other people would just quit trying to run my life.

2. I firmly believe that there is no greater power than myself and anyone who says differently is insane.

3. I made a decision to remove my will and my life from God, who didn’t understand me anyway.

4. I made a searching and thorough moral inventory of everyone I know, so they couldn’t fool me and take advantage of my good nature.

5. I sought these people out and tried to get them to admit to me, by God, the exact nature of their wrongs.

6. I became willing to help these people get rid of their defects of character.

7. I was humble enough to ask these people to remove their shortcomings.

8. I kept a list of all the people who had harmed me, and waited patiently for a chance to get even.

9. I got even with these people whenever possible except when to do so would get me into trouble.

10. I continue to take everyone’s inventory and when they are wrong, which is most of the time, I promptly make them admit it.

11. Sought through the concentration of my willpower to get God, who didn’t understand me anyhow, to see that my desires were best, and He ought to give me the power to carry them out.

12. Having maintained my emotional problems with these steps, I can thoroughly recommend them to others who don’t want to lose their hard-earned status, but wish to be left alone to practice neurosis in everything they do for the rest of their days.

 

12 days ago was my 9th month recovery birthday.  I feel a little sad that I don’t get the same milestone celebrations as AA members do.  My Al-anon group only does the yearly coins.  I guess there are some Al-anon groups that don’t even do that…So I will just count my blessings.  I never thought those coins could mean something, but after seeing my husband get his – and other get theirs – it makes me want my own little remembrance that:

YES – I can get better.

YES – I can make it through one day at a time.

YES – I can find love, strength, hope and faith again.

YES – I can support my husband without losing myself.

I also have to remember that I don’t need for something to be recognized by someone else to have it mean more to me.  If it is important to me, then that is who I need to get recognition from.  I need to recognize my own self worth.  I also need to make sure that I gibe non solicited recognition out to my husband and others who I see make changes in their lives.  I need to say out loud that I see how far he has come in his recovery.  Him knowing that I see it and had the mind-set to say it will then show to myself and him just how far in my own recovery I have come.

So – here is my 9th month coin.  It’s a Digital one – but that’s OK  – in just 3 short months I will be getting my one year recovery coin.    If you would like your own digital chip, this is where I got mine: http://serenityfound.org/chips/chips.html

We need to have fun in recovery – we need to learn to laugh at ourselves.  I have learned to laugh and have fun – meetings don’t always have to be about sad or bad things.  I think that new comers need to hear about the good things too.  Offers them hope that they will laugh again one day.  Nothing will be posted with the intention to offend – even though that is a risk that I take with every post.  Some people may not like what I have to say, but that’s their choice.  I have a few funny things to post and then maybe do some exploring into what happens when someone has a relapse.

If you would like to post how long you have been in recovery for, your sobriety birthday, or just share words of hope for others – please feel free to do so in the comment box and as always:

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too. 

 

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