- Jan 10
When you struggle with addiction, it’s easy to feel isolated and alone. This disease can fill you with shame when you’re faced with cravings and the painful effects it has on every aspect of your life. While your experience is unique, it doesn’t mean you’re the only one who’s been caught in the web of addiction. People from every walk of life experience addiction. Even celebrities such as movie stars, singers and sports heroes can secretly live with an addiction to drugs or alcohol.
If the disease of addiction is causing you to feel like an outcast, here are some celebrities who have suffered from addiction, relapse and recovery.
The Olympic legacy created by swimmer Michael Phelps is unrivaled. After attending the Olympic Games in Athens, Beijing, London and Rio, he’s received 23 gold medals, three silvers and two bronzes, giving him the most medal wins of any Olympic athlete. Sadly, untreated depression led him to a downward cycle of drug and alcohol abuse. Attending rehab allowed him to develop a fresh mentality and prepare for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio with a new lease on life.
Singer and actress Demi Lovato is one of many celebrities in recovery. From eating disorders to a diagnosed bipolar disorder to addiction, Lovato has been open about her struggles to bring hope to those who may face similar circumstances. Lovato started her first rehabilitation program at 17. As recently as 2018, she admitted to relapse, and shortly after overdosed on heroin. Even so, she’s committed to her recovery and taking back her life.
Robert Downey Jr.
Although Robert Downey Jr. has been starring in movies since the 1980s, he credits his recent success in the last decade to his sobriety. Throughout the ’90s, Downey had multiple drug arrests and cycled in and out of jail and treatment facilities. His drinking and drug misuse eventually made him nearly unhireable in Hollywood. After his wife gave him an ultimatum in 2003, Robert Downey, Jr. committed himself to his recovery using a combination of therapy and 12-step programs as well as yoga and meditation.
Like many country music stars, Keith Urban has a wholesome boy next door image. However, shortly after moving from New Zealand to Nashville, TN, and recording his first album, Urban got entrenched in the partying lifestyle. Soon, he was plagued by addictions to alcohol, ecstasy and cocaine. After meeting the love of his life, Nicole Kidman, he decided to make a change. He attended rehab on three separate occasions and has now been sober for over a decade.
President George W. Bush
While addiction can ravage your life, recovery can give you hope for an incredible future. A great example of this is former President George W. Bush. Throughout his teens and well into his 30s, young Bush struggled with alcoholism. After one particularly alcohol-fueled weekend to celebrate his 40th birthday, he decided to give up alcohol and sought spiritual guidance and counseling. His sobriety allowed him to achieve the highest office in the land.
Reach out for Help Today
As these stars with addiction show, even those who seemingly have it all are not immune to developing an addiction to drugs or alcohol. These celebrities found renewed hope in recovery.
If you need help, the compassionate team at Gateway is here for you. Contact us today to learn about our evidence-based approach to addiction treatment.