Say what you want about Ozzy Osbourne, but he is giving hope to those suffering from addiction.
Ozzy is proof that recovery is possible. He admits how lucky he is to still be alive. After years of carelessly using dangerous substances while in the throes of addiction, he’s finally found contentment within himself.
“I’m lucky. There’s nothing special about me. I should have been dead 1,000 times. I’m not being big-headed about that, or invincible. It doesn’t take much to kill you.”– Ozzy Osbourne
Ozzy Osbourne Speaks About His Battle With Addiction
The infamous musician, who is well-known for biting a bat’s head off during a concert once, is now 72-years-old with seven years of sobriety under his belt.
“I thought I’d be drinking to the day I die,” says Osbourne in an interview with Variety.
Osbourne explains how hard and hopeless addiction is by saying, “One of the last things my father said to me before he died, he said, ‘Do something about your drinking.’ So I had a drink.”
The Pressures of the Entertainment Industry
Alcohol and drugs poured throughout the entertainment industry, which both Ozzy and his wife were part of.
“I just thought that’s how people are when they drink,” says Ozzy’s manager, wife, and co-host of “The Talk” TV show. “I just thought, ‘OK. They just like to drink.’ That was it. I understood nothing about the “-ism.”
Ozzy attended the “Betty Ford Center,” an organization that helps addicts and alcoholics.
The family explains how fame made it harder to get sober, especially with the paparazzi harassing Ozzy and Jack while they attempted to get clean.
“The thing is people call it a disease, but if you had cancer, people wouldn’t climb over trees and take a photo of you in your bed,” explains Ozzy. “Yet they do when you’re in rehab.”
Ozzy’s Son and His Own Struggle
Sadly, Ozzy and Sharon’s son Jack fell into the same spiral as his father until he was forced to go to treatment.
An intimate moment between Ozzy and Jack takes place as Jack’s accomplishment of achieving 17 years of sobriety is brought up during the interview.
“That’s just great, Jack. I’m really proud of you for that,” said Ozzy.
The Fear of an Invetible Death
Sharon is asked “how many times did you think Ozzy would die?”
“Oh, my Lord. Well, basically for years, because I was terrified that he was going to get sick in the night, or fall over, hit his head,” she responds. “I would always make sure that there was somebody there, checking on him through the night when he was on the road without me. But it was always in the front of my mind.”
Ozzy’s Advice to Others
With sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll commonly thought of as the rockstar way, Ozzy now sees the truth. When surrounded by alcohol and drugs, a person with an addictive personality can easily slip into a dark hole. With hindsight being 20/20, he hopes young musicians abusing substances will see the danger, and turn away from self-medicating.
“All I can say is, I’m 72 years of age. Most of the people that I drank with are dead. And the ones that aren’t, that still continue to drink, are going to be dead soon,” he says. “It’s not a happy ending. If you want to carry on drinking, my hat goes off to you.”
When Ozzy and Jack openly speak about the painful, yet truthful stories of their struggles with alcoholism and addiction, but showing how recovery is possible provides a positive and hopeful message for many who need encouragement.