Kelly Osbourne: In Her Own Words

Kelly Osbourne: In Her Own Words

Novus writes inspirational stories of people in the news who have overcome addiction. This is not to imply that these people are connected to Novus Medical Detox Center but simply to provide hope and encouragement to those fighting addiction.

It's July 25, 2018, in London, UK, and Kelly Osbourne is the featured guest on the popular, long-running British lunchtime television chat show, Loose Women, which has aired on the ITV network since 1999.

Kelly is the 33-year-old English singer-songwriter, actress, television presenter, and fashion designer who first became famous on her family's reality TV show, ‘The Osbournes’, which aired on MTV from 2002 to 2005, and was the network's most-watched show ever.

One of the three chat show hosts asks Kelly about her friend Demi Lovato's drug overdose and hospitalization just the day before. Lovato, 25, was found unconscious in her Hollywood Hills, California, home and was rushed to a Los Angeles hospital. The incident was a hot entertainment media item, because it involved a relapse for Lovato, who has been in and out of rehab several times.

"I can't speak, will never speak on behalf of Demi, because that wouldn't be right,” she said. “I can only share about what I've been through and what I know from myself. And that is, relapse is one of the hardest things we face as an addict who has gone through the program and turned their life around. People need to just show love and pray for her and know that it's okay, just get back on track again."

Kelly discusses both her sobriety and the struggles Demi faces on Loose Women.

When asked what she was addicted to, she says there were many.

"I could be addicted to absolutely anything..." pauses for a moment in thought, and then..."Uhmmm, the biggest things were probably drugs and alcohol."

If you're wondering what else she might have been considering, she has described herself as a "trash can user" – someone who will 'do' anything and everything. She has said the only drug she never used was crack.

The Start: Vicodin at 13

At 13, Kelly was already suffering bouts of depression and anxiety. And then an operation, and opioid painkillers to take home, introduced her to the numbing effects of drugs.

"I had my tonsils taken out, and they gave me liquid Vicodin," she told People magazine in 2009. "I found, when I take this, people like me. I'm having fun, I'm not getting picked on. It became a confidence thing."

At 16, Kelly was getting pills from friends, doctors, anywhere.

"I have crazy anxiety. I was walking around with a constant sweat moustache," she says. "So what's the first thing you do? Go to a doctor. They give you Xanax, Klonopin, Valium. I'd start off taking them as prescribed. Then I'd be like, 'These are magic pills! Take 10!'"

By the time she was 16, and The Osbournes went on the air, she was taking "whatever I could sniff or swallow to not be me."

The Osbourne family's substance use disorders are no secret. Ozzy, 69, abused drugs and alcohol for much of his adult life. According to reports, he checked into the Betty Ford Center the day after Kelly was born. He is still sober after many years.

Kelly's younger brother Jack, 32, was treated for drug and alcohol addiction at 17, but has since turned his life around and is a successful TV presenter.

Her younger sister Aimee, 25, keeps out of the public eye.

Kelly was 19 when she first went to rehab. She recently said that she's been to "rehab seven times and to two mental institutions." The institutions, she said, were terrible.

On Addiction, Rehab and Relapse

Kelly openly discusses what addiction, rehab and relapse have meant to her personally. Some people may disagree with her opinions. But keep in mind that she is discussing her own personal experiences, not anyone else's.

"It doesn't matter who you are, where you come from, what you believe in. It takes hold of anyone and everyone if it can," Osbourne told the chat show hosts. "It's an obsessive compulsive disorder, it's mental health, it's something that I believe I was born with. I was doing things from such a young age that weren't normal. Like my mum turning around and I was swigging on children's Tylenol even though I knew it was wrong because I liked the taste. When I look back and think about that, that's not normal.
"People need to know rehab doesn't fix you, it just helps you to get yourself on the right track," she said. "You're never fixed. You spend your whole entire life doing everything you can to never pick up and use again.
"As an addict, when I wanted to relapse - when I wanted to use - I could have sober companions, I could have my parents there, I could have my best friends, I could have people who love and care and would do anything for me and if I wanted to get it, I would get it. It's got nothing to do with the people around you, per se.
"When you want it, you will get it. There's no such thing as embarrassment when you're an addict. You skip that and go straight to shame. You shame yourself so hardcore."

Clean and Sober at Last

How did she finally turn the corner?

"I reached a spiritual low. I was still working and functioning through all of it, [however] I was so unbelievably miserable, I didn't care if I lived anymore or not. I didn't care what happened to me. I didn't care who I woke up next to. I just didn't care about anything.
"I was looking out my window, and I knew what time everybody was coming home and what they did. And I was like, 'What is happening to my life that I know all this?' I haven't been to a grocery store for myself in two years, I haven't done anything, I'm not a functioning human being, I am too chemically dependent to function.
"For me, it was either I was going to die, or I was going to get help," she said. "I decided that I wanted to live, that life is worth living and that I have an incredible family and friends and why am I allowing myself to be so miserable? I couldn't live like that anymore.
"Sitting in a moment and being uncomfortable in that moment is really hard for me, but that feeling is so much better than the feeling that you have to face when you have messed up, when you have to go back and say, 'I have relapsed' and face your life when it's a mess."

Kelly Osbourne has been clean and sober for over 9 years.

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