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Celebrities Speak Out About Staying Sober in the COVID Pandemic


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There’s simply no doubt that the COVID pandemic has made not only getting sober but staying sober harder than usual. From being isolated at home to being bored and unable to attend support group meetings, getting and staying sober during a pandemic can put even those with the strongest foundation in sobriety to the test. 

And, celebrities are no exception. 

During 2020 and 2021 some of these celebrities were candid about their personal struggles with sobriety during the pandemic. For many of these celebrities being open and honest about their own personal struggles can be difficult. However, the value that this transparency provides to others trying to get and stay sober can be immense. 

Here are some of the celebrities who not only spoke up about their own struggles with sobriety amidst the pandemic but also those who celebrated sobriety milestones during this difficult time. 

Stars Who Spoke Out About Sobriety During the Pandemic

1. Joe Rogan

Joe Rogan, famous American podcaster, UFC commentator, comedian, actor, and former television presenter, joined the movement Sober October in October of 2017. When the pandemic hit, he questioned whether or not he would participate. Rogan had a group of friends he traditionally did Sober October with, along with the other thousands of people across the globe who participated in it. However, in October of 2021 Rogan’s friends all dropped out of the challenge citing that the pandemic made it too hard that year. 

After questioning whether he wanted to or could stay sober through all 31 days of October, Rogan decided to continue his tradition of participating in the movement, Sober October. He posted the following on his Twitter account in regards to this topic: 

“Sober October update. I know many of you were upset that we were not doing sober October this year. Well, I’m in. I’m with ya.”

Fans responded with more than 550,000 likes on his tweet. 

2. Macklemore

Macklemore, also known as Benjamin Hammon Haggerty, first got sober in 2008 when he was just 25 years old. Sent to rehab by his father, Macklemore credits this with saving his life. In an interview on the podcast People’s Party With Talib Kweli” in January 2021 the famous rapper said the following, 

If it wasn’t for my pops having the 10 or 12 racks that it was when I first went to treatment [at 25] and [his ability] to spend that on me, I’d be f—ing dead. I wouldn’t be here right now. That’s not to be f—ing dramatic, that’s just what it is. I was about to die.” 

Despite having entered recovery in 2008, Macklemore has had his own struggles with staying sober, as many do. Today, he says that he’s been in the rooms of recovery for about 11 years now. 

Look, I’ve been in and out of the [recovery meeting] rooms for 11 years, I don’t know how much time I have today, seven, eight months, I don’t really count anymore,” he continued. “I’ve spent most of the last 11 years in recovery, and it’s made me who I am…”, he explained on Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast.

In addition, Macklemore revealed that he had relapsed during the COVID pandemic. The songwriter and rapper shared that when Dax Shepard, co-host of Armchair Expert podcast, had talked about his own struggles with staying sober it resonated with him. 

Macklemore said, “I really, really resonated with the episode where you talked about your relapse, and… I cried. It made me feel, as someone that had relapsed again, like a month or two before, that I’m not alone.”

He went on to say, “There is a therapeutic value of one addict to another sharing their experience, strength and hope [and] that has saved my f—ing life and continues to save my life.”

3. Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus, American singer, songwriter, actress, and television personality, got sober in 2019 as a result of vocal cord surgery. During that time of recovery, she began to look into her family history as it related to substance use, mental health, and more. She uncovered both addiction and mental health challenges that had existed in her family’s history. Cyrus said that this helped her to understand more about herself, including her own struggle with sobriety. 

In an interview with Vanity, the star said, “So just going through that and asking, ‘Why am I the way that I am?’ By understanding the past, we understand the present and the future much more clearly.”

But it hasn’t been an easy road for her. Cyrus also shared during the interview that she had relapsed, like so many others, during the COVID pandemic. She said, “I fell off and I realized that I now am back on sobriety, two weeks sober, and I feel like I really accepted that time.”

Celebrities Who Celebrated Sobriety Anniversaries During the Pandemic

1. Florence Welch

Florence and the Machine singer Florence Welch shared in February 2021 that she was seven years sober. Posting on her Instagram account on February 3 the following, 

“I am seven years sober today. I send my love and support to anyone who is struggling.”

2. Anthony Hopkins

This Silence of the Lambs star was proud and humbled to celebrate 45 years of sobriety in December of 2020. He posted this message on his Twitter account, 

Forty-five years ago today, I had a wake-up call. I was headed for disaster, I was drinking myself to death…A little thought that said, ‘Do you want to live or die?’ And I said, ‘I want to live.’ And suddenly the relief came and my life has been amazing.” 

The star who has been in nearly 100 movies, went on to encourage youth struggling with alcoholism or addiction and said, 

“I have my off days and sometimes little bits of doubt and all that… All in all, I say hang in there. Today is the tomorrow you were so worried about yesterday. Young people, don’t give up. Just keep in there.”

3. Tim Allen

The star of The Santa Clause, Home Improvement, and Last Man Standing to name a few, celebrated 22 years of sobriety in March of 2020. But life wasn’t always so great for Allen. Allen opened up about what drugs and alcohol had done to his life in an interview with Parade. Allen spoke about how he had served two and a half years in federal prison for cocaine possession soon after graduating from college. But he didn’t get sober then. Nearly 20 years after that stint he got a DUI and went to rehab thus beginning his sobriety journey. 

Allen shared the following about his sobriety during an appearance on the Kelly Clarkson Show 

“It doesn’t happen overnight,” he said. “It’s a day-to-day thing…. But giving back what somebody gives you, that’s … I see this happen right here, this is a miracle. I see it in my particular program.”

If you or someone you love is struggling with alcohol or drug issues, has relapsed during the pandemic, or wants to learn more about treatment for addiction, Futures Recovery Healthcare is here for you. Contact our admissions team online or call us at 866-804-2098.


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