British rock star and notorious drug abuser Pete Doherty seems to have finally turned the corner. He recently checked himself into The Hope Rehab Center in Thailand, willing and determined to shake the addiction that has kept him in a stranglehold for the past decade. Furthermore, Doherty is eager to make a positive change in the lives of other addicts as well as his own.
A long history of heroin abuse for Pete Doherty
In the early 2000s, Pete Doherty was one of the most famous faces in British rock. His band, The Libertines, released their debut album in 2002 and watched it shoot up to the number one position on the U.K. album chart, winning the praises of music critics and the affection of young rock fans across the country. But as The Libertines’ success brought fame and financial fortune to its members, it also fueled the spark of addiction that had been ignited in its now-famous frontman years before.
Doherty was only 16 when he smoked marijuana for the first time, but he knew he was looking for something stronger. “I was into psychedelic music from the Sixties, and I’d go to these underground clubs,” he explained in an essay for the British paper The Independent. “There were loads of drugs around: weed, speed, LSD, but in the back of my mind there was always heroin. Long before I came across it, heroin was there.”
Eventually Doherty crossed paths with someone who could get him heroin, and once he made enough money to finance a steady diet of it, the rest was history. For years Doherty ravaged his life and the lives of those closest to him through rampant drug use, all without ever truly believing he had a problem. Sure, he made a few cameos in rehab facilities before, but none of those visits came on his own accord. More often than not, they were court-ordered alternatives to serving time in prison. That’s what makes Doherty’s latest attempt so encouraging: He now realizes the magnitude of his addiction, sees the incredibly negative effect it has had on his life, and is ready to do something about it.
Doherty’s mission extends beyond saving himself
As a famed musician, Doherty has the perfect platform to let his own story of redemption spur real change in the lives of countless others. Of course, he’s always had this ability, but unfortunately he spent years imparting the wrong type of change and influence. Doherty’s drug abuse didn’t just affect him or the people close to him; it had a ripple effect much larger than he probably ever realized. As a young rock star, he became someone British youth looked up to and wanted to emulate. Sadly, some of those young emulators suffered tragic consequences.
Pete Doherty seems to understand that ripple effect now, and is poised to start using his influence for good. Although his mission when entering rehab was understandably focused on beating addiction for personal reasons and turning his own life around, Doherty’s sights are now set on a bigger picture. “Being here has made me realize how much I want to help other people struggling with addiction,” Doherty writes. “This is why, once I’m a bit further along in my recovery, I’m going to do a few shows to raise money for people who really want to get clean and need this treatment.”
“There is a way out. You will heal.”
Doherty has set lofty goals for himself, and hopefully he will achieve them. In the meantime, he wants to communicate to others suffering with addiction that no matter how bad you think things are, you still have the opportunity to turn it around. “To anyone struggling with addiction, I would say this: just hang on, hang on,” Doherty said at the conclusion of his essay. “There is a way out. You will heal. I don’t care how much damage you’ve done, you can heal.”
If you or someone you know are struggling with drug abuse, take comfort in those words written by Pete Doherty, once one of the most notorious drug abusers in modern music. It’s never too late to get the help you deserve. Call The Watershed today at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: celebrities in recovery, Celebrity Rehab, Recovery Music