An Early Rising Star
“My dad was an addict and an alcoholic. Guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol because it fulfilled him and he chose that over a family.”
Demi Lovato entered the acting industry at the tender age of 10, when she first appeared in Barney & Friends from 2002 to 2004. She gained notoriety a few years later for her stellar role in Camp Rock, in which her talent as a singer was showcased after partnering with Joe Jonas for their hit song “This Is Me.”
It wasn’t long until the stresses of the industry, her mental illness, and being a target of bullying took their toll and she started self-medicating with a variety of drugs and alcohol to ease her emotional pain and try to cope with the pressure of her career and downward-spiraling family life.
By 2010, at the age of 17, Lovato had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, anorexia and bulimia. She also admitted to self-harm in the form of cutting. Less than a year later, in 2011, she entered rehab for the first time.
Veering Off the Road to Recovery
“I wasn’t working my program. I wasn’t ready to get sober. I was sneaking it on planes, sneaking it in bathrooms, sneaking it throughout the night. Nobody knew.”
As often happens, even after spending a few weeks at an inpatient rehab facility, Demi was not yet ready for sobriety. She was using cocaine, heroin, and alcohol, among other drugs. All this caused her to almost overdose several times. Finally, after struggling with her addiction and mental health problems for so long, Demi started spiraling downward, having to cancel shows and getting into other problems along the way.
Rock Bottom: Demi Lovato’s Overdose
“I think when someone gets to rock bottom and they need a way out of that hole, the only way to get out is to surrender and ask for help.”
It wasn’t until 2018 that Demi Lovato’s drug use finally pushed her off the edge. One morning, she was rushed to the hospital after overdosing on opioids, which led the public to ask: “What did Demi Lovato overdose on?” It was later determined to oxycodone that had been laced with fentanyl. She later admitted to having been near death, and if she hadn’t been found when she was, she would have surely died. Two years later she spoke about the incident, attributing it to a deep sadness over being controlled by her management team due to her eating disorders, as well as having to face her father’s abandonment. She had reached rock bottom, and it was time to look for help.
Demi Lovato and California Sober: What Exactly Does It Mean?
California Sober is a nonmedical term that refers to leaving behind hard drug use and limiting oneself to the use of marijuana and drinking alcohol moderately. While most rehab programs focus on complete abstinence, Demi Lovato believes this method is what works best for her, although it may not be for everyone.
There are many factors to take into consideration before choosing California Sober — specifically, the reasons an addict is looking to get clean. Is it for them? For someone else? If they’re not ready to go all the way, some say California Sober may be the perfect choice because they’re able to consume alcohol and marijuana but have to stay away from other drugs. As Demi Lovato says: “”I know I’m done with the stuff that’s going to kill me, right?”
Sharing Her Story: Demi Lovato’s Rehab
“You just have to take it one day at a time. Some days are easier than others and some days you forget about drinking and using, but for me, I work on my physical health, which is important, but my mental health as well.”
For years now, Demi Lovato has been a role model for today’s younger generation. The fact that she has chosen to share her struggle with addiction and mental health problems can bring hope to others who look up to her and are facing their own battle. Admitting she’s also had to deal with her share of common problems could encourage young people to follow suit and seek the help they need before making bad decisions from which there may be no return.
As candid as she’s been in recent times about her failure to stay on normal rehab programs, Demi still warns about choosing California Sober for the wrong reasons. She realizes it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution and that many may view it as a way to continue abusing substances without the responsibility of facing one’s life choices and practicing abstinence.
The road has been long and hard, and while her solution may not be the right one for everyone, Demi Lovato has grown to understand and accept herself and her fears. Today she looks back on the dark times she’s left behind and seems content with what her future holds, and, while California Sober may seem like the right choice for her, Demi is adamant about expressing how real sobriety is only achieved through abstinence. For now, she is taking it one day at a time and allowing herself to resolve her issues at her own pace.
If you’re struggling with addiction, keep in mind Demi’s words: “Let’s let everybody know it’s OK to have a mental illness and addiction problem.” Give FHE Health a call today at (844) 299-0618. Let us help you start your life anew in our intensive detox center in South Florida, where you’ll find the peace and support you need to start walking down the path to recovery and creating a brand new life, one that will show you just how strong and determined you can be.