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Celebrities and Stigma – Don’t Always Believe What You See

June 15th, 2021

Category: General


When talking about stigma, stereotyping is always part of the conversation. Common stereotypes of an alcoholic are unreliable, emotionally unstable, financially dependent, self-pitying, and incapable of changing their behaviours. 

People who are alcohol dependent are consequently sometimes victims of discrimination, like being actively ignored or avoided, or dehumanised in some other way, even when seeking help.

Those suffering from an unhealthy relationship with alcohol often do not fit this stereotype. Due to the lifestyle and pressures of being in the spotlight, a number of famous and well-respected people, especially young ones, have had fallen victim to alcoholism. 

In this post we have highlighted some well-respected and loved famous people who on the surface looked like they were living the perfect celebrity lifestyle.


Here is why you shouldn’t always believe what you see. 


Susannah Constantine 

“I’ve realised over time and being in recovery. I was the awful, angry – passive aggressive and my poor husband was the one who had to live with it.”

Host of TV programme ‘What Not to Wear’, alongside Trinny Woodhall, recently revealed her struggles with alcohol.  The presenter previously felt shame about her drinking and admitted that she tended to project her flaws on those around her. She said she felt liberated after she realised, she could change her life. 


Zac Efron

“a never-ending struggle”

Successful actor, Zac Efron recently spoke about his struggle with alcohol and drugs. After a high-profile trip to rehab, he appeared to continue his drinking and even injured himself so severely in a fall where he had to have his jaw wired shut! After seeking further help, Efron is now leading a healthier lifestyle.


Daniel Radcliffe

“I was drunk during Harry Potter filming”

Daniel Radcliffe, aka Harry Potter, admits that growing up in the spotlight was difficult for him and has opened in recent years about his struggles with alcoholism during adolescence. Radcliffe described drinking heavily to deal with self-consciousness, “I am a fun, polite person, and it turned me into a rude bore”


Bradley Cooper

“I would never be sitting here with you, no way, no chance [if I hadn’t quit]”

Famous for his roles in movies such as ‘The Hangover’, Cooper has been sober for more than a decade. After struggling with alcoholism and an addiction to painkillers, he became sober at age 29 and never looked back. 


Michael Phelps

23 times Olympic champion, Michael Phelps struggled publicly with alcohol dependency. In 2014, he pleaded guilty to drunk driving and was given a suspended sentence of 1 year in prison. He served a year and a half of probation while attending therapy and Alcoholics Anonymous. He also completed 45 days of inpatient addiction treatment at an Arizona treatment facility.


Being alcohol dependant can have many different effects on you and the people around you. We want to remove the stigma and show how common alcohol dependency can be and how it is not always the image that’s portrayed in the media of someone sleeping rough on the streets. 


For more support and guidance, check out our Take Control page here.


Enter our fantastic art competition to win prizes and help us highlight and fight stigma around alcohol dependency! More on the competition and prizes here.


You can also enter by uploading your art to social media and tagging DrinkLink – Facebook:@DrinkLink | Twitter:@DrinkLink_Org | Instagram: @DrinkLinkCharity

Or by using #ExpressDontStigmatise on social!


~Image by Zeg Young on Unsplash

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