Eminem proudly celebrates 11 years of sobriety with powerful Instagram post
Throughout his career, Eminem has made it no secret that he struggled with addiction problems.
Back in 2007, the rapper - whose real name is Marshall Mathers - almost took an accidental overdose after developing a severe addiction to sleeping pills. This is something he opened up about in his song Castle, from his 2017 album Revival. In one of the verses, he raps: "Your dad’s at the end of his rope/ I’m sliding down a slippery slope/ Anyway, sweetie, I better go, I’m getting sleepy … Love, Dad, s**t, I don’t know."
The song is addressed to his daughter, Hailie Jade, and he later revealed that it was on her 12th birthday that he almost died.
With this as his wake-up call, he checked into rehab in 2008 - and he's been sober ever since.
Speaking to Rolling Stone back in 2011, Eminem revealed that his constant pill-taking had noticeable effects on his day-to-day life.
"I’m very paranoid about writer’s block – I had it for four years, and it drove me f*****g crazy. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t think of shit," he said. "The pills had a lot to do with it. Just wiping out brain cells. I don’t know if it sounds like I’m making excuses, but the absolute truth is a lot of my memory is gone. I don’t know if you’ve ever taken Ambien, but it’s kind of a memory-eraser. That s**t wiped out five years of my life."
The rapper also divulged what exactly it was that set him on the road to addiction. According to him, it all started when his career took off. He'd take drugs at after parties and on tours, but was able to take a break from it when he was back home. Later on, though, it became unmanageable.
"It probably started to become a problem around the 8 Mile movie. We were doing 16 hours on the set, and you had a certain window where you had to sleep," he said. "One day somebody gave me an Ambien, and it knocked me the f**k out. I was like, 'I need this all the time.' So I got a prescription. After four or five months, your tolerance starts building. You start breaking off another piece of the pill that’s supposed to be for tomorrow."
After years of hiding it, the rapper finally admitted he was struggling:
"Toward the end, I don’t think the s**t ever put me to sleep for more than two hours," Mathers admitted. "It’s very similar to what I’ve read about Michael [Jackson]. I don’t know exactly what he was doing, but I read that he kept getting up in the middle of the night, asking for more. That’s what I was doing – two, three times a night, I would get up and take more."
Today, he's obviously doing much better. With more than a decade of sobriety behind him, and his family and friends for support, hopefully he'll never struggle with addiction again.