Anne Hathaway Talks Giving Up Drinking

By Kelly Burch 04/19/19

Hathaway said that she was surprised about the media attention her announcement to give up drinking has garnered.

Anne Hathaway

Anne Hathaway's decision to quit drinking—until her three-year-old son Jonathan is grown up and out of the house—isn't that deep. She hasn't taken a moral stance on drinking. Hangovers just don't go well with parenting, she says.  

“I didn’t put [a drink] down because my drinking was a problem. I put it down because the way I drink leads me to have hangovers and those were the problem,” Hathaway told Boston Common magazine. “My last hangover lasted for five days. When I’m at a stage in my life where there is enough space for me to have a hangover, I’ll start drinking again, but that won’t be until my kid is out of the house.”

In January, Hathaway mentioned her decision to cut out drinking. She was surprised about the attention that it got. It was a personal decision, not a matter of principle. 

“I just want to make this clear: Most people don’t have to do such an extreme thing. I don’t think drinking is bad,” she said. “It’s just the way I do it—which I personally think is really fun and awesome—is just not the kind of fun and awesome that goes with having a child for me. But this isn’t a moralistic stance.”

Hathaway first mentioned her sobriety on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, according to USA Today

She said, ”I don’t totally love the way I (drink) and (my son is) getting to an age where he really does need me all the time in the mornings. I did one school run one day where I dropped him off at school, I wasn’t driving, but I was hungover and that was enough for me. I didn’t love that one.”

Hathaway told Boston Common that while she doesn’t want to tell other people what to do, she does want to be public about things that are helping her live a healthier life.  

“I’ve recently been on a streak where things are just starting to work, so I can share that with people, and they can take from it what resonates and ignore what doesn’t,” she said. “I am not some relentless self-improver, but I am trying to learn to live in the world with as little pain as possible.”

She also mentioned the changes that are coming to Hollywood because of the #MeToo movement. 

“There are moments of seismic change, and I can’t imagine going back. The people that get it really get it,” she said. “The biggest obstacles at this point are people who claim to get it but haven’t done the work. I think it’s going to take everyone examining how much privilege they have and how it is being used and taking responsibility for creating equality. It’s going to take everyone.”

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Kelly Burch writes about addiction and mental health issues, particularly as they affect families. Follow her on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn.