Stevie Nicks Opens Up About Her Cocaine Abuse

By Victoria Kim 10/01/14

The Fleetwood Mac singer recalled her frightening days as a cocaine addict and discussed what inspired her to seek treatment.

stevie nicks 2013.jpg

It has been almost three decades since Stevie Nicks checked into rehab for her cocaine abuse. As the singer prepared to kick off Fleetwood Mac’s latest tour—their first performance is on Tuesday in Minneapolis—she discussed the destructive time in her life.

The song “Mabel Normand,” which is on Nicks’ upcoming solo album 24 Karat Gold: Songs from the Vault, captures a time in Nicks’ life when she was at her “lowest point with the blow.” Nicks had watched a documentary about Mabel Normand, an actress and comedian from the 1920s who was a “terrible cocaine addict.” She felt a connection with the actress, which compelled her to write the song. Less than a year later, Nicks went to rehab at Betty Ford in 1986.

“The documentary really scared me, because I saw this beautiful girl go downhill so fast,” she told Billboard. “Sometimes you can’t see it in yourself, but you sure as heck can see it in someone else.”

Nicks was also compelled to check into rehab when a doctor warned that she would have a brain hemorrhage if she did one more line of coke. “I knew I was going to die and I didn’t want to die,” she told Uncut. “So I was on my way.”

After wrestling with a Klonopin addiction after kicking cocaine at Betty Ford, Nicks was embittered by her experience with the psychiatrist who kept increasing her dose of the tranquilizer. “These psychiatrists and the medical community are the worst drug dealers in the world,” she said. “These drugs will make you fat, ruin your life, make you miserable and destroy anything that you want to do. And nobody tells you that.”

After having spent millions of dollars on her cocaine habit, Nicks said she “would be happy if nobody had ever shown me that drug.”

“Suicide was never my MO. I’m basically a happy person.” she said. “I was a happy person back then. I just got addicted to coke, and that was a very bad drug for me.”

Please read our comment policy. - The Fix

Victoria is interested in anything that has to do with how mind-altering substances impact society. Find Victoria on LinkedIn or Tumblr