Nicole Kidman Shares What She's Learned From Keith Urban's Substance Use Battle

Nicole Kidman Shares What She's Learned From Keith Urban's Substance Use Battle

By McCarton Ackerman 11/28/16

“At some point, you just have to say, ‘I love you and I’m here when you decide to do the work. If you don’t, then that’s it.’”

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Nicole Kidman Shares What She's Learned From Keith Urban's Substance Use Battle

Nicole Kidman has never personally struggled with a substance use disorder, but she’s learned plenty about it after a decade of being married to country singer Keith Urban.

The actress opened up in the latest edition of The Jess Cagle Interview about what she’s learned from her husband's battle with addiction. Kidman acknowledged that it was a struggle to accept that she couldn’t do anything to help Urban in his addiction other than be supportive, but said it was an essential lesson for both people in a relationship to realize.

“There is absolutely help out there. But you can’t save somebody. They’ve got to save themselves. [That’s] a very big thing for people like me who go, ‘I can take care of you. I can do it,’” said Kidman. “At some point, you just have to say, ‘I love you and I’m here when you decide to do the work. If you don’t, then that’s it.’”

Urban has previously said that Kidman was the catalyst for both his relapse and current sobriety. He described himself as a largely functioning substance user during the ‘90s, but finally checked into rehab in 1998. But after six years of sobriety, he found the loneliness he experienced when his wife was away too much to bear, and suffered a relapse.

The actress finally staged an intervention after returning home from a movie shoot and Urban re-entered treatment in 2006.

"When she would go away, I would find myself feeling very alone, very lost, and vulnerable to my old ways. We had just gotten married and this entity in my life is coming just to crush and kill everything that I've got,” he said to Rolling Stone in 2014. “I was very, very blessed to have Nic call an intervention on me. I didn't give a shit about anything except turning a corner in my life and doing whatever it took for that.”

In May, Urban's uncle credited his lasting sobriety to Kidman. "None of us expected it to last," the uncle told Daily Mail at the time. "That's credit to her. It's as much for Nicole and his love for her." The singer, too, remains convinced Kidman saved his life.

“[The marriage] survived, but it’s a miracle that it did. I was spiritually awoken with her. I use the expression 'I was born into her,' and that's how I feel,” he said in June to Rolling Stone. "And for the first time in my life, I could shake off the shackles of addiction."

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.

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