Wendy Williams On Past Cocaine Addiction: I Was A Functioning Addict

By Victoria Kim 07/20/18

“A functioning addict has several alarm clocks, you’re organized. It’s a miracle I was able to stop.”

Wendy Williams

After hosting a star-studded gala on Wednesday to benefit youth in recovery, TV personality and host Wendy Williams discussed her own experience with cocaine abuse, which began during her days on the radio.

I was a functioning addict though. I would report to work on time and I walked in and all of my coworkers, and including my bosses, would know but instead of firing me, you see, I would grab my headphones and arrogantly walk into the studio and dare them to fire me because I was making ratings,” said the host of The Wendy Williams Show.

“[A] functioning addict has several alarm clocks, you’re organized,” she continued. “It’s a miracle I was able to stop.”

On Wednesday, Williams hosted a fundraising gala in New York City to unveil the “Be Here” campaign, to benefit Facing Addiction with NCADD—which advocates for people who struggle with drug abuse as well as their families—and her own family’s organization, The Hunter Foundation, which supports young people in recovery.

The gala landed on Williams’ birthday, July 18, and was attended by singer-songwriter Johnny Gill, singer Keri Hilson, rapper Remy Ma, actress Selenis Levya, singer Mario, and CNN host Don Lemon, among others.

“I wanted to use the biggest day of the year (my birthday) to encourage family and friends to give to this cause which will, in turn, help those in need,” said Williams in a statement. “Instead of giving me gifts, I am encouraging everyone to donate.”

The goal of the “Be Here” campaign is to raise $10 million. The event honored Chaka Khan with “The Survivor Award” to recognize the funk queen for her resilience in her own battles with substance abuse.

“I have seen addiction up-close,” said Williams. “As a mother, wife, daughter, and friend, I cannot stand by and do nothing while there are people struggling to overcome substance abuse. Life is too short and we need to come together to help others.”

The funds raised will specifically go to mentorship and counseling through the Youth Leader Program, and to fund clinical research on the effects of K2, also known as “synthetic marijuana.”

According to the Hunter Foundation’s website, the family’s dedication to the cause of supporting recovery was deepened by their son, who was “given K2,” triggering the family to take action. “This personal experience deepened the Hunters’ life mission to fortify organizations that increase public awareness about addiction and abuse and help youths live healthy, drug-free lives,” the website reads.

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