Sex, Drugs, and Ozzy: Baby Boomers Are Struggling With Addiction
Call Now!
1-855-960-5456

Sex, Drugs, and Ozzy: Older Adults Are Struggling with Addiction

ozzy-osbourne-1Heavy metal rocker Ozzy Osbourne recently revealed to the public that he is receiving “intense therapy” for his sex addiction, a condition he says he has been secretly struggling with for six years.

The British icon, whose real name is John Michael Osbourne, says he has had multiple affairs throughout those six years that have affected his family and threatened to end his 34-year marriage to wife, Sharon.

He disclosed via a statement to the media in early August, saying, “Over the last six years, I have been dealing with a sex addiction,” after the media exposed his affair with his hair colorist.

“Out of bad comes good,” Ozzy said in the statement. “Since the press exposed this, I have gone into intense therapy. I am mortified at what my behavior has done to my family. I thank God that my incredible wife is at my side to support me.”

Sharon, 63, confirmed his treatment for sex addiction during an episode of The Talk, where she is a co-host.

“He’s been going [to] outpatient [therapy] for sex addiction for the last three months and after the tour … he goes into inpatient for three months,” she said. “It’s hard, because it affects the whole family … I’m proud that he’s come out and admitted it finally.”

Ozzy’s an Open Book About Substance Abuse Battles

It is one more admission to add to the list for Ozzy. He is no stranger to addiction, and the fact that he isn’t is widely known. Now 67, some regard the baby boomer as one of the most famous recovering addicts in history, a reputation he earned during the decades he abused drugs and alcohol. His nearly 50-year career is filled with stories about his drinking and drugging that took place with band members and while alone.

“Ozzy has made no secret of his battle with drink and drugs, which included a heroin addiction and a heavy cocaine habit alongside cannabis, LSD and a host of prescription medication which he would routinely down with bottles of booze,” writes The Daily Mirror.

In 1979, his erratic behavior linked to his issues with substance abuse prompted his Black Sabbath bandmates to kick him out of the group, and in the past, he has referred to a 40-year period of his life as a “bender,” slang for a wild binge-drinking spree. So, the aging metal icon has been candid and open about his struggles.

Ozzy and Black Sabbath recently reconnected to put on a farewell tour for fans. None of them drink or do drugs anymore, the rocker said.

The fact that Ozzy is still alive and kicking after his long history with drugs and alcohol was so puzzling to scientists that a few years back, they started to work on mapping his genetic code to see how he managed to live a long time despite his abuse.

Addiction in Later Life: Can We Talk About It?

During the episode of The Talk, his wife, Sharon, said it’s easier to disclose struggles with alcohol and drugs, but “when it’s somebody that has a sex addiction, it’s embarrassing,” she said.

Some may see it differently.

While drug and alcohol addiction could be easier to talk about because they are discussed more in the media (and because they affect a wide range of groups), people age 65 and older who are struggling with addiction aren’t what comes to mind when the subject is discussed.

There are people in Ozzy’s generation who continue to struggle with any, or perhaps all, of the three: addictions to alcohol, drugs, and sex. Yet, their challenges often don’t make it into the public forum on substance abuse. Such challenges do not come up in everyday conversation, and these issues are still hard to talk about for many in the 65-plus age group. For some, it is even harder to ask for the help they know they need or find the motivation to step foot into places where they can get it.

Seniors: A Silent Demographic

seniors-group-2

It is widely known that addiction does not discriminate and that it affects people of different ages and in different stages of their lives. However, certain groups of the population continue to suffer in silence and watch their lives become unmanageable before they spiral out of control.

Ozzy Osbourne’s courage to admit his sex addiction is more than just gossip mill fodder. This latest chapter in his life is an opportunity to address issues facing seniors with addiction, be it involving alcohol, drugs, sex, or other things. It also is a chance to encourage people in their golden years that they can make a new start, even if it happens later in life.

September is National Recovery Month, and in recognition of it, the Palm Beach Institute is taking a closer look at addiction among older people and how they are affected. In 2014, the older population–people who were age 65 and older–numbered at 46.2 million that year, which represented 14.5 percent of the US population, says the Administration on Aging.

According to the administration, “By 2060, there will be about 98 million older persons, more than twice their number in 2014,” and people who are age 65 and older “are expected to grow to be 21.7 percent of the population by 2040.”

What’s Next?

We can expect that the issues today’s seniors face, which include addiction, will only continue, and they deserve our attention and focus. This four-part series will explore addiction and dependence in older adults–why it happens, who it happens to, and what can be done about it.

Stay tuned next Tuesday, Sept. 13, for “Sex, Drugs, and Ozzy: Age Won’t Slow Down Senior Drinking,” which addresses alcohol and substance abuse addiction among older adults.

Need Help?

Substance abuse among the aging and elderly often goes unnoticed or undiagnosed, especially in longtime drug and/or alcohol users. If you, or someone you know, have an older parent, spouse or other family member, friend or someone else you are concerned about who is an older person battling addiction, call (844) 318-0071 now to speak with one of our Palm Beach Institute specialists. They can help you find a treatment program tailored to your specific needs today. They are standing by around the clock, waiting for your call.

Leave a Reply