Ozzy Osbourne opens up about sobriety: “I should have been dead 1,000 times”

“I thought I’d be drinking ’til the day I die,” says Ozzy Osbourne, who’s been sober for about seven years.  The rock legend, his wife Sharon and son Jack open up about addiction and recovery in a chat with Variety.

Ozzy explains that his substance abuse began because “I’ve never liked the way I felt.”  As he explains. “I’ve had great success in my life, but I’ve never felt great about myself. And so, from a very early age, I used to sniff fumes, all kinds of things, anything to get me out of my head.”

Sharon tells Variety that she only learned that alcoholism was a disease 36 years ago, when Elizabeth Taylor went to the Betty Ford Center.  She immediately insisted that Ozzy go as well, so he left the day after his daughter Kelly was born. Unfortunately, it didn’t take, and Sharon says she spent “years” terrified that he would die.

After more trips to rehab, plus the realization that his issues were keeping him from being a good dad, Ozzy finally sobered up. 

“You realize the kids have got this fear in their eyes,” he says. “I mean, it’s a very selfish disease. My kids needed me.”

“I’m 72 years of age. Most of the people that I drank with are dead. And the ones that aren’t, that still continue to drink, are going to be dead soon. It’s not a happy ending,” he admits

“I’m lucky. There’s nothing special about me,” Ozzy adds. “I should have been dead 1,000 times. I’m not being big-headed about that, or invincible. It doesn’t take much to kill you.”

Now that Ozzy’s sober, Sharon says, it’s “very calm” and “very pleasant” in the Osbourne house.

“It’s great for our whole family. It really is,” she adds.

By Andrea Dresdale
Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.