Naomi Campbell opens up on cocaine addiction
International fashion mogul, Naomi Campbell recently laid bare the darkest chapter of her illustrious career, exposing the harrowing struggles with drug addiction that nearly claimed her life during the glamorous ’90s era.
The supermodel, renowned for her iconic runway presence, bared her soul in AppleTV+’s groundbreaking docuseries, “The Super Models,” where she courageously confronted her turbulent past.
Campbell’s confession was nothing short of raw and unfiltered as she disclosed how she once sought refuge in cocaine to numb the pain of childhood trauma and the heart-wrenching loss of her close friend, Italian fashion maestro Gianni Versace.
With a heavy heart, Campbell admitted, “I guess when I started using, that was one of the things I tried to cover up, was grief. Addiction is such a … bulls—t thing, it really is. You think, ‘Oh, it’s gonna heal that wound.’ It doesn’t. It can cause such huge fear and anxiety. So I got really angry.”
The haunting shadows of her past loomed even larger when Versace was tragically murdered outside his Miami Beach home in 1997. She recalled how Versace had been a driving force in her life, continually pushing her to achieve more than she thought possible. When he was gone, her grief spiraled out of control.
“He was very sensitive to feeling me, like, he pushed me,” Campbell recalled, her voice tinged with sorrow. “He would push me to step outside and go further when I didn’t think I had it within myself to do it. So when he died, my grief became very bad.”
For five agonizing years, the supermodel grappled with substance abuse while attempting to navigate the world of high fashion. Her struggle reached a frightening climax in 1999 when she collapsed during a photoshoot. It was a pivotal moment that served as a stark wake-up call.
“When you try to cover something up, your feelings — you spoke about abandonment. I tried to cover that with something,” Campbell confessed in the docuseries. “You can’t cover it. I was killing myself. It was very hurtful.”
In the depths of despair, Campbell summoned the courage to seek professional help, checking into rehab. Reflecting on that pivotal decision, she stated, “I chose to go to rehab. It was one of the best and only things I could have done for myself at that time.”
She went on to reveal that the healing process has been a long and arduous journey, marked by battles with her inner demons. “It’s taken me many years to work on and deal with,” Campbell acknowledged. “And it does still come up sometimes. But I just now have the tools to deal with it when it comes up.”
In addition to her struggle with Versace’s tragic death, the supermodel has grappled with the haunting specter of childhood trauma stemming from her father’s abandonment. During a 2000 interview with Barbara Walters, featured in “The Super Models,” Campbell candidly discussed her complex emotions.
“There’s a lot of issues that I have from childhood,” she revealed. “Well, for instance, not knowing your father, not seeing your mother. That brings up a lot of — it manifests a lot of feelings.”
“One of those feelings, absolutely is anger,” she continued. “It’s a manifestation of a deeper issue, I think, anger. And that for me, I think is based on insecurity, self-esteem, and loneliness…”