‘I Don’t Know If I Would’ve Survived Childhood Without Alcoholism’: Selma Blair Opens Up About Decades-Long Struggle With Addiction

Selma Blair attends the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 24, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California.
(Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

Actress Selma Blair said she’s not sure she “would’ve survived childhood without alcoholism” as she opened up about her decades-long struggle with addiction after having her first drink at the age of 7.

The 49-year-old actress detailed her battle with alcohol in her new memoir, titled “Mean Baby: A Memoir Of Growing Up,” in which she talked about how drinking was “a huge comfort” and “coping mechanism” for her at a young age, and said she doesn’t “know if I would’ve survived childhood without alcoholism,” reported People magazine in a piece published Wednesday.

“The first time I got drunk it was a revelation,” Blair shared in an excerpt obtained by the magazine. “I always liked Passover. As I took small sips of the Manischewitz I was allowed throughout the seder a light flooded through me, filling me up with the warmth of God. But the year I was seven, when we basically had Manischewitz on tap and no one was paying attention to my consumption level, I put it together: the feeling was not God but fermentation.”

“I thought ‘Well this is a huge disappointment, but since it turns out I can get the warmth of the Lord from a bottle, thank God there’s one right here,’” she added. “I got drunk that night. Very drunk. Eventually, I was put in my sister Katie’s bed with her. In the morning, I didn’t remember how I’d gotten there.”

The “Legally Blonde” star said that in the beginning, she just took “quick sips whenever my anxiety would alight” and “usually barely even got tipsy.” She also talked about how she “became an expert alcoholic, adept at hiding my secret.”

The “Hellboy” star said she kept drinking through her teens and into her college years. One excerpt details how she says she was sexually assaulted on a college trip after a day of binge drinking.

“I don’t know if both of them raped me. One of them definitely did,” Selma wrote, per the outlet. “I made myself small and quiet and waited for it to be over. I wish I could say what happened to me that night was an anomaly, but it wasn’t. I have been raped, multiple times, because I was too drunk to say the words ‘Please. Stop.’ Only that one time was violent. I came out of each event quiet and ashamed.”

Blair said that opening up in the memoir about her experiences was one of the things that helped her finally be able to heal.

“My sense of trauma was bigger than I knew,” the actress shared. “I did not realize that assault was so central in my life. I had so much shame and blame. I’m grateful I felt safe enough to put it on the page. And then can work on it with a therapist and with other writing, and really relieve that burden of shame on myself.”

The “Cruel Intentions” star has been sober since 2016, and said she’s now sharing her story in hopes that it helps others struggling.

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