Roger Ebert on Alcoholism and Recovery

About twenty years ago, when I was researching Alcoholics Anonymous in Urbana, Illinois, I found out inadvertently that Roger Ebert was a member. I did not of course tell anyone until he told his own story publicly in 2009. As someone who works in the addiction field, I make it a point to inform people who are struggling with addiction that a large number of extraordinarily successful people were once — just like them — lost in alcohol and drugs. In short, there is hope for recovery, indeed in some cases for a life that is even better than what came before the carnage of addiction:

In August 1979, I took my last drink. It was about four o’clock on a Saturday afternoon, the hot sun streaming through the windows of my little carriage house on Dickens. I put a glass of scotch and soda down on the living room table, went to bed, and pulled the blankets over my head. I couldn’t take it any more.

The rest of Ebert’s story here.

Author: Keith Humphreys

Keith Humphreys is the Esther Ting Memorial Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University and an Honorary Professor of Psychiatry at Kings College London. His research, teaching and writing have focused on addictive disorders, self-help organizations (e.g., breast cancer support groups, Alcoholics Anonymous), evaluation research methods, and public policy related to health care, mental illness, veterans, drugs, crime and correctional systems. Professor Humphreys' over 300 scholarly articles, monographs and books have been cited over thirteen thousand times by scientific colleagues. He is a regular contributor to Washington Post and has also written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Monthly, San Francisco Chronicle, The Guardian (UK), The Telegraph (UK), Times Higher Education (UK), Crossbow (UK) and other media outlets.

One thought on “Roger Ebert on Alcoholism and Recovery”

  1. Roger Ebert was a most remarkable man in many ways.

    He is one of the few people I will miss that I never met.

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