Kathy Griffin keeps fans updated on her recovery from lung surgery, saying she will not take narcotic painkillers after battling an addiction to prescription pills.
The 60-year-old comedian, who revealed her stage 1 lung cancer diagnosis earlier this week, took Instagram and Twitter on Wednesday to say the surgery she underwent to remove half of her left lung was “a little more than I expected.”
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“Tonight will be my first night without narcotic pain medication,” she added. “Hello Tylenol, my new best friend!”
In a Monday night interview with ABC News’ Nightline, Griffin revealed that she struggled with drug addiction and suicidal thoughts in the years since. her controversial photoshoot 2017 with a gag resembling the severed head of former President Donald Trump.
“The last time I was in a hospital was in June 2020 when I tried to take my life and overdosed on prescription pills,” she wrote in her post on Wednesday. “With over a year clean and drug-free, I now know I can do this and anything I want without those devilish pills.”
She continued, “You know what? I’m more scared of drugs and addiction than cancer. So I think I’ll be fine.”
Griffin’s representative Alex Spieller told USA TODAY on Monday that her surgery “went well and according to plan” after the comedian announced her lung cancer diagnosis, despite never smoking.
“Hopefully after that no chemo or radiation and I should be able to function normally with my breathing,” Griffin wrote Monday. “I should be back to work in a month or less as usual. It’s been a fucking four years, I’ve been trying to get back to work, make you laugh and entertain you, but it’ll come good with me.”
During her “Nightline” interview on Monday night, Griffin told co-anchor Juju Chang that “before her Trump controversy” she had messed with a pill addiction in a way that wasn’t right, but said her addiction was “really in a higher order.” gear kicked” when the Trump thing happened.” She said she became addicted to pills prescribed for her by a doctor.
Kathy Griffin Reveals Lung Cancer Diagnosis drug addiction and ‘obsessive’ suicidal thoughts
As she got deeper into addiction, Griffin said, suicide “became almost an obsessive thought” and “started to really convince (herself) that it was the right decision.”
“Hearing from people in my own industry, ‘It’s over. Get out of the country for five years. You’ve put our industry to shame’, over and over. It definitely touched me,” she said. “And so I got to the point where I kind of agreed. Maybe it’s time for me to go, and I’ve had a great life, and I don’t think there’s a next chapter for me. ”
She added: “I just thought, I’ll just take a few pills and I’ll just go to sleep.”
After a challenging detox that included tremors so severe that her husband Randy Bick had to help her brush her teeth, Griffin said she has now recovered from her addiction and is optimistic about her future.
“I feel like I’m going to get another chapter at 60, and that’s what everyone said wouldn’t happen,” she said. “I thought, ‘Even if I get another chapter, what’s that? I’m going to sit here and never work again?’ And it’s like, no. I think anything is possible.”
If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or are concerned about a friend or loved one, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 [TALK] free, confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can also reach the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” at 741741.
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Contributions: Jenna Ryu