After a difficult marriage with Charlie Sheen and his later, very public explosion, Denise Richards has admitted she found it hard shielding her children from the devastating glare of his obvious mental health and possible addiction problems.
Sheen’s meteoric capitulation hit the headlines almost on a daily basis for several months of 2011 but after he set off on his totally self-indulgent Violent Torpedo of Truthtour which received largely dreadful reviews, the spotlight turned to shine on other victims. For Denise, hiding it from their children was always going to be a difficult job.
At a time when Amy Winehouse was filling the front pages due to her young death in the grip of her addictions, Denise Richards decided the best course was to educate her two daughters, Sam (7) and Lola (6) about the illness of addiction in a way that they could understand.
“I was just lying to them about so much, and covering up things and totally lying,” she told Matt Lauer on the Today Show.
“It was just getting too confusing that I had to sit down with them.”
“It’s too early [for them to understand]. I told them enough for them to make sense of things that were going on,” she added.
The former Bond girl and star of Starship Troopers was on the receiving end of Sheen’s bile during his tour but the 41 year old was tough enough to let it all pass her by.
Celebrities and addictions often go hand in hand and for some reason too many people see it as applause-worthy when they see a public figure get caught in the net, perhaps not understanding that addiction is an illness which can literally kill.
Amy Winehouse’s father, Mitch, set up a clinic to help people suffering with substance dependency and Miley Cyrus was put through a stint in rehab by her father, Billy Ray, so that she would understand the dangers of alcoholism and other excesses, without ever having had a problem with them. Perhaps other young musicians and actors should have the same experience or work with addicts in order to understand how devastating the illness can be, not only to the individual but also their families and friends.
images: belfasttelegraph.co.uk, smh.com.au