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 Instant stardom, "the least favorite Osbourne," and the drugs of Los Angeles...



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 Mom's cancer, holding his own with grown-up druggies, and OxyContin...



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 Detoxing ugly, then into rehab...



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 On-Air: 'The Osbournes'




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— by Gideon Yago

There are certain clichés about the select few who get flung into superstardom at an early age. If a young star isn't ultimately found strung out and/or holding up a cash-and-carry by their mid-20s, many people are either shocked or palpably disappointed.  But while drugs and debauchery make for pat story lines, they also ruin lives — and not just privileged teenage lives.  Jack Osbourne got addicted to a nasty cocktail of pain pills including OxyContin, and in that respect, he is like many kids his age: OxyContin continues to spread as a party drug in rural, suburban and urban areas.  But unlike many 17-year-olds, Jack also had the guts to go to his parents with his problem, knowing full well that a trip to rehab would be a full-on media event. Whatever you make of Jack Osbourne, he is a young man who deserves immense credit not only for tackling his addiction in public but also for being so forthright and honest about what drove him to abuse drugs in the first place.

Gideon Yago: How was rehab?

Jack Osbourne: It was good. It was really good. I went in there with the mentality of "I'll do my time. I'm just gonna get out of here and I'll be fine." I did a lot of soul searching.

Yago: Was there anything that just shocked you to learn about yourself?

Osbourne: I have a tendency to really stuff things. I don't really express, you know? Like, express certain feelings and stuff.

Yago: Anything in particular?

Osbourne: I'd read things, like people criticizing me. "You're the least favorite Osbourne. Can we vote you out of the house?" Sh-- like that. And I would be like, "F--- that," you know? But no one likes to read stuff about that, and I know you should probably never read sh-- like that. And probably the main thing that was getting to me was me mum's illness.

Yago: What was that doing to you? I can only imagine.

Osbourne: When my mum first told me she got sick, I didn't cry. I probably cried over my mum's illness twice. And that sh-- hurt a lot, you know? I was constantly just drowning it out.

Yago: How were you drowning it out?

Osbourne: Drinking and using.

Yago: Using what?

  Drug and Teen Substance Abuse

  DrugHelp Survey

  Heads Up: Real News About Drugs and Your Body

  National Clearinghouse for Alcohol & Drug Information

  NIDA's Spanish-language site on drug abuse

  NIDA's Spanish-language site on drug abuse

  Partnership for a Drug-Free America

  Planet Know

  Purdue Pharma's Painfully Obvious

  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

  Freevibe's Heads Up On Drug Abuse

Osbourne: Uh, a lot of opiate based drugs. OxyContin.

Yago: Anything else?

Osbourne: I had smoked pot and drank every day for two years. I was taking Vicodin by the handful. Valium, Xanax, Dilaudid, Lorcet, Lortab, Perocet, you name it.

Yago: That's a laundry list of stuff. How would you get your hands on it?

Osbourne: It's so easy. It's L.A., you know? You just get it from people.

Yago: Let's backtrack a little bit. You said you'd been drinking and smoking pot for two years.

Osbourne: Well, every day for two years. But I've been drinking and using since I was 13.

Yago: How have the last two years been for you?

Osbourne: It's been real weird. It wasn't how I expected my life to turn out. Especially, mainly pertaining to the show. It never crossed my mind that one day I'm gonna be big and famous and have my own TV show, you know? All of a sudden we are meeting with MTV, [and they're] saying, "You are gonna be doing a show, and you are gonna be followed around." When we were filming I never thought once about it coming out. And then when it came out, it was just such a ... it was like a shock to the body. Because ... I wanted to go one way, I was interning at a record label — OK, cool. I'm gonna do what my mom did, you know, work her way up in the music industry, the business side of things. I was comfortable with that. That was what I wanted to do. And then just suddenly I am thrown from that.

Yago: You describe it in these huge terms, your shock to the system ...

Osbourne: Because it was for me. It was super insane and just like, "What is this?"

Yago: How did it stress you out?

Osbourne: There's people outside our house; you get followed by photographers; you can't go out and have a cup of coffee with a friend without someone coming up to you with a picture and [saying,] "Sign this." I'm totally grateful for the fans my family has and I have; they gave me a lot of support when I was in treatment. But it was just odd, you know? It's stressful. Just the whole fact of being someone in the public eye.

Yago: Were you able to talk to your parents about how stressful it was for you?

Osbourne: Not really, because, going back to the stuffing, that is what I would stuff.

Yago: Was there a Jack Osbourne that existed here in this room for you that your parents didn't see, that your friends didn't see versus the one that everyone can recognize — you know, kid brother of America?

Osbourne: It was weird. There was the Jack Osbourne my parents knew, the Jack Osbourne my friends knew, and the Jack Osbourne the public knew.

Yago: Tell me who each of these three guys were.

Osbourne: The one my parents knew was the funny, facetious, nice, loving son my parents know, who is truly caring. With my friends it was a crazy, insane, drinking, using, party animal who knew how to have a good time. And with the public, it was the one they wanted to vote out of the house. Well, a lot of them.

Yago: And then who are you? I mean, what was going on for you then?

Osbourne: Where I felt comfortable was being the one that everyone liked to party with. And it was kind of the way I could fit in. Something a lot of people will have in common is drinking and using.

Yago: What did you like so much about being the party guy, the life of the party?

Osbourne: The party guy was just, you know, drunk Jack. It was just fun. I would do things I never thought I would do. Just stupid sh--, you know? Drunk Jack wound up in, like, parties with insane celebrities, hanging out with them. If I was sober they'd be like, "You are boring." I always had that. If I was sober, people wouldn't like me.

Yago: Did someone come up to you at a party and be like, "Jack, I'm sorry, you are bumming me out; I don't like you at all"?

Osbourne: No, but I'd think that they were thinking that.

Yago: Was there other stuff going on in your mind where you were interested in cutting yourself down?

Osbourne: Dad had his own thing, so in the equation, dad is in his own realm. Mum is kind of shortly behind my dad, so Kelly and I for a while were neck-and-neck, and sh-- kinda started taking off for Kelly and she had her own thing. I hate ... I don't want to come off like the jealous brother who wasn't getting the attention, but it was like no one was really into me anyway. I wasn't really a priority, and [the attention] was kinda all [on] my mum, dad and Kelly, even though now I know it's not true, but back then it was a very realistic thing for me. Keep in mind this is before mum's illness. My own thing was, you know, wake up at 5 in the afternoon, it's dark out, hang out, maybe take a shower, then start drinking, start smoking pot, go out with friends, get wasted.


NEXT: Mom's cancer, holding his own with grown-up druggies, and OxyContin...
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Photo: MTV News

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