Kathy Griffin Calls Her Late in Life Pill Addiction 'Almost Comical' as She Reflects on Recovery

"Who the hell becomes a junkie in, like, their late 50s?" the comedian asked on the latest episode of The New York Times' Sway podcast

Kathy Griffin attends The Queerties 2020 Awards Reception at LA Liason on February 25, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.
Photo: Tibrina Hobson/Getty

Kathy Griffin is finding light in a dark situation.

The comedian and actress, 61, appeared on the most recent episode of The New York Times' Sway podcast, where she opened up — and cracked jokes — about her addiction to pills and past suicide attempts.

The conversation began when Griffin reflected on the controversy that followed after she posed with a (fake) bloody head meant to represent then-President Donald Trump in 2017, which put her in a dark place. Following the uproar, the star admitted, "I tried to kill myself."

"I think that I'm probably an addictive person, you know," Griffin shared on Thursday's episode.

"But you have to admit, it's almost, like, comical," she added. "Like, I went in the hospital for pill addiction at 59 years old. Who the hell becomes a junkie in, like, their late 50s? Me."

Kathy Griffin attends HBO's Post Emmy Awards Reception on September 22, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Kevork Djansezian/Getty

Continuing her candid conversation, Griffin revealed the fallout made her miss out on various business opportunities — and she was even put under watch by the Secret Service.

"I didn't know what to do with myself," the My Life on the D-List star explained to host Kara Swisher.

"I was just such a crazy workaholic," she continued. "And all of a sudden, I had this time on my hands, and then I was depressed, and things just weren't looking up."

"And then, you fall into the, like, life will be better for my husband without me around," added Griffin of her love Randy Bick, whom she wed in the early hours of 2020 on New Year's Day. "It just came to a point where I really, I was convinced, like, I've had a good run on this planet, and now it's time for me to go."

Griffin also explained that the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic also played a part in her addiction to pills.

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"Not to blame COVID, but then COVID also is like, just laying around all day and trying to figure out life," she said. "So that was rough, although it was a good thing, ultimately, and it was sobering, quite literally."

When asked by Swisher to detail what her drugs of choice were, Griffin said she was taking Oxycontin and benzodiazepines, including Valium, Klonopin, and Ativan, as well as Adderall and Provigil.

RELATED VIDEO: Kathy Griffin Shares 'Funny' Joke from Her Doctor While Recovering from Lung Removal Surgery

"I was doing, like, a rich white lady speedball, basically," the Search Party actress said.

Griffin also noted that she got "addicted like the classic story ... I had injuries, and then blah, blah, blah" — and her addiction "got away from me." She added: "Like, I kind of knew it was getting bad, but then I didn't."

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It wasn't until after two suicide attempts that the comedian decided to seek help for her addiction.

After telling doctors that she had attempted suicide, Griffin was admitted to the psychiatric ward, which she called a sobering moment. "I'm there, in the hospital psych ward for three days, and boy, that will sober you up like nothing," she explained. "You have no drugs, you're just shaking, and I'm looking at the ceiling and just reassessing life choices and you have nothing but your own thoughts."

Now, Griffin detailed that she has clinicians who help her throughout her sober journey after her hospital stay, which she credits with changing her for the better. "That really saved my life," she admitted.

"Through that process, you are kind of unpacking anything and everything," added Griffin. "Everything is kind of surrounded by that a little bit."

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, please contact the SAMHSA helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

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