Kit Harington Opens Up About Surviving 'Pretty Traumatic' Addiction Struggles

"I'm a very, very happy, content, sober man," Harington told The Sunday Times. The Game of Thrones star visited a rehab facility for addiction in 2019 and welcomed a baby boy with wife Rose Leslie earlier this year

Kit Harington Rose Leslie
Photo: Neilson Barnard/Getty

Kit Harington had to overcome some personal issues before he was ready to become a father with wife Rose Leslie.

The two-time Emmy Award nominee, 34, recently revealed that he "went through some pretty horrible stuff" after Game of Thrones ended in 2019. "Things that have happened to me since Thrones ended, and that were happening during Thrones, were of a pretty traumatic nature and they did include alcohol," he told The Sunday Times.

"You get to a place where you feel like you are a bad person, you feel like you are a shameful person. And you feel that there's no way out, that's just who you are. And getting sober is the process of going, 'No, I can change,'" Harington continued. "One of my favourite things I learnt recently is that the expression 'a leopard doesn't change its spots' is completely false: that a leopard actually does change its spots. I just think that's the most beautiful thing. It really helped. That was something I kind of clung to; the idea that I could make this huge fundamental change in who I was and how I went about my life."

He previously checked into the Privé-Swiss retreat in Connecticut back in May 2019, noting that he was treated for "mainly alcohol" during his stay. "Kit has decided to utilize this break in his schedule as an opportunity to spend some time at a wellness retreat to work on some personal issues," Harington's rep told PEOPLE at the time.

Harington shared with The Sunday Times that he also experienced suicidal thoughts. "Yes of course. I went through periods of real depression where I wanted to do all sorts of things," he explained, adding that he hoped being open about it would "maybe help someone, somewhere. But I definitely don't want to be seen as a martyr or special. I've been through something, it's my stuff. If it helps someone, that's good."

Rose Leslie and Kit Harington
Steve Granitz/WireImage

The Eternals actor also discussed the toll it took on his marriage to Game of Thrones costar Leslie, 34, with whom he tied the knot in June 2018 in Scotland. "You can imagine the stresses that it causes to those around you," he explained.

"I will say about my addictions that I kept them very, very quiet and I was incredibly secretive and incredibly locked up with them," Harington added. "So they came as quite a surprise to the people around me. Which is quite often the case, I guess."

After revealing their pregnancy in September, when Leslie posed with her baby bump in Make Magazine, the couple's rep confirmed to PEOPLE in February that they welcomed a baby boy and are "very, very happy."

RELATED VIDEO: A Baby Boy! Game of Thrones Stars Rose Leslie and Kit Harington Welcome First Child

Harington admitted that the first three months of fatherhood were "slightly torture," describing it as "a kind of hell" before he got the hang of things. "There's something about having a child that is the most physically draining thing," he said. "My hat goes off to any single parent. Any single parent, you're a f---ing genius. I don't know how you do it. Because it's more exhausting than everything I did on Thrones."

The proud dad made sure to clarify that life is "wonderful" now with his growing family. "I have a child and my relationship is brilliant … I'm a very, very happy, content, sober man," he shared.

Harington will next appear in an episode of the new season of Modern Love, dropping on Amazon Prime Aug. 13.

Related Articles