Drag Race UK’s The Vivienne opens up about drug addiction

The Vivienne

The Vivienne broke down on this week’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, revealing she had to move to Spain to kick a drug addiction.

Usually nonchalant, The Vivienne has remained fairly impersonal so far on the show, keeping much of her personal life to herself.

But this week, a conversation in the werk-room about drag culture and partying led her to open up.

Blu Hydrangea said the culture can sometimes make her feel displaced as she doesn’t really enjoy taking drugs and drinking.

“In Belfast, there’s not that big a scene for the gays,” she said.

“[But], the scene can get a little crazy, but I’m not that big a drinker or anything, or like into drugs.”

During the conversation, Cheryl Hole said the culture encouraged her to drink every night.

“My life was just gigs, gigs, work, work, and being surrounded by drugs 24/7,” she said.

“I’d get carried away and drink every night, and I wouldn’t come home for, like, four days.”

The Vivienne then chimed in, telling her fellow competitors of the dangers which arise from taking party pills.

“There’s no bigger high than going on stage and entertaining people.

“So then coming off that stage and going ‘I need it. I need to feel it again!’

“Three of my friends died and it didn’t stop me.”

In the green room, The Vivienne revealed her addiction made her feel isolated.

She also admitted her parents still are not aware of her substance abuse.

“It was the loneliest part of my life,” she said.

“I was killing myself and my family don’t even know.”

Drug addiction a common topic on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’

It feels fitting former contestant, Katya Zamolodchikova, made a surprise appearance on Drag Race UK this week.

During her stint in the American version of the competition, she also discussed her struggles with addiction.

“I’ve been completely sober for the past year and a half,” she said.

“Most of the time I’m fine but being away from my support network has been brutal.

“I didn’t realise how badly I’ve never actually been able to love myself.”

Katya has openly struggled with addiction for years, admitting early last year she had relapsed.

“I had a complete total psychotic break from reality,” she admitted in an interview on podcast Whimsically Volatile.

“I couldn’t tell what was real or not real,” she added.

In an attempt to kick her addiction, The Vivienne told Drag Race UK viewers she had to leave the country and start fresh.

“I moved to Spain and sorted my act out. I met David and I’m two years clean of drugs,” she said.

“And I feel amazing for it.”

The Vivienne said she hopes her position on Drag Race UK will allow her to reach out to others with addiction.

She said she wants them to know they have the strength to get sober.

“I wanna help people. I fell into that trap,” she said.

“With the support and help of friends, family, even yourself, you can stop it. You can do it.”

If you need support, help is available from QLife on 1800 184 527 or online at QLife.org.au, Lifeline on 13 11 14, or beyondblue on 1300 22 4636.

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Jade Fitzpatrick

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