Why Recovery Rocks with Kristen Johnston

Recovery Rocks is thrilled to welcome two-time Emmy award winner Kristen Johnston.

Kristen Johnston

Kristen Johnston

In the 90′s Kristen starred as Sally Solomon in the hit show ’3rd Rock from the Sun.’ But despite a long and acclaimed career as an actress on stage and screen, Kristen was battling a life threatening addiction to pain pills and alcohol. Now six and a half years sober, she recently wrote a book called ‘Guts: The Endless Follies and Tiny triumphs of a Giant Disaster’ chronicling her illness, rock bottom and journey into sobriety.


Despite what some people tried to tell her, Kristen’s career has flourished since she got clean and sober. She is currently starring in the hit TV show ‘The Exes’ on TVLand. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can catch up by watching free episodes on TVLand before the season finale this Wednesday. It will get you in the groove for Season 3 which starts in December.

Since getting sober Kristen has founded and is the Executive Director of SLAM (Sobriety, Learning And Motivation). 
SLAM’s goal is to see that NYC build’s it’s first, and desperately needed, sober high school. There are over 25 such schools flourishing across the US—FOUR in the Boston area ALONE.
Kristen is determined to start a school in New York, If you want to learn more about SLAM, you can do so here. More importantly if you want to support SLAM, click here.
I will be writing more about SLAM in a later post, sign up for notifications if you want to learn more about sober high schools..

Sobriety is Kristen’s passion, sick of the shame and secrecy that surrounds addiction and alcoholism, she has consiously decided to speak out about her experiences in order to help others do the same.
Which is also why she took part ‘The Anonymous People’ Greg Williams stunning documentary about addiction.

1) Describe your ‘rock bottom.’
Hmmm…well, since my entire book ‘Guts’ is about that, I won’t go into too much detail. Let’s just say that due to a prolonged love affair with Vicodin & red wine, unbeknownst to me I had developed a gastric ulcer. I was doing ‘Love Song’ with Cillian Murphy on the West End in London and all through rehearsals I felt (and looked) just awful. Puffy and miserable with a vicious case of heartburn.

After opening night, my guts ripped open & I became septic. Meaning my guts were leaking stuff out into my body. It sucked, badly. I was in the hospital (or as you Brits like to say “in ‘ospital”) for two months. Chelsea Westminster, for those who care.

Why don’t I just let GUTS explain it to you: 
(This is after a night of absolute horror and indescribable agony in my Flat near Kings’ Road. I finally got to ‘ospital and after about thirty or forty shots of morphine, I finally felt some relief. )

“I don’t know how long I snuggled into my downey-soft morphine duvet, but suddenly the mood in the ward shifted. “Something’s happening” I thought to myself just as a team of about 10 impossibly serious looking people rounded the corner. It took an embarrassingly long time for me to realize that they were coming towards me. Which was baffling, until I realized that the hospital must have finally realized that ‘Ivana Humpalot’ was in their very hospital, and that they had quickly assembled an impressive-looking welcoming committee to apologize for their previous unpleasantness. I smiled forgivingly.

The group took formation around my bed, a well-practiced ballet designed to impress. A few of them looked like they had just started grade school. Not one of them looked older than 23. That is, with the very notable exception of their leader. As he walked towards me, I have this fuzzy and hopefully untrue memory of my jaw dropping open. (Oh dear God, please tell me I shut it at some point.) He reach out his gorgeous hand to shake my and introduced himself. This man was so elegant, darkly stunning, and breathtakingly handsome, I instantly thought of one of those impossibly perfect heroes found only in one of those Danielle Steele novels my sister used to beg me to read aloud. “His icy eyes focused on her pillowy lips and suddenly she knew she was his, forever….” We could easily spend an entire Saturday afternoon doing this, laughing until our faces hurt.


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