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John Lennon’s Heroin Use While with The Beatles

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It is no secret that the infamous band The Beatles would do drugs together such as amphetamines and LSD. According to an article in Salon, John Lennon dealt with heroin addiction which had an effect on everyone around him. Lennon suggested in later interviews that him and his wife, Oko Yono’s arrest for drug possession and Ono’s miscarriage was what led to both of them experimenting with heroin. Lennon would also say that it was also because of the stress of his bandmates not accepting Ono as an equal to them that led to his experimentation as well.  He would experience violent mood swings that would make it hard for his fellow band members to speak reason with him. Musical historian Barry Miles said that Lennon’s band members used to be able to talk to Lennon about Ono’s influence straining the band’s recordings without having to worry about walking on eggshells around him.  Lennon would say in an interview at the 1968 exhibition at the Robert Fraser Gallery that he would just sniff heroin and not inject it, making it seem like he had his habit under control and hardly a problem. On August 22nd, 1969 after The Beatles final photo session of all of them together, Lennon and Ono decided to kick their habit once and for all. Because the UK’s National Health Service barely had opioid abuse treatments and not checking into a hospital in fear of being found out, Lennon and Ono felt their only option to being clean would be by quitting cold turkey. It was said that Lennon told Ono to tie him to a chair to prevent him from trying to use again as well as being in pain for 36 hours trying to rid himself of the drug. He even wrote a song called “Cold Turkey” to describe his struggling experience. When Lennon debuted the song to Bob Dylan, Lennon relapsed a few days later. It took several attempts for Lennon to get clean. In 1980 when Lennon spoke about how the BBC banned the song “Cold Turkey,” Lennon expressed how people need to understand the root cause of why someone would become addicted to drugs. While more is being done about drug treatment now compared to during Lennon’s time, we still have a long way to go as for the stigma of drug addiction and what more needs to be done about it.

If you or someone you love is struggling with mental health issues or addiction, now is the time to reach out for help. At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals who understand addiction in all its forms. The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor, you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan. We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit so you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us today at 844-413-2690.