What Friends Are For: Before George Michael's Death, Sir Elton John Tried To Help Him Curb His Drug Addiction

Date July 30, 2018 13:05

In 2016, the death of the iconic singer George Michael rocked the world in many ways. Besides the fact that Michael was one of the most successful solo artists in the UK, he ranks among the best-selling British acts of all time.


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His debut album Faith, released in 1987, sold over 25 million copies, cementing his position as one of music’s greats. He was friends with many of the music artists of the time, including fellow British singer, Sir Elton John.


In a special tribute performance after the passing of Michael, John reminisced about the good times they shared together, remembering how close they were. E! reported that John also wished he could have had his friend with him on stage for the final performance of their duet, Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me.


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In a new interview with Channel 4 News, Sir John opened up about his relationship with Michael, especially regarding his friend’s struggles with drug addiction. According to Sir John, he tried to help his friend but faced stiff resistance, as Michael was unwilling to accept he even had a problem, to begin with.

I tried to help but you can’t help people who don’t want to help themselves.

Sir John also recollected how his friend took out space in a popular publication at the time to call him out for meddling, essentially asking Sir John to mind his own business. For Sir John, it was twice as painful as he also dealt with addiction problems of his own for several years.

Michael was found dead in his Oxfordshire apartment on Christmas day, in 2016. A coroner’s report cited “natural causes” as the cause of death. He was aged 53.


Angry fans speak out

Some fans of Michael were not very pleased with Sir John’s statement about the late musician, suggesting he was wrong speaking about the resistance he experienced when he tried to help.

Still, it is common knowledge that most addicts resist help even when it is offered by friends, family members or close associates. Thankfully, more people consider Sir John’s statements a grim reminder that drug addiction can have dire consequences.

While it may be difficult providing support for addicts, resilience and empathy go a long way in making the process bearable. And there is always hope for a full recovery if an addict is willing to change.

READ ALSO: 10 Interesting Facts About Elton John

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