You don’t have to know who Deryck Whibley is or have ever even heard of his band, Sum 41, to understand the human agony of what he has done to himself.
The Canadian-born singer who used to be married to Avril Lavigne just nearly died from alcoholism. His kidneys and liver shut down and he was basically comatose for a week. He’s 34. Doctors told him if he takes one more drink he will die.
I sometimes get grief for choosing not to drink and I tell people different things when they ask why. Although I’m not labelled an alcoholic, I certainly have those tendencies. Lately I’ve decided to say, “I pickled myself when I was in my twenties. I don’t need to drink anymore!” And that’s very close to the truth.
The rock and roll lifestyle is dangerous for anyone. Living on the road, hotel to hotel, and all of the temptations, luxuries and sheer boredom that come along with it can leave people searching for relief. Some take up cycling. Others turn to substances. This is how Whibley normally looks:
This is Whibley leaving the hospital.
A few years ago we lost a pal who was on the waiting list for a liver transplant after decades of abusive drinking. It’s tougher for someone who drank heavily to even get on the list and because it takes 3-3 1/2 years to get a liver, they often die before one becomes available. It’s no laughing matter. Maybe now Mr. Whibley will learn to cope without stimulants, or he’ll join a long list of substance abusers who died way too young.