Nick Cave shares advice on battling loss and suffering from grief
(Credit: Henry W. Laurisch)

Nick Cave discusses how he survived heroin addiction

Nick Cave has opened up to a fan about how he survived his heroin addiction and why the most important thing for his recovery was attending Narcotics Anonymous meetings.

The Bad Seeds frontman has been frank and honest about his tough battle with heroin addiction around the time of 1988 album Tender Prey. He has now revealed that a key aspect to eventually overcoming his demons was regularly attending meetings held by the support group. Cave has praised Narcotics Anonymous in the latest edition of his Red Hand Files after he was asked for advice by a fan called Evan, who is a recovering heroin addict.

Cave set out his advice for Evan in the latest edition of his Red Hand Files, “Personally, I have a lot of time for Narcotics Anonymous, but I do understand your resistance to the idea,” he said. “I was the same. In my heart I never really got it — never felt the same connection other people seemed to have. I always felt outside the idea, looking in. I could never fully commit.

“However, I think it would be fair to say if it weren’t for NA I probably wouldn’t have survived my heroin addiction. Narcotics Anonymous was this thing, steady and ever-present, that just never ever went away, a place I could come crawling back to, again and again, year after year, and be accepted and welcomed, welcomed back in. In this respect, I owe Narcotics Anonymous my life. When no one else would have me, Narcotics Anonymous always would,” Cave added.

He went on: “The basis of Narcotics Anonymous, the Twelve Steps, a series of suggestions as to how to live a life — the original ‘antidote to chaos’ — seems to me to be an extraordinarily effective way to navigate the world, for all people, addicts or otherwise. Having said that, I do not follow The Twelve Steps myself, to my detriment I would say. Doubtless, I would be a better person if I did.”

Cave then heartfully concluded: “In the end, you find your own way. Ultimately I found mine outside of NA, with my wife, but it took Narcotics Anonymous to show me the way. Reading your letter again, Evan, my advice to you — and to me — go to a fucking meeting.”

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