Stevie Nicks Confronted Her ‘Jerk’ Doctor After a Scary Baby Shower Fall

After years of escalating cocaine usage, Stevie Nicks was happy to no longer use the drug. Not long after, though, a doctor prescribed her a medication that made her feel sluggish and creatively sapped. She used this medication for several years until a frightening moment at a baby shower convinced her to confront her doctor.

Stevie Nicks wears a black lace top and holds a microphone.
Stevie Nicks | Gie Knaeps/Getty Images

Stevie Nicks’ doctor prescribed her tranquilizers

When Nicks left a rehab facility, she was confident that she would no longer use cocaine. Those around her didn’t believe her, though, and encouraged her to visit a doctor. He prescribed the tranquilizer Klonopin to help her sleep and avoid using cocaine again. Gradually, he ramped up her dosage, and Nicks began feeling disoriented and sick. 

Her lethargy sapped her creative energy, and she was frustrated that she couldn’t write at the same level as before. She’d asked her doctor to lower her dosage, but he refused.

She had a frightening moment while hosting a baby shower

After eight years of taking Klonopin, Nicks hosted a friend’s baby shower in her home. She was constantly cold and shaky, so she had to stand near the blazing fire. She was sipping a glass of wine when she suddenly collapsed.

“I was hosting a baby shower in my old house,” she said, per the book Gold Dust Woman: The Biography of Stevie Nicks by Stephen Davis. “We had a bottle of Lafite Rothschild, some incredible vintage, and there were probably fifteen of us there. Everybody had a little sip. And that’s all I remember. I must’ve collapsed.”

Her friends found her lying on the floor.

“The girls said they found me on the carpet, curled up by the fireplace,” she explained. “I’d hit my head, but felt no pain. They got me up to bed. Later I looked at myself in the bathroom mirror and saw I had some blood on the side of my head. I never injure myself, so I was horrified to see that blood. I hadn’t had enough wine to pass out like that. I knew it was the Klonopin.”

After this realization, Nicks had her assistant try her Klonopin dosage. When it caused him to hallucinate, she confronted her doctor.

“I told him I was going into rehab and he said, ‘No, I can cut your dose way down.’ But I had made my mind up,” she said. “I felt like this jerk had taken away eight years of my life.”

Nicks spent 47 days at the Daniel Freeman Memorial Hospital and has not touched Klonopin since.

Stevie Nicks doesn’t think she’ll ever forgive her doctor

Nicks deeply regrets this period of her life because she feels as though she lost the last years of her youth.

“Think of what could have happened during those eight years,” she told The New York Times. “I might have gotten married, I might have had a baby, I certainly would have made more albums.”

Because of this, Nicks said it’s nearly impossible for her to let go of the anger she feels toward her former doctor.

“If I was driving a car and he was crossing the street I might run over him,” she said.

Still, she tries to work through her anger.

“If I’ve learned nothing else it’s that time passes and anger doesn’t do you much good,” she said. “Something that seems really bad today is going to be better next week. And things you think are never going to go away soften with time. When things happen that upset me I try to do something that makes me happy.

How to get help: In the U.S., contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration helpline at 1-800-662-4357.

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