At one time fashion designer John Galliano was one of the world’s most famous and successful designers. The star designer at mega-fashion house Christian Dior, celebrities regularly wore his fashions, and he had also achieved respect and prominence in the cut-throat world of high-fashion.
Father Was A Plumber
Born the son of a plumber, British-born John Galliano reached the top of the fashion world, only to have it crumble before his eyes. The end began, when the media reported an altercation he had where he ranted at a couple, using anti-Semitic terms, in a Parisian bar.
He was outed as a closet racist and was blacklisted from the fashion and celebrity world that he had once inhabited. He now claims that he wasn’t racist, but the tirade was a result of his struggles with substance abuse.
When the incident first happened in March 2011, Galliano kept quiet, even when Natalie Portman spoke out against him. Portman, who is Jewish, denounced his statements as racist, and pointed out that anti-Semitism still strongly exists.
However, recently, John Galliano finally decided to speak about the ugly cloud that has surrounded him. He has since been fired from Christian Dior, been fined for inciting racial hatred, and celebrities no longer flock to wear his striking and innovative fashion designs.
John Galliano has appeared on the Charlie Rose show to speak about his side of the story, opening up about his problems with alcoholism, and how that has colored his seemingly blessed life.
Galliano admits that he suffered from alcohol addiction and dependence on prescription pills. He said that his reliance grew over time, and that he no longer could control it, and his addiction ruled over everything in his life.
He said that he started hearing voices, and was always reaching for glasses of wine or other forms of hard liquor. He would disappear for days on alcohol binges and would cease to take care of himself. The famous style icon was reduced to being filthy and covered in sores, because he no longer cared enough to groom himself.
Curiously enough, while John Galliano seems to come completely clean about his addiction issues, he still doesn’t come completely clean about his racism. While he says that he deeply regrets the statements that he made about Jews, he says he’s still trying to figure out where the anger comes from.
However, he said that he has tried his best to make amends with Jews, by meeting with Jewish leaders and apologizing. He said that he’s now been sober for two years, and is in a much better place in his life.
His recovery has been helped a long by loyal friends, such as fellow fashion designers Patricia Fields and Oscar de la Renta. Patricia Fields went to bat for John Galliano immediately when the scandal first happened.
And Oscar de la Renta gave John Galliano work, after he was first fired from Christian Dior. So it appears that John Galliano has come a long way in achieving sobriety, and may even be able to rebuild his tarnished reputation.
Ken Seeley is an expert on alcohol and drug addiciton from his time spent on A&E’s Intervention, to learn more about services provided by an interventionist go to their website. Connect with Ken Seeley by joining his .