Belfast Telegraph

Deryck Whibley: I'm still recovering

Deryck Whibley turned to alcohol to help him fake the energy he needed for the stage.

The Sum 41 rocker was rushed to a clinic in April 2014 after he fell down in his kitchen and it was found that years of alcohol abuse had caused his liver and kidneys to shut down.

He was sedated and put into a coma for a week to give his body a chance to recover, eventually being released a month later. He is still getting better though, explaining it has been a much longer process than he expected.

"I still have trouble with my walking, because being in the hospital for that long, everything just depleted. My muscles, everything. I couldn’t walk for the longest time, and I’m still re-training myself to walk normally. The doctors say it’s been going quickly, but it feels pretty slow to me," he told

Sum 41 released their debut record All Killer, No Filler in 2001 and Deryck fully embraced the rock and roll lifestyle. That meant he was drinking all the time, especially as the group were one of the most hard touring around.

“Partying like that becomes the norm, that’s all you know and you don’t see any way around it," he explained.

"It’s a lot of stress, it’s a tough lifestyle. It’s hard to go at that pace without using something to cope. I drank to wake me up and get that fake energy. There were a lot of times I didn’t even want to drink, but I was so tired that shots of Jack [Daniels] were all I could do to get onstage.”

The band hit the road for three years to promote 2011 record Screaming Bloody Murder, which is when things became really problematic. Afterwards the musician realised he needed a break, but instead of trying to ease back into normality he partied for a year straight.

The 35-year-old began drinking to ease his hangovers, which is when he was hospitalised. When he woke from his coma he was told how lucky he was to be alive and warned that death was still a possibility, which shocked him because he felt so much better.

Now he is happy to be sober and has no drive to drink again. He's cleaned up other areas of his life too, with his social circle drastically reduced.

Deryck isn't one to focus on the negatives and feels his brush with death came at the right time, as had his drinking gone on too long he doesn't think his body would have coped.

He is even considering taking to the stage again, although the idea makes him nervous too.

"I have slight fears. Not really drinking fears, but I hope my balance for my legs is going to be fine. I just don’t want to fall over. But I have no idea yet, really. I don’t know what it’ll be like," he said.

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