Ronnie Wood's sobriety struggle


Ronnie Wood was branded a "weakling" by Keith Richards when he attempted to get sober.

The Rolling Stones guitarist quit drugs and alcohol almost 10 years ago but made a number of attempts to ditch the habits before then, and while frontman Sir Mick Jagger offered him words of positivity and reassurance, Keith was more dismissive.

He said: "I do remember going on stage clean for the first time, it was at this club in Canada for the start of a tour (in August 2005).

"I was like this, ([terrified], and Mick whispered, 'It's alright, you can do it, don't worry.'

"And Keith's going, 'Rehab's for quitters!' Trying to make out I was the weakling.

"But it takes a lot of strength to do this if indeed I'm gonna be able to do it at all because there's no guarantees."

The 72-year-old musician finally got sober on his own efforts and suggested rehab facilities are keen to see people relapse or reach their depths as it's more profitable for them.

Recalling a 2009 intervention, he told MOJO magazine: "The penny kind of dropped shortly after that. They pulled the rug from under me, basically.

"They took my counsellor away and got me so annoyed. I was like, 'This is my final week. I need my counsellor. And they're, 'Get over it. The world doesn't revolve around you.'

"You sometimes wonder if they want you to go out and drink again... It's big money for them.

"Do they want you to fall off the wagon and com back and pay them another huge amount of money?

"So I left rehab and did it for myself I felt I knew what to do - Fellowship. I did 90 meetings in 90 days and I did the same again. Didn't need the rehab place - I did it through the meetings."

Asked if he thinks rehab is a racket, he added: "Oh yeah. They help people but they can also help people... commit suicide."