STORY ANGLE: The heartbreaking case of Amy Winehouse illustrates the devastating power of addiction and that even fame, fortune and global applause are inadequate to combat this fatal disease. It is shocking that, with her sophistication and financial resources, she only made short, episodic attempts (30-day treatment) at treating and arresting this chronic disease. This ineffective approach to treatment, coupled with her resistance to change and the constellation of enablers around her are the prime reasons why she never achieved lasting sobriety.
EXPERT SOURCE: Ben Levenson, Origins Recover Centers' CEO and a former addict explains, "Watching Amy Winehouse's downward spiral progress publicly was a tragic, yet informative example of the grave cycle of addiction. Here is a Grammy Award-winning artist with every logical reason in the world to stay sober, but was unable to do so. I am pleased that her father is sharing his perspective through a memoir, however, it is evident that he still seeks to blame her external circumstances (her ex-husband) for her addiction and death."
"Family members of addicts are deeply affected with co-dependency and the flawed beliefs that accompany it. Winehouse's death was preventable through competent, long-term inpatient treatment of her addiction and co-existing problems," states Levenson.
One lesson family members can take from Winehouse’s death is that true addiction will not self-correct. Society must evolve the way it thinks about treating this chronic illness – it generally cannot be treated with short inpatient stays. Effective treatment includes multiple phases of care over a period of one year to eighteen months that gradually decompresses an individual and allows time for the deep clinical and emotional work and vital brain healing to occur.