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Lucy Hale: The “Pretty Little Liars” star speaks for the first time about her decision to live without alcohol

Pretty Little Liars actress Lucy Hale opens up about her experiences with alcoholism in the hope of encouraging others.

Actress Lucy Hale ("Pretty Little Liars") is opening up about her struggle with alcohol for the first time in the hope of helping other young people. The "Pretty Little Liars" star spoke candidly about her lengthy experience with addiction on the podcast "The Diary of a CEO" on 23 February 2023 – and also that her journey has been ongoing for 13 years. 

Lucy Hale, star of "Pretty Little Liars", talks about her experience of living with and without alcohol 

In the podcast with host Steven Barlett, Lucy Hale spoke about her long struggle with alcohol. "I've never talked publicly about being sober – I've only been living without alcohol for a little over a year. I've been working on getting sober since I was 20. Now I'm 33, it's taken time and a lot of patience with myself," the "Pretty Little Liars" star explains.

"I just held on to the belief that the real Lucy only comes out when she drinks. The alcohol also calmed my head… My brain just won't shut off, and that's exhausting. I was a real textbook alcoholic: I had black-outs and couldn't remember what I did or said – which is scary." 

Lucy Hale went on to reveal that she knew she had a problem with alcohol from her first attempt at drinking at the age of 14 – at no point in her life was she a "normal, moderate drinker". The actress explained, "I was ready to go to that crazy dark place every time. Of course, I tried to drink alcohol moderately, only have two drinks on a night out." Now she has to deal with it differently:

"I have an allergy to alcohol now. I can't drink. I consider it an allergy. My brain doesn't work the same way as someone who can only drink one glass of wine. It always wants more. It craves that feeling."

"Pretty Little Liars" star Lucy Hale on what it feels like to finally be alcohol-free

The podcast's host, Steven Bartlett, then asked if anyone in her life had ever given her an ultimatum or tried to stage an intervention because of her behaviour around alcohol. However, that too went nowhere for Lucy Hale. "I've tried to change for my boyfriend, I've tried to change for my mother, I've tried to change for my career, I've tried to change for vain reasons. I told myself I would look younger and thinner. One of my best friends died from alcoholism, but that didn't make me get sober," Lucy Hale explains. She goes on to say that alcohol itself is not the problem:

"The problem is this feeling inside me." 

It was only when Lucy Hale made the decision to get sober that everything began to change. She explained that she decided to do so on 2 January 2022 after realising that she "deserved more from this life". The actress added that the last year had felt "liberating" and "peaceful" after almost two decades of heavy drinking.

The week of Valentine's Day, Lucy Hale celebrated her one-year anniversary without alcohol on Instagram with a cake, writing in the caption,

"Bear with me, this is an alternative Valentine's Day post. This is a post about self love and the greatest thing I've ever done. On 2 January 2023, I celebrated one year without alcohol."

She added at the end, "Although this journey has been mostly private, I felt moved tonight to let everyone who is struggling know they are not alone and are loved." Under the post, she received encouragement from all quarters, including fellow actresses Demi Lovato, Shay Mitchell and Lily Collins


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