Like the rest of the internet, I spent the end of yesterday’s work day trying to figure out how Zac Efron managed to keep his trip to rehab a secret. As someone who professionally stalks celebrities for a living, I’ve learned that it’s incredibly hard for any famous person to keep this kind of information under the radar for that long. So I guess that’s why I shouldn’t be all that surprised that within hours of his team alluding to Zac going to rehab for an alcohol addiction, TMZ came out and claimed that it was actually cocaine. They had to get revenge somehow for being so out of the loop on this story.
While this allegation may or may not be true, it’s not really any of our business why he went. And yes, I know that typing that sentence in an article that’s titled “Zac Efron Reportedly Went to Rehab for Cocaine” makes me somewhat of a hypocrite. But my own hypocrisy aside, I’m thinking that when a celebrity voluntarily makes the decision to get better without being ordered to by a court, we should celebrate his decision by wishing him well — and not accusing him of trying to cover up a cocaine addiction. Yes, for those of you who haven’t been online for the past 12 hours, you should know that the general tone on the internet toward Zac right now is that he’s trying to deceive us with his addiction. Just look at this quote from the TMZ article titled, “Zac Efron Rehab for Big Cocaine Problem” and take note of the capitalized NOT.
Zac Efron did NOT go to rehab for alcohol abuse — it was far more serious, because multiple sources tell TMZ he had a serious cocaine addiction.
Here’s the thing about celebrity addiction though. We can’t it have it both ways. We can’t say “if only he’d gotten help sooner,” and then turn around and attempt to embarrass a celebrity for getting the help sooner. We can’t mourn the death of a celebrity for a serious addiction like heroin and then make another celebrity feel like he’s done something wrong by being addicted to a drug like cocaine — and not a more palatable drug like alcohol. And we most certainly can’t sit around and wax poetic about someone’s addiction struggle in retrospect when we’re making someone else’s struggle harder by turning it into the celebrity scandal of the week.
We don’t know why Zac Efron went to rehab and honestly we shouldn’t want to know. Regardless of whether it’s alcohol or cocaine or MDMA, it’s still an addiction and it’s still serious. His recovery — and really any celebrity’s recovery — isn’t dependent on us knowing the details, but on us making it clear that he did the right thing by going to rehab. Zac did what we always ask so many celebrities to do, he took the initiative to get help before it was too late. Instead of harassing his reps for comments on why exactly he went and making that the focus of his rehab story, let’s celebrate the fact that he’s here and that he’s trying to stay healthy.