Comedian Patton Oswalt credits daughter for saving him from alcohol addiction after wife’s death
Sober Tales Sep 01, 2017
Comedian Patton Oswalt credits daughter for saving him from alcohol addiction after wife’s death

Famous for his roles in “The King of Queens” and “Ratatouille”, American stand-up comedian Patton Oswalt, in a recent interview with the Playboy magazine credited his eight-year-old daughter, Alice for saving his life. After his wife of 11 years, Michelle McNamara, passed away on April 2016, from an undiagnosed heart condition coupled with a combination of drugs, overwhelming grief and depression drove him to abuse alcohol.

Oswalt said that if it was not for his daughter, he would not have made it through. “I’m forever glad that I have Alice. If I hadn’t had a daughter and my wife died, we wouldn’t be talking right now. I’m not saying I would be dead, but I would be a shut-in alcoholic,” he said.

Oswalt admitted that though the unbearable loss of his wife would have led him astray, his duties as a father compelled him to stand firm despite the pain. In fact, fatherhood helped him face the challenges of each new day. “There have been nights when I’ve had maybe one scotch with some friends. I’ll say, that’s it. I’ve got to take her to school tomorrow,” he cited an example.

Oswalt is slowly taking control of his life again. He is now engaged to another actress, Meredith Salenger, and is looking forward to his upcoming projects.

Alcohol use disorder is a reality in America

Alcohol abuse can have a detrimental effect on all aspects of an individual’s life and well-being, including his or her friends, colleagues, family and community, placing an immense burden on the society. “About 16.6 million adults and almost 700,000 adolescents in the United States have an alcohol use disorder (AUD),” reports the National Institutes of Health (NIH). But, unfortunately, less than 8 percent of them ever seek the much-needed professional treatment, which is why it has become the third leading preventable cause of death nationwide.

Symptoms that indicate AUD

  • Drinking large amounts on a regular basis over a longer period of time.
  • Failing repeatedly while trying to control the urge to drink.
  • Investing a great deal of time and effort to procure alcohol to satisfy one’s cravings.
  • Experiencing constant cravings to drink at all times.
  • Unable to discharge personal and professional duties.
  • Drinking despite facing alcohol-related interpersonal or social issues.
  • Neglecting important daily life activities due to drinking.
  • Engaging in high-risk drinking behaviors, such as binge drinking, which may be hazardous.
  • Drinking despite undergoing psychological issues which can get worse due to alcohol.
  • Developing a steadily higher level of tolerance while drinking.

Addiction to alcohol can be treated

There are millions in the United States alone, who are trapped in the clutches of this socially accepted drug without knowing that it can make them vulnerable to serious health problems, issues related to intoxicated behavior, and alcohol withdrawal symptoms. The truth remains, it is an illness which affects everyone alike. Life for an individual affected by AUD is a constant search for the next drink. Therefore, understanding the health hazards and the warnings signs of alcoholism could go a long way in reducing the risk of the damage.

Hooked Sober is a source of information about drugs, alcohol, eating disorders and mental disorders. Please send your questions, concerns or comments to or speak to a representative at 866-838-4087.

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