Sir Elton John reveals his husband David Furnish went into rehab for alcoholism after failing to cope with his partner's fame

  • Sir Elton John reveals David Furnish didn't like public speaking or press scrutiny
  • David Furnish checked into a rehab clinic in California due to his drink problem
  • The 72-year-old star married Furnish in 2014 when gay marriage became legal 

David Furnish, pictured right with Sir Elton,  took to drink after struggling to live in the public eye and suffering loneliness because Sir Elton was away on tour so much

David Furnish, pictured right with Sir Elton,  took to drink after struggling to live in the public eye and suffering loneliness because Sir Elton was away on tour so much

Sir Elton John’s husband ended up in rehab with a serious alcohol problem because he could not cope with his partner’s worldwide fame, the star has revealed.

David Furnish took to drink after struggling to live in the public eye and suffering loneliness because Sir Elton was away on tour so much.

Realising the extent of his drink problem, Mr Furnish, 56, checked into a clinic in Malibu, California.

In his racy new autobiography, Me, Sir Elton writes: ‘I always thought David had slipped into Elton John World with remarkable ease and confidence, but it turned out that a lot of things I was completely used to living with, that I just saw as a fact of life, made him completely anxious.

‘He didn’t like being photographed all the time, or being under press scrutiny, or public speaking at [Elton John] AIDS Foundation events.’

The 72-year-old star, who entered into a civil partnership with Mr Furnish in 2005 and married him in 2014 when gay marriage became legal, said his husband’s drink demons became apparent when he found empty wine bottles scattered throughout the homes they shared around the world.

On one occasion, Sir Elton discovered Mr Furnish passed out in front of his computer.

Realising the extent of his drink problem, Mr Furnish, 56, checked into a clinic in Malibu, California. Mr Furnish is pictured with Sir Elton and their children Elijah Furnish-John and Zachary Furnish-John

Realising the extent of his drink problem, Mr Furnish, 56, checked into a clinic in Malibu, California. Mr Furnish is pictured with Sir Elton and their children Elijah Furnish-John and Zachary Furnish-John

Four years after the couple adopted their sons Elijah and Zachary, the boozing had become so severe that Sir Elton feared they would split up.

‘It all came to a head in Los Angeles in 2014, two days before I was due to start a US tour… David was feeling low and wanted me to stay the extra night with him. I said no. We had a huge row, I went anyway,’ Sir Elton writes.

‘The next morning, David called and we had a row that made the previous day’s row look like a light-hearted disagreement over what to have for lunch: the kind of argument where you come off the phone teary and reeling, where things are said that make you wonder whether the next time you communicate it’ll be through lawyers.

‘In fact, the next time I heard from David, he had checked himself into a rehab clinic in Malibu. I was pleased he was getting treatment.’

When Mr Furnish left rehab, Sir Elton – who has endured his own well-publicised battle with drink and drugs – joined him at his Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

Born in Canada, Mr Furnish met Sir Elton in 1993 – three years after the star had given up alcohol. 

Four years later, the advertising executive and film-maker directed Elton John: Tantrums & Tiaras, a TV documentary about his then boyfriend that was nominated for a Bafta award.

In his racy new autobiography, Me, Sir Elton writes: ‘I always thought David had slipped into Elton John World with remarkable ease and confidence, but it turned out that a lot of things I was completely used to living with, that I just saw as a fact of life, made him completely anxious'. Sir Elton is pictured above at the premiere of the film he co-produced, Rocketman

 In his racy new autobiography, Me, Sir Elton writes: ‘I always thought David had slipped into Elton John World with remarkable ease and confidence, but it turned out that a lot of things I was completely used to living with, that I just saw as a fact of life, made him completely anxious'. Sir Elton is pictured above at the premiere of the film he co-produced, Rocketman

He also co-produced Rocketman, the hit biographical musical film based on Sir Elton’s life which was released earlier this year.

Recalling his own once-rampant addiction to cocaine, Sir Elton writes in the book: ‘My appetite for the stuff was unbelievable – enough to attract comment in the circles I was moving in. Given that I was a rock star spending a lot of time in Seventies Los Angeles, this was a not inconsiderable feat.

‘Because I was doing coke, I wasn’t a rational human being any more. You become unreasonable and irresponsible, self-obsessed, a law unto yourself.’

Sir Elton John reveals his husband David Furnish went into rehab for alcoholism

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