Graham Norton opens up about alcohol use and his one glass rule

Graham Norton opens up about alcohol use and his one glass rule

Graham Norton used alcohol to help him "fit in".

The 51-year-old talk show host has admitted that he began drinking a lot of alcohol whilst he was studying drama at university, which triggered a life-long "love affair with the bottle".

The BBC presenter revealed how Carrie Fisher, famous for her role as Princess Leia in Star Wars, convinced him to go to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

But Norton decided not to abstain from booze, regularly opting for one glass of wine on his Friday night show because he felt “in control”.

An excerpt from this week's show with John Cleese and Taylor Swift.

In an excerpt from his book, The Life And Loves Of A He Devil and serialised in the Daily Mail, the Eurovision Song Contest host wrote: “I have actually been to a few meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous thanks to my friend Carrie Fisher, she of Princess Leia fame.

“Her problems with addiction are well documented and she persuaded me to accompany her to an AA session in Los Angeles. Initially, I was reluctant because I feared I would realise I was the same as these people who told nostalgic stories about their crazy nights and how long they had been dragged by alcohol.

“I realised at those AA meetings that, although we did share some of the same stories, I had reached a very different ending from the others. I prefer my life with booze in it, but the members I met didn’t have that choice to make. They couldn’t live if drink remained in them.

“The big question is: do I have a problem? On one level, I obviously do because I drink far too much. But on the other hand, my rationale would be: Where’s the harm?”

Talking in the Daily Mail newspaper, Graham shared: "Drugs have, of course, crossed my path from time to time, but for me it has always been about the bottle.

"It helped me to fit in. Even now when I walk into some showbiz bash, I feel a rush of teenage fear and insecurity. Where's the waiter with the tray? Find him and then let the small talk begin!"

Hugh Grant tells Norton about his first Hollywood audition in early October.

Referring to the time that he moved to a hippie commune in Los Angeles after he dropped out of university, he explained that he thought he became "very good" at covering up his drinking, despite waking up with "dried vomit" down his face.

He said: "I became very good at disguising my drinking and hangovers - or so I thought."

However, the 'Graham Norton Show' presenter did note that his drinking was now mostly under control and he doesn't let it interfere with his work on the BBC show.

He told the newspaper: "More than 30 years later, I still allow myself only one glass of wine on my chat show.

"Most weeks it never comes close to being finished and even back in the early Nineties, when I had drifted into stand-up comedy, doing the rounds in the pubs and clubs, I kept to the one-glass rule."

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