Jon Bon Jovi on his daughter’s heroin overdose: “I’m shocked… had no idea”

This news is a couple of days old but it’s new to me and I wanted to talk about it. Jon Bon Jovi did a recent interview to promote his upcoming Hurricane Sandy benefit at Madison Square Garden, on 12-12-12. Also performing will be Coldplay, Eric Clapton, Bruce Springteen & The E Street Band, Kanye West and Paul McCartney, among others. It’s going to be broadcast around the world and online so chances are high you’ll be able to see live it where you are! (Here’s a link to ticket information if you’d like to be there.) Anyway I was excited to learn about that concert. Bon Jovi has a particular connection to Sandy as he’s from New Jersey, which was heavily affected by the storm. (As is Bruce Springsteen of course.) He has strong roots in his community and has given back quite a bit, including founding a community restaurant in Red Bank, NJ, where patrons pay what they can afford. As part of his interview, Bon Jovi was asked about his 19 year-old daughter, Stephanie Rose’s, recent heroin overdose at her college in upstate New York. He was very candid about it, and said he had no idea and felt kind of powerless as a parent. That’s what I got out of his comments, that he’s tried his best and really was blindsided by his daughter’s OD. Here’s more:

AP: With your daughter recently in the news, how do you go forward from there?

Bon Jovi: I didn’t have any sisters. We bring home this girl the first day. Now what? Where’s the manual? There was no manual. So you bring her up the best you can, you surround her with hugs and kisses and know that she may eventually fall down. I appreciate the outpouring of kindness in light of what happened in my household. I’m shocked as much as the next parent with this situation and had no idea. But then you surround them with best help and love and move on, and that’s where we’re at with it. Steph is a great kid. Great GPA. Cool school, Hamilton College up in Clinton, N.Y. Everything about it is idyllic. She was doing great. Then a sudden and steep decline. Hopefully, we caught it when we did and that’s the end of it. But who knew? I’ve got three more to come.

AP: Sometimes kids just make bad decisions?

Bon Jovi: I hope so. I’m confident, but no one knows the future. It is what it is.

[From Huffington Post]

I feel for him, I do. There seems to be a lot of pain and honesty behind his comments. I can’t imagine having a child addicted to drugs and having to go through that, but as he said hopefully they caught it. You never know what kids are up to in college I guess. (*shudder at the thought*)

Photo credit: WENN and PRPhotos

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50 Responses to “Jon Bon Jovi on his daughter’s heroin overdose: “I’m shocked… had no idea””

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  1. Happymom says:

    I do really feel for them-but I find it hard to believe that she wasn’t partying prior to leaving for college. Because do you go from nothing to od-ing on heroin in November of your freshman year? Scary stuff.

    • km says:

      Maybe not straigt to heroin, but sure plenty of people go off the deep end when they get that amount of freedom…very quickly. Worst part is, you know better, but eh whatever. It happens and I’ve seen it.

    • katherine k says:

      Agreed. She was only in college for 2 or 3 months. People can go nuts with booze, sex, pot, or E, but it’s a stretch to think she suddenly ODed on heroin.

      She has a rockstar dad and tons of money. In her place, I’d probably indulge more than I did.

    • stellalovejoydiver says:

      Maybe she was partying, he just said that he didn´t have any idea and that it was a shock. I think he may have just ignored the signs, she is little girl.

    • mmf says:

      Yes, from nothing to Heroin highly possible. My son and quite a few of his friends were offered everything under the sun. In their freshman year at school. They were all good kids. No drug history. Now half of them have issues with drugs/alcohol. Some have left school. Heroin is huge again and is killing our young adults and an alarming rate.

    • Lishka says:

      Well, I went to university and on the first day I smoked weed for the first time. By the end of the first month there I was smoking a lot of it, drinking almost daily and before you know it I had taken LSD as well. By the end of the first semester there I am pretty sure I had taken E as well. Its not a stretch to think she got in with the wrong “suggestors” who gave her heroin instead of gateway drugs like weed. And its frikken EASY to OD on heroin if you have never done much of it before.

  2. aims says:

    I like jon. He was open and honest. Theres a lot of parents who have gone through this. It just shows you, good family, all the money and opportunity you could ask for and still have things can fall apart.

  3. Natalie says:

    Bon Jovi’s restaurant is in Red Bank, NJ.

    • KellyinSeattle says:

      I met him when I lived there. He was NICE; smiling and talking to people…seemed very down to earth and even sweet. Sometimes kids, when they leave home, go crazy with the partying. She’s a lovely young woman (looks like her dad) – and I wish their whole family the best.

      • Annie says:

        Heroin is not a party drug though. People need to get this. This isn’t coke or E. It’s heavy stuff. You don’t go from nothing to ODing on heroin for being a crazy college girl. Homeless people do heroin, I mean it’s a HARD drug. She’s been doing it for a while and not to have fun. It’s a legit serious addiction. So if they’re trying to paint it as “oops! College.” Nope, not happening. Your daughter has a problem and you just found out.

      • mimifarrow says:

        @Annie: I disagree with you. Heroin *used* to be considered a “hard” drug but it is so prevalent in small communities now, that I do think with the younger generation it is considered a party drug. I am from an affluent small island town and kids are literally taking Oxy or heroin for their first drug experiences, and getting addicted before they even know what hit them. They may not be shooting up, but they are definitely using and Od’ing within a very short time frame, without their parents having a clue.

      • M says:

        @mimifarrow Yep, heroin is (or at least was a few years ago) pretty popular among affluent high schoolers. Apparently it’s not not expensive. Several wealthy kids have died from heroin ODs in Bergen County, NJ.

      • Annie says:

        What I mean is that it’s not a drug happy people take. I understand curiosity with coke and E, but only really self-destructive people go for the heroin. I would be upset if my children did E, coke, mushrooms, but if they did heroin? I would be WORRIED sh*tless.

  4. RocketMerry says:

    Well, I do hope they caught it in time and that will be the end of it. He seems very concerned and scared, so… positive thoughts for him, I wish all the best.

  5. Lucinda says:

    As a parent I feel for him. You do the best you can and hope it’s enough.

  6. RN says:

    I live close to Reed College in Portland and this sadly happens just about every year. It seems to be the norm now in these wealthy schools where there’s often more money than common sense. I don’t believe necessarily that his daughter had to be partying much in high school before overdosing on heroin in college.

  7. Sam says:

    I feel bad for him. I admit that when I first read this, I sorta didn’t believe it. It’s pretty rare to see a young person, a well-off young person, choosing heroin as their first drug of choice. Most heroin users start out on different drugs – like prescription pills and then go to heroin when they need a stronger high. Besides, I think now most people know that heroin is scary, hardcore stuff. It’s not like pot. Most heroin users only start it when they’ve run out of the other stuff.

    I’m not saying its not possible that this girl made a stupid decision once or twice. I’m just saying that if she did, she’d be pretty rare in the drug world. It would be more likely that she had, in the past, tried other, lesser opiods and maybe a friend convinced her to try something stronger.

    • Jayna says:

      It is rare, but not unheard of. They did a huge four-part story on heroin use being a huge problem and big amongst the young college age people. I was kind of shocked. They said it’s so addictive. And the stories of many students weren’t unlike her. One young girl had really never done drugs. And she was visiting friends at an apartment and they talked her into trying heroin. She overdosed and died. They said she had never done drugs and was afraid to try it. But I was really stunned to read how huge it was in late teens and early twenties and how once it gets hold of you it destroys you. I didn’t realize it was so addictive so quickly.

  8. goodquestion says:

    How nice to see a rock star or famous actor with his age appropriate wife, and a young woman who actually is his daughter – rather than a girlfriend who just looks like she could be.

  9. Leah says:

    Even if he knew, it’s not like he’s going to tell the world is he?

  10. TheOriginalKitten says:

    I believe him.

    Yeah, so she might have been doing softer stuff like LSD and prescrip pills in highschool or college. I had my fun in college and no, my parents never knew. Never touched heroin and never would but I could see how she could get there. It really doesn’t take long for heroin addiction to consume a person, it’s probably the easiest drug to get addicted to and fast.

    If she wasn’t in constant contact with her parents, this would be very very easy to hide.

  11. Talie says:

    It is scary because you don’t know if she has larger addiction issues and that this might be a lifelong struggle.

  12. khalesi says:

    Poor girl and her family. I have only sympathy for them during this difficult time. My younger sister also became addicted to heroin during college — she’s bright, went to a great school, was surrounded by friends and family and still managed to succumb to addiction. It’s been 4 years since we first found out (she OD’d) and it’s been a struggle. Some days are better than others and she’s relapsed several times (and been through a number of rehab programs).

  13. Cody says:

    My son is in college and attends a small private liberal arts college in the Northeast. He picked that school because he got a great scholarship. So it isn’t just rich kids that attend these schools. I live in the mid west and it really is out of sight and out of mind sort of thing. Parents really don’t know what goes on. We recently got a letter from the President of the school telling the parents that there is just too much partying going on, especially for this time of year and what they and parents can do about it. I already skype my son once a week, but you never know and these things just aren’t discussed. So I understand where Bon Jovi is coming from.

    • Chatcat says:

      Agree with you and I know where Jon is coming from as well. Good kids, hell good people, make bad choices all the time. I have 1 finished college, 1 a Jr in college, and my last heading to college next year. Life offers no guarantees and as parents never say never. You do your best, you hope it’s enough, and then you love them unconditionally and do tough love if they fall hard and fast.

  14. Nikki says:

    2 months is plenty of time to get into hard drugs and badly. Just hope she takes this as a sign to get better.

  15. Sway says:

    His attitude and especially “and that’s the end of it” part…is not so great, in my opinion. I mean, it’s not the end of it. She’s got a looong road ahead of her, she will struggle, she may relapse, she may fall down and get up again a number of times. He should be prepared and always on her side… no matter what.
    Wish them all the best.

  16. lucy2 says:

    Best wishes to her and their whole family. I too would imagine she was into something before this, but whatever the case, I hope they are able to get her back on the right path.

    Glad they’re doing a benefit, that’s great. My area is cleaning up and looks better, but there’s still a lot to do, and north of here was even worse.

  17. RobN says:

    I wish her nothing but good health, but I’m not buying the “we didn’t know” thing from him at all. Lots of sites reporting that she was suspended from high school on at least two occasions for bringing drugs on campus and several old friends/acquaintances have confirmed it. If true, how is this a surprise? If I were him, I wouldn’t comment on my kid at all, but if you’re going to, then keep it honest.

    • Annie says:

      No surprise here; they’re in denial and embarrassed, like all the parents of addicts are. They know her and they’re afraid this makes them look bad. It’s just an awful situation but I don’t know how saying “we had no idea” it’s a good thing.

  18. Agnes says:

    I wish her and the family the best. It must be heart-breaking for a parent.

    And kudos to Jon etc on the concert!

  19. kel says:

    Everyone it doesn’t matter how she got there the focus should be wishing them well to get through these next few months which are gonna be hard. And it is possible to use heroin as a first, people up here put it with marijuana and other drugs so she may not have thought about it. And the high was different and she liked it and wanted more..The point is no one really knows and its not our job to judge. We just need to give them strength and confidence to beat this …….

  20. kel says:

    Everyone it doesn’t matter how she got there the focus should be wishing them well to get through these next few months which are gonna be hard. And it is possible to use heroin as a first, people up here put it with pot and other drugs so she may not have thought about it. And the high was different and she liked it and wanted more..The point is no one really knows and its not our job to judge. We just need to give them strength and confidence to beat this …….

  21. kel says:

    Everyone it doesn’t matter how she got there the focus should be wishing them well to get through these next few months which are gonna be hard. And it is possible to use heroin as a first, people up here put it with pot and other drugs so she may not have thought about it. And the high was different and she liked it and wanted more. The point is no one really knows and its not our job to judge. We just need to give them strength and confidence to beat this …….

  22. JustaGirl says:

    I feel for them, and other families, going through this. My two boys are at preteen ages, and their teenage/young adult years are already terrifying me without even being there yet.

  23. Happy21 says:

    I do believe she could have partied unnoticed prior to college.

    I was doing coke in the bathroom at school in Grade 9; I was smoking it at parties occasionally on weekends; I was smoking weed; I was dropping acid AND driking by Grade 10. My parents weren’t idiots and they tell me now that they knew I smoked some pot and occasionally came home tipsy. The rest. They have no idea and I hope to never tell them.

    Pretty much by Grade 11 it was all (except drinking) out of my system. Some kids weren’t so lucky. Drugs, prostitution, death. A few never made it to 25.

    My point is that she could have been partying well before this. She could have kept her grades up (I did) and not been addicted (hell, just because she od’d doesn’t even mean she was addicted). When I was in college two older guys (in thier late 20s) decided that they would try heroin one weekend (not too sure why the hell they would decide that!). Both died. They had no idea what or how much they were taking.

    God, just typing all of this really makes me shake my freaking head…

  24. kj says:

    I haven’t been following this one at all, but it is absolutely possible to OD on heroin very quickly. Heck could have been the first time she took it, happened to a friend of mine years ago. Hard drugs are everywhere and you don’t have to shoot up or be homeless to be hooked on heroin. Heroin/Opium was the drug of choice for housewives in the early part of the 20th century. I hope she got her wake up call and it won’t be a long term issue.

    I went from being totally straightlaced to a huge pothead/drinker in college, because it was easy to get, it was there and I was on my own and making bad decisions for the first time. Luckily I saw Sid and Nancy several times so I was afraid of heroin. :)

  25. Jen34 says:

    His response was honest. He is living a parent’s worst nightmare. I wish him and his beautiful family well. Heroine is no joke.

  26. Justaposter says:

    Under the best of circumstance being a parent is scary.

    I wish them all well.

  27. Twez says:

    We see a huge amount of high school aged kids messing with prescription opiates in my area. The next logical step when you can’t get roxies is to try a little bump of H. Since they aren’t experienced heroin users, they can OD easily.