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    The Weeknd Said He's "Sober Lite" After Realizing That He Doesn't "Need" To Use Hard Drugs, And I'm Happy For Him

    "Drugs were a crutch. It was me thinking that I needed it."

    The Weeknd has talked about his substance use a few times over the years.

    The Weeknd accepts an award onstage at the 2021 iHeartRadio Music Awards

    Back in 2015, the singer, whose given name is Abel Tesfaye, spoke briefly about addiction in a Rolling Stone interview.

    The Weeknd holds up peace signs on stage at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards

    "I never needed detox or anything. But I was addicted in the sense of 'Fuck, I don't want to spend this day without getting high,'" he said at the time, and later told The Guardian that he'd relied on certain substances as "a crutch" in the past.

    The Weeknd is photographed smiling inside a convertible

    During the earlier part of 2020, the musician described his relationship with drugs as "off-and-on" in an interview with CR Men's Issue 10. He said using them wasn't all-consuming for him, and, in fact, sometimes assisted his creative process.

    The Weeknd is photographed while performing at the Super Bowl LV Halftime Show in 2021

    Now, as he prepares to launch new music — The Weeknd teased an upcoming track, "The Dawn Is Coming," on Instagram this morning — he opened up again about alcohol and drug consumption in an interview with GQ.

    The Weeknd poses on the cover of GQ for its September issue

    "I like sober lite," he said in the interview, describing his current habits and noting that while he drinks and smokes occasionally, hard drugs are no longer part of his lifestyle.

    The Weeknd accepts an award onstage at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards

    "I'm not a heavy drinker, as much as I used to be. The romance of drinking isn't there," he explained. "Drugs were a crutch. It was me thinking that I needed it. And not doing the work to figure out how not to need it."

    "I've spent the last few years realizing that and thanking God that I don't need it. Because for a lot of people, it's hard to shake it," the artist continued. "But I knew I didn't want it."

    The Weeknd poses backstage at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards

    Although he didn't speak at length about the factors that motivated his lifestyle changes, it sounded like The Weeknd's desire to someday have children at least partly inspired the shift.

    You can read his full GQ interview here.

    If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction, check out the resources available on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website or talk to a representative on their free, confidential, 24/7 national helpline by calling 1-800-662-HELP. You can also find general information about mental health and helpful resources at the National Institute of Mental Health website.