Tom Holland Opens Up About Sobriety After Becoming 'Addicted' And 'Obsessed' With Alcohol

The Spider-Man star said he previously felt "enslaved" by drinking before going sober.
Tom Holland pictured during his interview on Jay Shetty's podcast
Tom Holland pictured during his interview on Jay Shetty's podcast
YouTube/Jay Shetty

Tom Holland has opened up about his decision to go sober after his struggle to quit drinking.

The Spider-Man star has now been sober for a year and a half, after deciding to take a month off alcohol in January 2022 following what he described as a particularly “boozy” festive season.

“I didn’t one day wake up and say, ‘I’m giving up drinking’,” he told Jay Shetty during an episode of the On Purpose podcast.

I just, like many Brits, had a very, very boozy December. [It was] Christmas time, I was on vacation, I was drinking a lot, and I’ve always been able to drink a lot.”

However, when January came around, the British actor found that “all I could think about was having a drink”, which “really scared him” and prompted him to consider whether he might actually have a problem with alcohol.

“I just was like, ‘Wow, maybe I have a little bit of an alcohol thing,’” he explained.

Following this, Tom decided to continue his sober streak into February, as a way of proving to himself that he didn’t have an issue, but found he “was still really struggling” and “started to really worry that maybe I had an alcohol problem”.

He then set himself the goal of going six months without drinking, a decision that led to him becoming “the happiest I’ve ever been in my life”.

Tom Holland at an event in India earlier this year
Tom Holland at an event in India earlier this year
Prodip Guha via Getty Images

“I could sleep better, I could handle problems better,” he continued. “Things that would go wrong on set, that would normally set me off, I could take in my stride. I had such better mental clarity. I felt healthier, I felt fitter.

“And I just sort of said to myself, like, ‘Why? Why am I enslaved to this drink? Why am I so obsessed by the idea of having this drink?’”

He added: “I’m happy to say it – I was definitely addicted to alcohol. I’m not shying away from that at all.”

During the same interview, Tom also reflected on his decision to quit social media – and criticised the press coverage that this prompted.

I was having a really hard time with the job just because of how taxing it was, the emotional capacity that I was having to get to every day,” he said.

“And I decided to delete my Instagram because I just felt like I was so addicted to this kind of false version of my life that it was just taking over.”

When he announced the news, the star said he tried to position it as a positive change, one that his “mental health will benefit from”, but found that the media suggested he was struggling instead.

“The thing that really upset me is the press ran with that and they tried to make out that I was having this mental breakdown,” he said. “And what upset me was if I was having a mental breakdown, that’s not for you to report on.”

Tom recently revealed that his work on psychological thriller The Crowded Room had allowed him to better understand his triggers and his own mental health.

“Learning about mental health and the power of it, and speaking to psychiatrists about Danny’s struggles, has been something that has been so informative to my own life,” he said.

“I’m no stranger to the physical aspects of the job, doing the whole action-movie thing. But the mental aspect, it really beat me up, and it took a long time for me to recover afterward, to sort of get back to reality.”

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