‘Southern Charm’ star Craig Conover reveals Adderall addiction

Craig Conover’s addiction to Adderall became so bad in 2018, he didn’t know how to film “Southern Charm” without it.

Detailing the pill abuse in his new book, the reality star said he began really taking the drug in the early seasons of the show, around 2014, after feeling pressure to always “be on.”

“In those early seasons, I often blamed my internal demons on the outside pressures I was facing,” he writes in “Pillow Talk: What’s Wrong with My Sewing?,” adding that the stress of work led him to excessive partying.

“The need to finish my work caused me to take Adderall. The anxiety of needing to ‘be on’ when I went out to the bars caused me to take more Adderall. And so on.”

By the end of Season 3, the Sewing Down South founder, 33, writes he was “hopelessly hooked on Adderall” and was taking three 15mg pills a day.

Craig Conover and Whitney Sudler-Smith talking at a "Southern Charm" event
Conover confessed that he wasn’t able to balance all his responsibilities in the early years of “Southern Charm.”
NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Then, prior to Season 5, Conover’s breakup with co-star Naomie Olindo caused him to take “more Adderall than ever” with “zero reason to be taking it other than to numb my own sadness.”

He exclusively told Page Six recently that he was “depressed and didn’t realize it.”

A photo of Craig Conover's book cover
Conover explained in his new book how his Adderall abuse became a cycle.
Gallery Books

“I’d take Adderall as like a quick, happy pill, but I just didn’t know that I was adding to my depression.”

According to his book, a trip to the Bahamas between Seasons 5 and 6 led Conover to realize he had a problem. He and a friend were spearfishing in the middle of the ocean when he was instructed to alert his pal if he saw a shark. As one approached, he dove in to warn his friend, but “couldn’t hold [his] breath for more than a few seconds” because of the Adderall he’d taken earlier that morning.

Craig Conover taking a selfie in a pool
Conover initially stopped taking Adderall while on a Bahamas adventure.
caconover/Instagram

Luckily, he was able to warn him and no one was injured, but the incident led him to briefly quit taking Adderall. As filming kicked off for Season 6 in 2018, Conover relapsed because he “simply didn’t know how to film without being on Adderall,” he writes in the book.

After filming wrapped, Conover made a “conscious decision to quit the stuff for good” and founded his sewing company, which he tells us gave him “something to live for.”

Craig Conover posing for a selfie at his Sewing Down South store
Conover tells us that Sewing Down South “gave me something to live for.”
caconover/Instagram

“That kind of sounds dark, but it gave me purpose, and Sewing Down South has just turned into this incredible part of my life,” he explains, adding, “Finding that business finally just allowed me to have that purpose and something to work for instead of getting validation from going out or or other unhealthy means that I may have done.”

Conover came clean about his addiction during the Season 6 reunion and hasn’t taken the drug since. “Pillow Talk: What’s Wrong with My Sewing?” is on shelves Tuesday.

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