Did Simon Cowell Make Nikki McKibbin a Junkie?

A few folks went on to become superstars after appearing on American Idol’s first season in 2002—Kelly Clarkson, Simon Cowell, Ryan Seacrest, Randy Jackson.

But proving that all Idols are indeed not created equal, Nikki McKibbin—who placed third in the competition that year behind Clarkson and Justin Guarini—wasn’t one of them.

“I came out of Idol with a lack of self-confidence,” McKibbin tells Us. “I had never been told I wasn’t good enough. Having to hear it for so many weeks from Simon Cowell killed me inside. I couldn’t get the sh*t he had said to me out of my head.”

This mag details McKibbin’s descent into drugs and alcohol, but notes that she is now sober after being treated on VH1’s Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.

Hey, if one reality show makes you a junkie, why not go onto another to get clean?

“I wouldn’t say that this was Simon’s fault,” McKibbin continues. “It just added to the addict that I already was.”

Well, you might not blame Simon, Nikki, but what would Ellen DeGeneres say?