Paula Abdul Was a Real Pill(head)

This explains a lot. In the latest issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, frequently ditzy American Idol judge Paula Abdul opens up about her former addiction to painkillers, and how she tried to keep her dependency “hush-hush” from the media.

Abdul recalls how she was diagnosed in 2005 with a chronic pain condition called reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome, which resulted in disabling pain, teeth-chattering and shingles-like lesions. To combat the constant agony, Paula popped muscle relaxants and wore a patch that delivered a pain medication about 80 times more potent than morphine.

When she eventually discovered that she might have a problem, Abdul says, she decided to go cold turkey—and it was no day in the park.

“Withdrawal—it’s the worst thing,” Abdul admits. “I was freezing cold, then sweating hot, then chattering and in so much pain, it was excruciating. But at my very core, I did not like existing the way I had been.”

Sounds like a real ordeal. Of course, dealing with terminally grouchy American Idol judge Simon Cowell on a weekly basis is bound to help prepare a person for any hardship.