Just days ago, Brian McCook, the man behind drag icon Katya Zamolodchikova, returned from a much-needed hiatus by posting to Twitter with a message that “The Bitch is Back” and Cat Woman spread on a bed.
Since Katya announced she’d be taking a break from drag, everyone who loves Katya has been wondering where McCook has been during the two-month escape.
Well, in what has been a shocking interview on his new podcast Whimsically Volatile, McCook has shared that during his hiatus he was in rehab. McCook has struggled with substance abuse and addiction for much of his life and even with Katya’s success, McCook found himself reaching rock bottom.
During the podcast, co-hosted by Craig MacNeil, McCook mentions that he went to rehab voluntarily to Serenity Care Center in Surprise, Arizona.
“I had a complete and total psychotic break. I could not tell what was real and not real,” McCook told MacNeil, “this rehab rocked my world.”
He eventually resorted to rehab because he was experiencing “Hallucinations, visions, auditory hallucinations—especially when they take the form of God.”
One night during an episode, McCook was detained for causing a disturbance at his home in Los Angeles. This forced his apartment management to evict McCook.
McCook also explains that he was served with a restraining order by someone near and dear to his heart and he also took a swing at another person—some very low moments for him. McCook was truly struggling. Drugs and exhaustion ultimately led to heart attack for McCook.
So after working long nights, with very little sleep, and everything that had happened to McCook since his success after All Stars 2, it’s obvious had reached an extremely low point. He decided he needed to take a break. In order to recharge, he decided to go back to his mother’s home in Massachusetts where he came in contact with meth once again.
McCook mentions “Tina turnt me into a trollup and trap and a trickster. Which stands for the three Ts–Truth, trauma and trials.”
He recounts that he reached a point where he could only have sex with drug dealers because they were the only ones that could keep up with him.
So with a drug relapse in Australia right after RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 2, McCook was constantly experiencing constant episodes of psychosis and with the support of his family went into recovery during his hiatus.
McCook shares that he thought he had a drug problem, but it was more than that.
Katya has canceled most of her appearances for 2018, and there is still no word when Katya will re-emerge on stage. McCook’s battle with addiction will always be a huge player in his work and as scary as it is, we are grateful for Katya as a manifestation of this struggle.
Welcome back, Katya—best wishes for continued health and great success!
Listen to the podcast Whimsically Volatile here: