Leah McSweeney claims she “could have died” had her parents not kicked her out of their Connecticut home two decades ago.
Back when she was just 18 years old, the “Real Housewives of New York City” star’s parents told her she’d have to live in a therapeutic community run by nuns after she finished her third rehab stint for drugs and alcohol.
McSweeney, now 39, admits to Page Six that she “held [that] against them for years and years” – but finally understood their decision when she got sober for the first time.
“When I finally got sober in 2009 and was in a 12-Step program and did all that work, I realized how if they hadn’t done that, I could have died,” she tells us.
“I wouldn’t have the life that I have now, so I’m so grateful for that.”
In her new book “Chaos Theory,” on newsstands now, McSweeney details her life growing up in both New York City and Newtown, Conn.
After getting expelled from her all-girls Catholic school in eighth grade, the family packed up and moved to the suburbs – a decision that rocked McSweeney’s world.
Shortly after moving, McSweeney began heavily drinking and “doing any drug anyone would give me,” she wrote in the book.
She recalled doing crystal meth for the first time when she was only 14, a drug that made her feel like a “goddamn superwoman.”
McSweeney also recounted having multi-day benders while experimenting with drugs like acid, speed, Vicodin, cocaine and Special K. She spent years couch-surfing and even had a brief stay at a halfway house.
It wasn’t until she had a death premonition in 2009 that she finally became sober. However, she started drinking again a few months before Season 12 of “RHONY.”
“I was like, ‘Wow, that was actually kind of crazy,’” McSweeney tells us. “I didn’t drink for 10 years, then decide to start drinking again, which was obviously shocking to my family and my friends, and then end up on a TV show during this time.
“And I’m trying to hide the fact that it’s such a big deal and trying to be like, this is normal, but it’s like not normal,” she added. “Anyone that’s sober knows to to not drink for 10 years – it’s huge. It’s a big deal.”
The Happy Place founder says she feels “lucky” she was able to get sober again. She celebrated her two-year sobriety mark from alcohol on March 31.
“I do joke around and say, I’m glad that the year I did drink, I was drinking with ‘The Housewives of New York,’ because they’re fun and crazy,” she tells us.