Photo: Norman Jean Roy/Vogue

In a raw conversation with ‘Vogue’, Nicki Minaj discusses her past struggles with addiction.

Hip-hop icon Nicki Minaj, at 40, is no stranger to the complexities of life, and in a strikingly honest interview with Vogue for their December cover story, she delves into a personal battle with addiction that began with a prescription for menstrual cramps.

Reflecting on her introduction to Percocet, Minaj shares, “No one warned me about the grip of narcotics, how they could take hold of your life without you even realizing it. I found myself reaching for the pills even when the pain was gone.” She credits her strong will for her recovery, adding, “It’s a constant battle. Having faced addiction, you always have to watch the steps you take, always.”

Nicki Minaj
Photo: Norman Jean Roy/Vogue

Ahead of her much-anticipated album, ‘Pink Friday 2’, set to drop on December 8, Minaj also takes a moment to honor the legacies of artists like Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and Prince, acknowledging the often silent struggles they endured with substance abuse under the glare of relentless public scrutiny.

In an intimate portrait for the magazine, Minaj, alongside her 3-year-old son with husband Kenneth Petty, reflects on the ways her father’s own battles with crack cocaine addiction have shaped her understanding and empathy towards those caught in addiction’s relentless grasp. “It’s like I’m my father’s daughter,” she observes, contemplating the complexities of addiction and its impact on families.

Nicki Minaj Talks Overcoming Past Painkiller Addiction
Photo: Norman Jean Roy/Vogue

Nicki Minaj, born Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty, speaks with a newfound wisdom about her father, who tragically passed away in a hit-and-run accident in February 2021. Looking back, she expresses a wish that she had recognized sooner the involuntary nature of his addiction: “Those struggling with substance abuse aren’t making those choices willingly; addiction usurps their lives. They are, in their own way, victims too.”

The hitmaker, known for chart-toppers like “Anaconda,” has previously opened up about her family’s tumultuous relationship with addiction. In 2012, she recounted to The Guardian the journey her father made from addiction to rehabilitation, ultimately finding solace and transformation in faith and church.

As Minaj gears up to unveil her fifth studio album, she shares her excitement and pride with fans, promising that ‘Pink Friday 2’ will be a gift of love to humanity, “I’m overflowing with emotions about this album. It’s been a long journey, but these songs… they’re going to resonate, to connect. This album, it’s a piece of my heart.”