Nicole Richie: 'I'm So Excited For The Life That Is My Future'

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (August 4, 2007) — As Nicole Richie’s three-part interview with Diane Sawyer came to a close Friday night on ABC’s “20/20,” the 25 year-old discussed her past struggles with addiction, her present state of accepting responsibility, and a bright future fit for her and her unborn child.“I kind of took matters into my own hands and was creating drama in a very dangerous way,” Richie said of her younger years. “I think I was just bored, and I had seen everything. Especially when you’re young, you just want more.”Nicole spoke of the life of privilege that came with being the daughter of music superstar Lionel Richie, noting that “nothing really excited [her] anymore” since she always got everything she wanted. Furthermore, she indicated that she didn’t really feel responsible to anyone else, despite being in the public eye.

“I did not want to be a role model,” she remarked. “And because I didn’t want to be, I really fought it. And whenever I made mistakes, at times I didn’t even really feel bad for them.”

Eventually the boredom and her rebellious nature led to frequent partying.“At 18 I had just been doing a lot of cocaine,” she told Sawyer, but added that she has not touched the drug since that age. “That has been almost nine years,” she said.

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And while she received treatment for her cocaine use, she found herself tangled up with another problem in her early 20’s: an addiction to heroin.“I, again, made the decision for myself, this is something I have to do. I have to get off drugs,” she recalled. “This isn’t ‘the life’ … this was heroin.” Richie conquered her addiction to heroin, and told Diane that it’s been four years since she last touched it.“I’m happy for the things I have accomplished,” she said. “I’m happy I’m not in that state anymore.” Richie understands, however, that change is a gradual thing — and she’s proud to be working toward being a better person.“Change is all about making a decision to change, and you have to start somewhere,” she said. “So for me to say I’m a completely different person, I don’t know right now. But I’ve made the decision to not let myself go ? and I’m working toward that.” Part of her “work” includes accepting responsibility for her actions, in regards to her pending four-day jail sentence and three years probation stemming from a December DUI arrest.“I have a responsibility and it’s something that I did wrong,” said Nicole. “This is my way of paying my dues and taking responsibility and being an adult. ? It’s been a pattern in my life — when I get in trouble, I try to get out of it. And the difference is, is that I’m a mother now and I’m not only thinking about myself.” And with a baby on the way for her and boyfriend Joel Madden — along with plans to launch a clothing line, write her second book and pursue a life-long dream of performing on Broadway, Richie has her sights set on a bright new phase of her life.“I do understand that actions speak louder than words. I’m here telling you, and now it’s really up to me to follow through with what I say. I really mean what I say, and I’m so excited for the life that is in my future,” she said, adding, “I’m so excited about my baby’s life and this is just — it’s so much bigger than me.”

The first two parts of Sawyer’s interview with Richie appeared on “Good Morning America.”

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