Nam Tae Hyun (ex-WINNER) opens up about drug addiction, checking into rehab, and piling up debt

If you’ve been reading about former WINNER member Nam Tae Hyun recently, it probably hasn’t been for good news. Back in March of this year, he apologized for a drunk driving incident, for which he was recently fined. Then, following the episode where Seo Min Jae accused the singer of abuse and use of Philopon then retracted it, both of them have tested positive for methamphetamines in the subsequent investigation and have admitted use.

So things haven’t been going well for a while for the former idol, but hopefully the interview he’s giving to In Depth 60 Minutes for KBS marks a turning point for him, as he speaks out about his struggles with addiction, dealing with debt, and going through rehab.

He mentioned that self-medicating in the industry eventual spiraled.

While working in the entertainment industry, Nam Taehyun talked about how he had to take diet pills, which were also classified as narcotics. He also spoke about how he had to take sleeping pills due to his insomnia. Although he started by taking medical-related drugs, he said how that opened the path to taking illegal drugs.

He also discussed the addiction leading to financial problems, including mid-six figures of debt.

Nam Taehyun also spoke about how his drug addiction ended up affecting him financially. Following the conclusion of his drug usage, Nam Taehyun found himself in ₩500 million KRW (about $395,000 USD) of debt. He has to sell not only his house but also his parents’ house due to the debt, and is soon planning on working at a restaurant as a part-time worker to continue paying off said debts. He has sold everything he owns of value except his guitar, which has sentimental value and is his cherished item. He also showed the production team the continued messages urging that he repay his debts.

That led him to check into rehab out of desperation.

Due to his desperation, Nam Tae Hyun checked himself into rehabilitation. He is currently being treated at the Incheon DARC (drug abuse rehabilitation center). He stated that the reason he checked into rehab was that he felt like the people around him were leaving one by one as his body and mind were slowly ruined by his drug abuse.

He also sends a message to teenagers to not get involved with drugs.

This is just a snippet of the conversation, but I thought it was relevant and important enough to post anyway, just because it speaks not only to what some in the industry have to do in order to put up with being in it, but also hopefully lets people know about what he’s been dealing with. Hopefully it represents him turning things around, especially amongst all the increasingly dim news stories about his legal troubles.


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