Did Melissa Etheridge's son genetically inherit drug addiction from David Crosby? Expert says it's very likely
'Research tells us that 40–60% of the risk for developing an addiction is driven by genetics,' says Emily Feinstein, the chief operating officer at the Manhattan-based Center on Addiction
Melissa Etheridge's sperm donor David Crosby could have been a contributor in their 21-year-old son's death, according to a top addiction specialist. "Research tells us that 40–60% of the risk for developing an addiction is driven by genetics," said Emily Feinstein, the chief operating officer at the Manhattan-based Center on Addiction, the Daily Mail reported. Feinstein believes that David's history with drugs could have influenced Beckett Cypheridge's drug addiction. "When an individual with a substance use disorder has a history of addiction in their family, it is likely that genetics were a contributing factor."
Beckett was found dead in a lavish apartment in downtown Denver on Wednesday, May 13. Melissa had taken to social media to announce the tragic passing of her son and said it was due to opioid addiction. However, the city's medical officer revealed that 'the cause and manner of death are pending investigation.'
David Crosby had become famous with the band The Byrds and then was very successful with 'Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young'. The 'Teach Your Children' singer had a long history with drugs and had also served a nine-month jail sentence in Texas during the 1980s for possession of heroin and cocaine. During a different incident, he had been arrested for a drunk driving hit and run case. Back in 1994, the singer had to go through a liver transplant after he contracted hepatitis C which is usually a result of sharing needles. In the 1990s, Melissa and her then-partner Julie Cypher had chosen David Crosby to be the biological father of their child.
His sperm was used for Beckett as well as Beckett's older sister Bailey who is currently 23. Melissa and Julie had contemplated asking David for a long time and had been concerned about his past drug problem.
Back in 2000, Melissa had spoken to Rolling Stone and shared, "For one, he's musical, which means a lot to me and I admire his work. And he has his own life, has his own family. It's not a parental thing for David. David and Jan totally understood that we are the parents," referring to Crosby and his wife Jan.
On Wednesday evening, Melissa had taken to Twitter to announce the tragic passing of her son. She wrote, "Today I joined the hundreds of thousands of families who have lost loved ones to opioid addiction."
"My son Beckett, who was just 21, struggled to overcome his addiction and finally succumbed to it today. He will be missed by those who loved him, his family, and friends. My heart is broken. I am grateful for those who have reached out with condolences and I feel their love and sincere grief," she shared. "We struggle with what else we could have done to save him, and in the end, we know he is out of the pain now," she had continued. His sister took to Instagram to share a heartfelt message about her brother's passing.
Bailey wrote, "I don't know what to say. Today we lost my brother. Too heartbroken and overwhelmed to be eloquent but appreciate all those who have reached out. I love you Beckett. Fly high and watch over us."