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Whitney Houston's death at age 48 may have shocked her family, as well as her millions of fans throughout the world -- but a music industry source who knew her claims the self destructive artist's ultimate demise wasn't all that unexpected.
"As sad as this sounds, it's not a great surprise and yet, it's unbelievable," a music source tells People.
Houston's struggles with addiction, particularly during her marriage to Bobby Brown, were long considered the reason her career never approached the level of success she enjoyed in the '80s and early '90s. She and Brown once admitted their drugs of choice were marijuana and cocaine (which reportedly included crack cocaine).
And now prescription drugs and alcohol have been reported as the probable cause of her untimely death on Feb. 11. Reports allege prescription drugs were found in the hotel room where Houston died -- just hours before she was set to make an appearance at Clive Davis' prestigious long-standing party on the eve of the Grammys.
"There are demons she fought privately and publicly for many years," the source continues. "While doing [her upcoming film] Sparkle she was seemingly in a good place but the demons run deep. Very deep."
Those demons, the source adds, plus an entourage of enablers, created a situation where Houston couldn't properly overcome her addictions.
"She's been on a downward spiral for a long time and when you have those people around you that enable the behavior ... she couldn't shake those demons."