I’ve been clean and sober for 4 1/2 years. My battle with addiction lasted over a decade. I remember the day that my wife came to me and said “I love you. But I can’t be with you anymore if you continue to pass out every night. It’s sad to see you ruining your life and missing out on our children growing up.”
“I’m sorry, but if you don’t get clean, I’m leaving you,” she told me. “I don’t want your money. I just want to protect my family.”
Wow! I didn’t realize how bad I was. You never do when you’re in the middle of hardcore addiction. But having 4 DUIs in 5 years also showed me there was a horrible pattern. The fact that each DUI charge was reduced to reckless driving or thrown own just gave me an excuse to keep using.
So I decided to go to rehab, and it was the best decision I’ve ever made. In rehab, you have so much structure. After one week of very, very difficult withdrawal symptoms, I was feeling great. The routine was 8 hours of sleep. Wake up. Exercise and yoga. Breakfast (healthy meals). Addiction prevention class. Lunch. Class again. Dinner. Meetings. Music time. Then sleep.
But what happens when you get out? You’re released back into the world where you became addicted. That’s why 95 percent of those in recovery relapse. There’s no structure after rehab, except for AA/NA meetings, which can be difficult if you’re a husband, father, career man, and celebrity, not to mention very private. So then what?
I struggled so many nights with what I could do to help others stay in recovery after rehab. It took me 4 years to come up with a solution. And that’s AngleStrong. AngleStrong is an initiative to assist recovering addicts stay in recovery. Go to the Anglestrong.com website to read about it. I’ve helped to create an app that any recovering addict can follow daily to stay in recovery. It’s easy: Sign up, fill in your profile, answer the questions each day, and go to the chat line to converse with other recovering addicts. It has daily reminders, positive daily messages, a monthly video call with me answering your questions, and it’s GPS enabled so that we can find you if you relapse. The most intriguing part of the app is that if you don’t check in daily, your lifelines (sponsor, family, loved ones) will be notified. This app will hold you accountable and keep you in recovery if you utilize it properly. So if you know anyone who is struggling with addiction, send them to Anglestrong.com. You could be saving their life today. It’s true.