Dax Shepard’s Honesty is By Far the Best Policy
Dax Shepard’s honesty apparently knows no bounds. First he came clean about his recent relapse. No easy feat, especially after 16 years of sobriety. Now the star actor is coming clean about why he came clean. And his words and his actions and his reasoning are inspiring for everyone.
Dax Shepard’s Honesty
By now you’ve heard the word on Dax Shepard’s relapsing after 16 years of sobriety. You may have even heard the word from Healing Properties. It wasn’t the easiest word to share. And it sure wasn’t the most encouraging. Especially for those in recovery. After all, 16 years is a heckuva stint. It was however essential that the word got out there. Not simply to serve as a cautionary tale. (Though there was that.) But because the word served as an exemplary example of how to best handle relapse.
And this is one case where there can never be too many exemplary examples. Everyone who’s battled addiction has suffered a relapse. Everyone. (If you happen to be one of the two people in the whole wide world who hasn’t, please tell us your secret.) As we said just last week, relapse is neither rare or unusual. And it’s most certainly not something anyone should be ashamed of. Ever.
In many ways, relapse is also one of the hardest parts of recovery. It’s brutal on the body; often even dangerous. First, due to the high risk of overdose. Next, due to detox’s inevitable toll. Then, providing the person survives those two whollops, there’s a restoration process. That may take a week. It may take a month. Or it may take many, many months. It all depends upon the extent of the relapse.
Relapse also causes enormous emotional and psychological duress. In fact, the emotional and physical impact is often more difficult to endure than the physical. They’re certainly more difficult to face. The addict feels as if she or he has let down everybody in their orbit, from the postman to their loved ones. They’ll also feel as if they’ve let down themselves. Even if they don’t or won’t show it. And it consequently often justifies some ugly self-pity.
In other words, the emotional and psychological toll taken by relapse can be incredibly debilitating. And there’s really only one sure-fire way to prevent it from sidelining a person for a good long while. What’s the way? Yep, you guessed it. Pure, unmitigated honesty.
Dax Shepard’s honesty not only kept him from prolonging his relapse, but it also prevented him from descending into a cesspool of depression. In fact, you could say his honesty served as a sort of cure-all. By coming clean about using drugs, he was able to stop using drugs. By saying he needed help enabled him to get help. And his not fooling himself or others made it possible for him to stop acting foolishly.
Nobody was really surprised by Dax Shepard’s honesty. After all, the actor’s been open and honest throughout his entire career. Whether it’s his marriage to Kristen Bell, parenting two daughters or working in Hollywood, Shepard is always candid and forthright. It’s actually a large part of his charm, as well as his success.
Dax Shepard’s honesty is also what kept him sober for 16 years. Just as it helped make his relapse much easier to spring back from. Did he endure a world of hurt? Undoubtedly. But honesty surely mitigated the pain.
Dax Shepard Fixes What’s Broken
“There’s a couple of common fallacies about sobriety,” Shepard said during an episode of the podcast Off Camera With Sam Jones in 2019. “One being that people hit a bottom and then that’s that. Most addicts have many bottoms. I mean, I had many events that were even worse than the one that ended up being my last event.”
Shepard then proceeded to speak about a few of these moments, including a vacation where he was “hammered and doing drugs the whole time” and ended up experiencing a revelation in an airport bar.
“I had this moment where I kind of take stock of my life,” he said. “I am about to star in this movie, Zathura; they’re paying me a ton of money; people recognize me at the airport. I’m doing everything I had dreamt of doing for 30 years. It all came true. And I’m the least happy I’ve ever been in my life. I’m closest to not wanting to be alive as I’ve ever been, and I had every single thing on paper that I’d ever wanted. I feel grateful for this because I was able to say, ‘Something much more profound is broken.'”
Indeed. That bout of absolute honesty may have saved Shepard’s life. It certainly led to his seeking and getting help. Help that preceded those 16 years of massive success — and complete sobriety. In fact, it’s fare to say Shepard may not have even achieved such tremendous success were it not for sobriety. He certainly wouldn’t have been able to handle it with such grace and charm.
Has Dax Shepard’s honesty enabled him to entirely fix all that was broken? Perhaps not. But it certainly gave him the strength and the wherewithal to check himself before completely wrecking himself. And what’s the big deal about a few cracks anyway? As Leonard Cohen so sublimely sang: “There’s a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”
Dax Shepard has shown us all how best to live with the cracks, and to enjoy all the light they allow in. And for that we all should be grateful.
Healing Properties provides top notch sober living for men who are battling alcoholism and addiction. In fact, we’ve been providing just that since 2002. That means we’ve helped thousands upon thousands of men succeed in sobriety. And we’ll continue helping men so long as there’s a need. Check us out on Facebook. And if you or someone you know and love is having difficulties with any kind of substance abuse, please give us a ring at 561-563-8882 We’re here for you.
(For more of Dax Shepard’s honesty, check out his terrific podcast, Armchair Expert, which features interviews with everyone from Sara Gilbert and Sofia Coppola to Bob Woodward and Jon Bon Jovi. Above photo taken from Armchair Expert “Day 7.”)