“I’ve done this one day at a time, and for anyone out there struggling YOU CAN TOO!” the actor said
Danny Trejo is celebrating a huge milestone in his sobriety journey.
On Wednesday, the 79-year-old actor posted a selfie on social media and as he revealed he’s 55 years sober after struggling with alcohol and drug addiction as a teenager.
“I’m 55 years clean and sober today by the grace of God!” he wrote. “I’ve done this one day at a time, and for anyone out there struggling YOU CAN TOO!”
In the comments section, the Machete star received tons of praise for his accomplishment.
“Congratulations and thanks for being and example of happy purposeful sobriety. And for letting the world know that dreams can come true,” one fan wrote while another person commented, “Congrats on your journey and enjoying a clean and sober life!!! Keep it moving Danny! 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽”
Trejo has been vocal in the past about his difficult childhood and turning to drugs and alcohol at a young age. Growing up in Los Angeles, he said he was only 8 when he first smoked marijuana, 12 when he started drinking alcohol, and 14 when he started using heroin before becoming addicted and dealing the drug. He spent his late teens and early 20s in and out of jail for his drug abuse.
By 24 years old, Trejo ended up serving time in San Quentin State Prison in California, where the actor started attending AA meetings.
“They tell you if you leave [Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous], you will die, go insane or go to jail,” he told Variety back in 2019. “And I proved that right. Every time I left, I went to jail.”
The turning point for Trejo was when a former inmate came to San Quentin to talk about his recovery.
“That guy saved my life,” he recalled. “He said, ‘Why don’t you join us? Before you do anything, just join us. Give it a try. What do you have to lose?’ It was kind of like an awakening. So when I got out of the joint, I went back to meetings.”
After focusing on his recovery, Trejo eventually became a drug counselor. He said that helping others is beneficial for helping maintain his own sobriety.
“I honestly believe this sobriety and being clean depends on your support system,” he told the outlet. “You’ve got this system of people around you that want you to stay clean and sober. If I’m driving down the street and I’m with somebody clean and sober and I say, ‘God, man, I sure could go for a joint right now or a beer,’ this guy will say, ‘Hey, wait a minute. … Let’s go to a meeting.’ … I surround myself with people that are clean and sober.”
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