Today, Robert Downey Jr. is one of the most popular and highest-paid actors in Hollywood. However, he wasn’t always the successful actor known around the world. For years, Downey Jr. spent time in and out of rehab, sober, relapsing, getting arrested, and repeating the cycle. As someone so visible in the public view, he has taken his story of hardships and turned it into an inspiring triumph over addiction. His path can prove to others that you can always rise back up no matter how low you sink.

The Hard Times

Robert Downey Jr. was born in 1965 and was exposed to drugs at an early age by his father. He ended up using drugs to bond with his father, which he states led him to continue using drugs and getting drunk throughout his 20s and 30s. In 1987, Downey Jr. starred in Less Than Zero, which kick-started his acting career. He continued using drugs and alcohol while he acted in a number of movies after this, staying sober enough to film and then going on days-long benders. In 1995, he was arrested multiple times and spent time in various rehab facilities. The same pattern continued in 1996 when the police stopped him for speeding and found him high, in possession of heroin and cocaine, and having a firearm on his front seat. This time was the beginning of his spiral.

Hitting Rock Bottom

In 1999, Downey Jr. was sentenced to three years in prison, but he was paroled after just one year. He then was arrested two more times and spent six months in rehab due to a court order. His wife eventually left him and took their son, and he was fired from acting on Ally McBeal. He had massive amounts of debt and almost had to file for bankruptcy. At this time, he decided to take a full year and confront his substance abuse directly and recover.

Recovery to Iron Man

After his year of focusing on recovery, Downey Jr. began acting again in 2002. In 2003, he met his wife Susan Levin and became fully committed to sobriety. They now are married and have two children together. Because of his dedication to recovery, he has been able to land key movie roles such as Tony Stark in Iron Man and The Avengers, his most successful roles yet. He still continues to focus on his recovery and spends time with his wife and children. He practices yoga and refers back to the 12-Steps to keep him on track in recovery.

Many people believe that their struggles with addiction leave no hope of recovery. However, Robert Downey Jr. has proven that you can always get back up no matter how far you sink. For men, the stigma surrounding addiction and mental health can cause them to not reach out for help. However, it is essential to know that recovery is possible. Use Robert Downey Jr.’s story as an inspiration for your own healing. You can start your journey today at Alta Loma Transformational Services. Call us anytime at (866) 457-3843.