Life-gripping addictions knocked them down, but they’re back on their feet again

Published 11:12 am Thursday, September 5, 2019

“This is the healthiest I have ever been. That’s when I realized it was time for me to start living this way.”

Finding community with CRC

He also found his home within the CRC, and draws strength from those in the group.

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“I love these people,” Peeler said, calling them a major part of the reason he’s been sober two years and three months.

He’s also taken a long look at who he lets into his life and has replaced some of the more negative influences with more supportive, understanding friends around him. But he does see those “night on the town” stories on Snapchat sometimes, which makes him feel like he’s missing out.

Still, his friends find good times for him that don’t involve booze or pills.

“The friend group I have now is very toned-down,” Peeler said. “They’ll still have a beer with dinner, or go out to the bars on the weekends, but they never suggest to go have a beer and let me drive them around. They always have clean and sober fun.

“I’m at a peak in my life. I’m happier now and soberer than I’ve ever been.”

‘Terminal uniqueness’

Aron started his academic career on scholarship at a major university, but his time there was rocky and brief.

One night during his first semester, he was heavily under the influence of Xanax when he called all his family members and told them he was going to kill himself. He awoke to police in his dorm room but had no memory of what happened.

A week before finals, he was arrested for another incident.

“Because I was arrested, I didn’t show up to any of my finals,” Aron said. “Honestly, I probably wouldn’t have gone anyway.”