It’s a time of celebration for actor Jason Biggs, who announced on Instagram this past week that he is now one year sober from drugs and alcohol.
Posting a photo of his one-year coin from Alcoholics Anonymous, Biggs cemented the occasion with a heartfelt reflection on his struggle. Noting that he first tried to get sober five years ago, he wrote that at that time, “the weight of [his] obsession with booze and drugs became too heavy for [him] to handle.”
Most recognizable for his role in the teen cult classic American Pie, Biggs, now 40, has gone on to star in the Netflix series Orange is the New Black, among dozens of other film and TV roles. The actor has over 500,000 followers on the Instagram account where he shared his good news.
After rising to fame in the early 2000s through the success of the American Pieseries, Biggs married actress Jenny Mollen in 2008. The couple has two young sons.
In his post, Biggs admits that the journey to sobriety had not been easy, stating that, “After some fits and starts, I’ve managed to put together one year of sobriety. I’m as proud of it as anything in my life.”
A flood of comments rushed beneath Biggs’ post, with countless others sharing their own stories of recovery, encouraging Biggs to continue his good work.
Mollen joined in to congratulate her husband in his own post, writing in part that, “I know how hard you work. I see you. I love you. Thank you for your fight.”
In AA, achieving one year of sobriety is usually commemorated with the receiving of a coin like Biggs’. The one-year coin is often a silver piece (but can also be bronze), and is emblazoned with an AA motto, “To thine own self be true.” That line was originally spoken in the Shakespeare classic Hamlet.
The back of the coin features the Serenity Prayer, written by Reinhold Niebuhr and familiar to anyone who has taken part in Alcoholics Anonymous.
Achieving one year of sobriety is a terrific achievement, particularly, as Biggs notes in his post, because the journey to that point is typically not a straight line. It is an accomplishment that should be commemorated and celebrated by not only that person, but also by those who have offered support along the way.
Attempting to get sober multiple times, like in Biggs’ experience, is extremely common, as the nature of addiction is complex. One method of treatment may work for one person and not for another; even methodologies such as AA are not one-size-fits-all.
Though as Biggs concludes in his post, “If you’re struggling, know there’s help.”
It is an important reminder to all who are dealing with substance dependence or have dealt with it in the past.
Addiction is an isolating disease, and when public figures such as Biggs can use their platform to remind others that they are not alone, we are taking another step toward lessening the stigma of getting the needed treatment and finding sobriety.
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