Charlie Sheen On Sobriety: It Had To Be Done

By Kelly Burch 01/21/19

“I made some changes to give myself a shot to do some cool things professionally. And I’m proud of finally being consistent. And reliable. And noble,” Sheen said.

Charlie Sheen

Charlie Sheen, who celebrated one year of sobriety in December after one of the most infamous public relapses in recent years, said that getting sober was a necessity. 

Talking about his announcement of being one year sober, Sheen told Extra, “That was good, that was good, yes, indeed — had to be done, had to be done.” 

Two weeks before Christmas, Sheen posted a picture of his one-year chip from Alcoholics Anonymous, adding a caption “so, THIS happened yesterday! a fabulous moment, in my renewed journey. #TotallyFocused.”

He had formerly revealed that he had started drinking and abusing drugs after being diagnosed with HIV in 2012. However, he said that today he is in good health, physically, mentally and emotionally.  

“I feel good,” he said. 

Sheen was speaking at the California Strong Celebrity Softball Game, which was organized to help fund recovery efforts from natural disasters, including the fires in California. Sheen said that supporting his community in Malibu was important to him. 

He said, “It’s where I grew up, been here since, jeez, 1970.”

Sheen told Us Weekly, “I made some changes to give myself a shot to do some cool things professionally. And I’m proud of finally being consistent. And reliable. And noble.”

Before his diagnosis of HIV, Sheen had been sober for 11 years, so he knows that long-term sobriety is possible, he said during an interview with Dr. Oz in 2016. 

“There was a stretch where I didn’t drink for 11 years. No cocaine, no booze for 11 years. So I know that I have that in me,” he said, according to People.

Despite his long-term sobriety, Sheen said that he didn’t have adequate healthy coping mechanisms to help him deal with his HIV diagnosis and the worries about what the disease would mean for his life. 

“It was the only tool I had at the time, so I believed that would quell a lot of that angst. A lot of that fear. And it only made it worse,” he said. “It was to suffocate the anxiety and what my life was going to become with this condition and getting so numb I didn’t think about it.”

Sheen’s father, Martin Sheen, who is in recovery from alcoholism, has spoken publicly about how hard it was to watch his son relapse, knowing there was nothing he could do to intervene. 

"What he was going through, we were powerless to do much, except to pray for him and lift him up,” Martin Sheen said in 2015.

However, he said that his experience with addiction has helped him to understand what his son was going through in active addiction. 

"The best way to heal is to help healing someone else, and it takes one to know one, so you can appreciate what someone's going through if you've gone there yourself," Martin Sheen said. 

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Kelly Burch writes about addiction and mental health issues, particularly as they affect families. Follow her on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn.