Dax Shepard revealed that after 16 years of sobriety, he relapsed on painkillers.
He made the revelation on the Sept. 25 episode of his podcast, “Armchair Expert,” where he detailed his recent relapse shortly after celebrating 16 years of sobriety with wife Kristen Bell.
via Page Six:
Shepard began by admitting his first slip-up, which took place eight years ago while visiting his then-ailing father, a cancer patient to whom the actor offered Percocet to ease his pain.
Shepard — who had been prescribed Vicodin at home — said he took double what his other prescription was while bonding with his dad during his last days.
“You know, we had so little in common and so much f–king friction,” Shepard recalled. “But the No. 1 thing we had in common was we were both f–king addicts and we had never used anything together. And we sat there stoned and looked at the lake. And in that moment, I felt elation and I was just happy.”
Bell later showed up by surprise to offer her support, leading Shepard to admit he had relapsed.
“That was eight years ago,” Shepard continued, later adding, “I’ve now had this experience where I did that, I felt bad, but there wasn’t any fallout from it. It was like, I felt bad, I said I felt bad, and then I did just move on and it was fine.”
Due to incurring several motorcycle injuries over the years — resulting in seven surgeries — Shepard has regularly battled medicating himself for legitimate pain versus feeding his addiction.
“I go ride a lot,” he explained. “After I ride sometimes on the track, I feel I’m entitled to take two Vicodin at the end of the day because I am in pain. That again doesn’t feel that crazy.”
Six months ago, Shepard realized he had a problem when he found himself becoming “shadier and shadier” with his pill intake.
“For the last eight weeks maybe, I don’t know … I’m on them all day. I’m allowed to be on them at some dosage because I have a prescription. And then I’m also augmenting that,” he confessed. “And then all the prescriptions run out and I’m now just taking 30 mil Oxys that I’ve bought whenever I decide I can do [it].”
Things hit the fan when Shepard began hiding the habit from wife, Bell, and lying to his podcast co-host, Monica Padman.
“And I’m lying to other people and I know I have to quit,” he acknowledged. “But my tolerance is going up so quickly that I’m now in a situation where I’m taking, you know, eight 30s a day, and I know that’s an amount that’s going to result in a pretty bad withdrawal. And I start getting really scared, and I’m starting to feel really lonely. And I just have this enormous secret.”
“I now start getting pretty visibly detoxy and withdrawly,” he added. “And I lie and start saying I’m having an arthritis flare-up.”
Less than two weeks ago, Shepard confessed to his co-host, telling her, “I’m gaslighting you and I know I am. And I’m making you feel crazy and I’m making Kristen feel crazy.”
He then apologized to his wife and Padman, adding that he fears relapsing again on even worse substances.
“My fear was that if I have one day, I’m going to drink and I’m going to do coke,” he said. “I haven’t drank a beer in 16 years and I haven’t snorted a line in 16 years. And if I have one day, then I might as well f–king have what I really want and then start over. And my fear of that is if I do that, it may take me three years to get that back in the cage and I may die.”
We appreciate his honesty and wish him the best on his road back to sobriety.