Recognizing you have a problem takes a lot of courage, perhaps more so when you are under the scrutiny of the public. But that isn’t stopping Lena Dunham from using her platform to shed light on substance abuse, while bravely admitting it’s something she has struggled with. Today, on Instagram, the 32-year-old actress, writer, and producer revealed she is one year sober
“Today I’m in the miraculous position of being one year sober. I’ve done a lot of cool things in this life, but none has brought me the peace, joy and lasting connections that being part of a sober fellowship has,” she wrote alongside a smiling selfie. “Life is full of problems, but the cool thing about this one is that there is a solution: in every city, in many countries, you can find a group of people who are working hard to live sober, accountable lives and want to support you on your quest to do the same.”
Dunham goes onto to explain that it took time to recognize her problem with substance abuse. “I didn’t know I had an issue with drugs for a long time: because they were doctor prescribed, because I was outwardly successful, and not a wild in da club party chick,” she said.
She continued: “But wouldn’t you say that hurting people you love is an issue? Wouldn’t you say feeling lost and lonely much of the time is an issue?”
Statistics show that prescription painkillers, sleeping pills, and anti-depressants are among the most abused drugs in the U.S., as dependence often develops before the user even realizes it. Admitting to and facing the problem takes tremendous strength, and for that, we applaud Dunham. She is using her influence for good – to help dismantle the shame of seeking help for substance abuse.
“Sobriety hasn’t fixed my world. Life is still challenging — that’s the nature of the game,” she explained. “But every day I am surprised by the richness and depth of, well, reality. I don’t need to escape this beautiful carnival. Instead, I’m on the ride.”
Dunham finishes the post with an important message for any followers who may be going through the same struggle: “Please remember you are never too far gone, too broken or too unique. There are people in plain sight waiting to help you. Let’s do this.”
This type of public encouragement is needed, as evidenced by her comment section. One follower wrote: “I’m on day 3 of my journey and really needed this. Thank you and congrats.”