Sobering Stories are first-person documentaries of addiction and recovery. This is the 1st in the series.

Pete grew up on Chicago’s south side. At age 14 he had his first drink–peppermint schnapps. Pete hung out with the “jocks” and “burn-outs” in high school, smoking and dealing pot and hash. His bindging grew and grew in the Airforce (which he left after 18 months), followed him to LA and then continued when he returned to Chicago in his mid 20s. But Pete was successful and worked hard at his jobs. He met the girl of his dreams, had a fairy tale wedding and through it all continued to drink. When work became more challenging Pete resorted to drinking more. This ultimately forced his wife of 8 years to leave him. Pete lost not only his wife but dog, house, family and friends. Finally hitting bottom after 35 years, Pete stopped drinking to essentially save his live. Recovery has been a huge challenge but he has been successful. Pete learned that stopping drinking was the easier part. Dealing with the ramifications of his excessiveness and the alcohol-influenced decisions of the past proved to be much harder. Pete gives us a personal and brutally honest insight into his story and how he’s now grown as an individual through his recovery. Run-time: 29 minutes.

Overcoming addiction, for many of those afflicted, is the hardest thing they will ever accomplish. Those who enter recovery often do so as a last resort, having tried on their own to slow down, cut back or compartmentalize their addiction. But to no avail. Every addict has a story and there are common themes of loss of friends, family, possessions and dignity. Despite the absolute power of alcohol and drugs there are incredible success stories written everyday by these normal people who overcome all odds and every day live a new alcohol- and drug-free life.

Sobering Stories celebrates these heroic men and women.

Sobering Stories: Pete from Sobering Stories on Vimeo.

Words and video via Sobering Stories