Celebrity Rob Lowe Reflects on How the 'Gift of Alcoholism' Has Changed His Life "Being in recovery has given me everything of value that I have," says Lowe By Matthew Cole Weiss Published on September 13, 2015 10:35AM EDT Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty On Saturday night, Rob Lowe received the Spirit of Sobriety award for being clean for 25 years at The Brent Shapiro Foundation Summer Spectacular in Beverly Hills, California. “Recovery is a road of many surprising, unexpected gifts,” Lowe, 51, told PEOPLE before the ceremony. “This is certainly one of them.” With wife Sheryl, 54, and youngest son John Owen, 19, by his side, Lowe spoke candidly about his journey to recovery and how he helps others through their own. “Everyone at some point has to come to terms with their own relationship with drugs and alcohol. I have learned a few things over the years. Whenever I have an opportunity to share that with people, it’s very fulfilling to do it.” After being given his award by music producer Steve Tyrell, Lowe humbly took the stage to address the audience of over 1,000 guests about his struggle. “Hello I’m Rob, alcoholic,” Lowe joked. “Your line is ‘Hi Rob’.” After the laughter subsided, Lowe got very serious about his own addiction. “Being in recovery has given me everything of value that I have in my life,” Lowe told the crowd. “Integrity, honesty, fearlessness, faith, a relationship with God, and most of all gratitude. It’s given me a beautiful family and an amazing career. I’m under no illusions where I would be without the gift of alcoholism and the chance to recover from it.” In the end, Lowe made sure to give thanks to all the people who have supported him over the past 25 years, including his wife Sheryl. “She inspired me to get sober. She’s put up with my defects of character as they call it. In sobriety the lessons keep coming if you’re lucky enough to be along as long as I have. “She’s stood by through all of that. And I love you very much,” he told his wife from the stage.