Demi Lovato Celebrates Six Years of Sobriety: 'It IS Possible'
Demi Lovato has officially spent six years without drugs and alcohol
The 25-year-old singer — who has long been vocal about her struggles with addiction and her treatment for bipolar disorder, bulimia, self-harm and substance abuse — spread the good news on Twitter early Thursday morning.
“Just officially turned 6 years sober,” Lovato wrote. “So grateful for another year of joy, health and happiness. It IS possible. 🙏🏼”
Lovato’s news comes months after the release of her acclaimed documentary Simply Complicated, in which she chronicled the daily struggles she experiences with her recovery. The candid film even began with Lovato admitting she was using cocaine for the majority of filming for her 2012 documentary Stay Strong.
“I was so honest in that documentary but I wasn’t honest enough. And I think it was because I wasn’t honest with myself,” Lovato told PEOPLE in October. “Yes, I did touch on issues and certain things that were real and true but I think the biggest problem was I was lying to myself. And in this documentary, I’m 1000 percent sober and I get to really explain myself and apologize to my fans. There wasn’t anything that was off-limits.”
“It’s something I definitely feel relief from,” she added. “Being so honest and open and talking about subjects that I never talked about before is a big part of why I feel relieved … I feel like I got to really speak my truth.”
In Simply Complicated, Lovato said her first encounter with drinking and partying was in high school, but it all escalated during her Disney Channel career.
“I loved it,” she recalled of her past drug use, starting at age 17. “I felt out of control the first time I did it. My dad was an addict and an alcoholic. Guess I always searched for what he found in drugs and alcohol because it fulfilled him and he chose that over a family.”
The Grammy nominee received inpatient treatment for the first time in 2011 after punching her backup dancer Alex “Shorty” Welch, who outed her for using Adderall during the Colombian leg of the Camp Rock 2 Tour. The incident led to a two-month “bender” when Lovato was “using daily.”
“I just came to a breaking point; the next 12 months were extremely difficult,” she said about entering treatment at 18, adding that relapsing was imminent. “I was using while I had a sober companion and I went through like 20 sober companions. I was either craving drugs or on drugs. I was not easy to work with. It’s embarrassing to look back at the person that I was.”
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It wasn’t until her management team threatened to walk away and her family said she couldn’t be around her now 16-year-old sister Madison De La Garza that Lovato was actually motivated to change herself.
In September of last year, Lovato received the Spirit of Sobriety award at the annual Brent Shapiro Foundation for Drug Prevention Summer Spectacular in Beverly Hills — explaining that her sobriety is something that she works on daily.
“Every day is a battle,” she said. “You just have to take it one day at a time, some days are easier than others and some days you forget about drinking and using, but for me, I work on my physical health, which is important, but my mental health as well.”
Later, when talking to PEOPLE, Lovato again explained why she wanted to be open about her journey.
“When I went to rehab, my manager said you know, ‘You can either keep this private or you can share this with the world, and hopefully, someone can learn from your struggles,’ ” Lovato remembered. “And when I heard that I thought, ‘I think it’s more important that people learn from my struggles than to keep it to myself.’ ”