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When I ran for attorney general in the 2018 election, I came out publicly as someone in long-term addiction recovery.

I made that decision because I felt it important to do my small part to end the stigma that comes along with addiction. How powerful it would be to have an attorney general who was open about being in recovery and who embraced recovery.

Although I ultimately did not prevail in that election, it still remains an issue I am very passionate about. So you’ll see it make an appearance on here from time to time.

Addiction is a problem everywhere, but especially in my profession. A 2016 study found that 1 out of every 5 lawyers had a substance abuse problem with 31.9 percent of all lawyers under the age of 30 suffering with a substance abuse problem.

All of us in the recovery community have our own journey. For some, practices like yoga and meditation help a great deal. For others, their faith is critical to keeping them clean and sober. For me, 12-step works well. It helps me to stay grounded and provides a good structure for my recovery.

Recovery opens up limitless doors of opportunity for those willing to seek it. It allows you to be present for your friends and family and to really pursue your dreams.

Most who suffer from addiction never find long-term recovery. I am grateful every day that I was granted the gift of recovery and I now have an obligation to give back what was so finally given to me when I was first trying to get sober.

In 12-Step, we learn to live life one day at a time. I bring this perspective to all I do now. There will be great days and terrible days too. And that’s okay. We can get through any obstacle, one day at a time.

In 12-Step, we also learn the best way to get out of your head is to stop thinking about yourself and go help someone else.

I am grateful to have a profession where I can help others every day just by showing up for work.

I’ll never know why I was so lucky in finding recovery and a fulfilling life. One thing I know is that I better give back and I better make the most of it.

 

Best Regards,

 

Ryan Torrens

Consumer litigation attorney