Kem: 25 Years of Sobriety, Opens Up on Overcoming Drug Addiction
In an interview with The Huffington Post, the singer opens up about his battle with drug addiction and the point where he decided enough was enough and set out to seek help in 1990. According to Kem, that point came after multiple stints in jail as well as time in the hospital and homelessness in his native Detroit, not to mention damaging his relationship with family and friends.
“My addiction brought me to my knees. So it was like, ‘Look, either you’re going to do this or you’re going to die out here in the streets,’” Kem told the Post “I could no longer continue living the way I was living, and I didn’t know how to stop. And it was at that point when we [as addicts] give up on our own plan and our own ideas on how to solve our dilemmas — as far as recovery is concerned — we have to get out of the way.”
“The principles of my recovery are principles that permeate through every area of my life,” he continued. “You hear it in the music, they run my business. So I’m not just clean and sober from drugs and alcohol, my recovery is the foundation for everything in my life right now.”
Crediting God for being his biggest inspiration for remaining sober, Kem shines an additional light on the spiritually minded people he surrounds himself for his sobriety as well as helping others overcome their personal obstacles with addiction.
In addition, Kem maintains an active role in the Detroit community through his non-profit organization, Mack & Third, Inc. as well as speaking out in support of supervised treatment for nonviolent drug addicts. According to the Post, Mack & Third raises funds and resources to support the city’s homeless.
In light of his own personal reality check, Kem has a message of encouragement for folks, which is to do what is necessary to overcome addiction.
“It ain’t no mystery to it. You can do it, you just have to be brought to a place where you’re willing to do that,” he said. “The trouble is for most of us in recovery, recovery is not something that you automatically choose. We have to hit the bottom. We have to be brought to our knees before we make a decision.”
“I can’t tell you about it, unless they’ve been brought to a place where they’re able and willing to receive help, and that’s usually when we’re at our worst. But it is available to everybody who’s willing to work for it.”