For two years, "Can't Hardly Wait" star Ethan Embry was in the thralls of a serious drug addiction, but he's now six years sober and fighting to change the stigma surrounding drug criminalization.
The "That Thing You Do" actor has long spoken about his history with heroin and painkillers on social media, and he recently spoke with TMZ to detail why he's so open about his darker times.
"The one thing I tried to open up a dialogue about was that you're not alone," he said. "Other people are going through this situation, other people are thinking the same things you're thinking. They're having the same struggles. So what you're going through, it doesn't have to be solitary."
Ethan, a bona fide star of '90s movies, added that in addition to opening up a dialogue about drug addiction, legislation needs to decriminalize the act, but he knows that may be "further down the line."
To get the ball rolling, he said, we need to start "getting people to see the problem a little differently than it's seen right now, removing the criminal element to addiction."
He argues that addiction is more of a health crisis than a criminal crisis.
The nostalgia-inducing actor added, "There's criminality that surrounds addiction but the people in the grips of it themselves, the addiction itself is not what is criminal. That's a disease, that's a sickness."
Earlier this month, he took to Twitter to detail his own personal struggles and his recovery.
"I was stuck in a cycle of running through a subutex script and smoking tar for about two straight years. 6 years ago today I started my kick," he said. "If you are strung out on opiates and want to stop-but the fear of the kick is keeping you from it-I won't lie it f—— sucks."
"But unlike the cycle you are in right now, there is an end in sight," he continued. "Find someone you can trust to walk you through it and get tough."
He also invited followers to direct message him personally if they needed help.
"Life won't get any easier for us when we sober up," he said. "But I do promise you'll be better at dealing with what comes at you clean."