Eliza Dushku calls herself an actress, a Bostonian, and an aunt. She also calls herself an alcoholic.
The Watertown native, best known for her roles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Bring It On, detailed her battle with alcohol and drug addiction at the New Hampshire Youth Summit on Opioid Awareness in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Tuesday. The actress was there at the request of Jim Wahlberg — Mark Wahlberg’s brother — and the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation, which sponsored the summit.
Dushku told the audience of local students that she has been sober for more than eight years, but previously struggled with substance abuse.
“It was fun, and I loved it, until it wasn’t,” Dushku said. “Drugs didn’t love me. “They didn’t love my family. They definitely didn’t love my friends that died.”
Dushku mentioned that when she first got sober, it was for her family, not for herself.
“I remember my brother telling me he didn’t want me to be around my niece because he didn’t trust me,” Dushku said. “I’m a really good auntie today, but you know what? He was right.
“I’m a good person, but when I did drugs and I drank, I didn’t make good decisions,” Dushku continued. “I’m sure some of you can relate to that, but all it takes is one bad decision.”
Dushku concluded her speech on a positive note, mentioning that she’s fulfilling a lifelong dream by attending college at age 36, and encouraging audience members to not lose hope if they’re facing problems in their own lives.
“I got sober for my family,” Dushku said. “But today, I’m sober for me, and I’m sober for you. Because drugs and alcohol are powerful, but we are more powerful.”