Matt: What’s up everybody? This is Matt.
Greg: And this is Greg here.
Matt: And we are with Project Unbroken. And today we wanted to talk a little bit about our background, who we are and why we think that our experiences can maybe help people who are struggling with addiction or struggling with substance abuse. We just want to give you a little bit of background so I’ll let Greg start with it.
Greg: Yes, we’ve had a lot of people ask, “What’s your story?” And we’ve talked about, we’ve been through addiction. We were heroin addicts, started with pills, went to heroin and people want to know how that starts. So for me, I kind of grew up normal upbringing. I did play sports and all that. I was a pretty decent athlete. I lifted weights when I was 12. We used to lift together and all that. Through school, it was the normal stuff, a little bit of marijuana, a little bit of drinking. And then as I got out of school, I experimented with pills. For the first time, I remember, we were looking at Philly, we were 18 or 19, and I had my first Oxycontin. I remember the first time I was like, “Holy shit, this is great.” And from there I started experimenting with pills maybe once a week, twice a week and I kept it under control for a while and eventually that led into heroin addiction. And I’ll pick up from there. Matt you can kind of explained your childhood now and how you got to heroin.
Matt: Yeah. Similar paths. Greg and I grew up close to each other. Kind of met in high school. Awesome experience through high school. We had a lot of fun. We were best friends for a while then we kind of came into the pill thing at the same time. Came into heroin addiction around the same time. And we kind of managed it for, I don’t know, a couple years I guess before things start to fall apart. Addiction will cause your life to be unmanageable at a certain point. So, after that we kind of went our separate ways, and we were lucky enough to both find recovery and a level of happiness that I think we were both looking for the entire time.
Greg: So let’s go back a little bit.
Greg: We did pills. We got into heroin slow. We kind of explained how that happens in some videos. And we were on heroin for what? Maybe two years or so, would you say? Hard, two or three years?
Matt: Yeah. Pushing three, yeah.
Greg: And it was pretty quickly when we did the first bag of heroin, each separately. We actually did it during separate times. It pretty quickly led to everyday, if I remember correctly.
Matt: Yeah. Yeah. It wasn’t long. Pill’s were manageable for a little while.
Greg: Yeah, and during our heroin addiction, I can remember often that we would kind of pull each other back in. Right? Like, I think the first year was pretty fun. We were like, “Oh, this is great.”
Greg: And then it got to the point where we’re like, “All right, this isn’t so fun anymore.” And we wanted out. And we kept trying to get out. Maybe I would try to quit and Matt would drag me back. Matt would try to quit, I would drag him back. So it’s like we’re best friends but we’re turning into each others worst enemies because we keep pulling each other back in. And that’s how a lot of addicts do with each other when they’re trying to quit together. So it got to a point where Matt, luckily was the one who was able to separate. And I was mad for a while. For a long time, for a few years, I wasn’t happy and I was kind of like, “Screw Matt.” You know what I mean? But eventually I really wanted to quit. I really got to that point that Matt got to a few years before I did and I was like, “Oh.” I’m thankful now that Matt did that and now I see why he did it and now I get it. And it was about five or six years after we went different ways that I think Matt contacted me. He had opened a gym and he’s like, “Hey man, I hear you’re doing pretty good. Are you interested in coming in my gym and starting to work out together again.” And that’s kind of where we started rekindling the friendship.
Matt: Yeah. It was good timing because I know at that point I was a couple years away from my addiction. I went through the Suboxone route and used that as a maintenance drug for about a year to ween myself completely off. And when Greg and I got back in touch, he was working his way off of Methadone.
Matt: And he got there pretty quickly. I think we have some other videos where he talks a little bit more about that process. But it was just interesting to see. Meeting back up five years later. It was almost like we were opening up a time capsule.
Matt: And we could go back and we could weigh the different things that we went through. What worked. What didn’t work for both of us. A lot of things were similar. A lot of things were different. And we thought this would be helpful for other people to see. That everybody has their own path when they’re trying to come out of addiction or dealing with substance abuse or really any struggle for that matter. Like something that makes you feel like you’re tied down. And I thought we might have an interesting perspective on it that might be helpful for other people.
Greg: Yeah. I think it’s important that people understand where we’re at now. As far as me, I’m happily engaged. I have a son. I have someone who’s going to be my stepson. I have a great family. I’m very happy. I’m in the best shape of my life. Successful in business. I have multiple business’s that are very successful. So, really I’m at the top of the top as far as my life goes. And it wasn’t just seven, eight years ago that I was at the bottom. So, Matt, where are you at today?
Matt: A very similar place. I’m getting married in April. I have a three year old daughter. And I own my own business as well. It’s neat because it’s one of those things. Addiction’s something you go through that you deal with so much adversity and struggle and pain and just when you come out on the other side, I think you just have a much better relationship with what happiness actually is.
Matt: And how you can attain it. And what you need to do to attain it. Because I think that’s what we were looking for with our substance abuse.
Matt: I think that’s what a lot of people are looking for, you’re trying to find happiness and you’re filling a void I guess, or at least that’s what I was doing. And going through that whole process has really opened my eyes up to saying, “You need to put work into your happiness. You need to put that effort in.” I think I was looking for a shortcut for a long time with drugs and drinking and all that stuff.
Matt: And now this is just been a much more sustainable and way more rewarding way of living.
Greg: Yeah, so I think the point … you know a lot of people ask us or are interested when they hear kind of about our story. How we tell how we were best friends and then we kind of just, I mean literally, when we stopped our friendship we literally, it was like, that.
Matt: There was no contact.
Greg: There was no planning, no contact. It was just like one day, bam. And we hung out every single day. People are like, “That’s crazy.” And then five, six years later we rekindled. We got back into positive things together and now we’re positive influences on each other. So, I think it’s important for people to know where we’re at because if you’re an addict or a love one of an addict, there’s hope. You know what I mean? We went all the way from being heroin addicts all the way to being extremely happy business owners, family people, fathers. So, that’s why we wanted to get our story out there and kind of the background on it. If you have any questions on it, let us know, we’ll go deeper into it. And I think that’s it.
Matt: Yeah. That’s it guys. We look forward to making a lot of these videos and hopefully sharing a lot of our experiences. If you guys have any questions that you would like us to answer or topics that you’d like us to cover about any of that stuff, shoot us a message. Leave us a comment. We want to make this an interactive experience. So, we look forward to talking to you guys soon.
Greg: And again, we’ll have a little documentary coming out, which will be a little more, I think, explanatory on our back story if you’re interested. So, look for that in the coming few weeks or couple months or so.
Matt: All right guys. Thanks for watching. We will talk to you soon.
Greg: See ya everyone.