DETAILS: What was your lowest point?
Wes Bentley: Well, I'll give you a picture of where I was in '07. I was risking everything to get drugs. I was driving around with homeless guys and people just out of prison, then I'd hit the streets and smoke all day. I'd already nodded off on set a couple times, and now I was being asked to leave auditions mid-reading because it was just so sad for them. I missed my brother's wedding because I was so messed up. I was on the verge of selling to support my habit. The shakes, hearing voices, paranoia—those were daily occurrences for me. I was nearly dead, and I didn't care.
DETAILS: Was there a moment when you said to yourself, "Okay, I've had enough"?
Wes Bentley: When I met my wife. I saw then what I have now. I saw life. We met through a mutual friend, and all of us went to an Iron Maiden concert, which is sooo romantic. Eddie the Head [the band's mascot] just brings people together. It still took me a while to get sober after that, but the switch had happened. We were long-distance for a while, and I'd try to be sober for her, but I ended up withdrawing with her—and I hated that. That's when I told her everything. She wasn't mad. She wanted to help.
DETAILS: Now you two have a 1-year-old son. What's it like being a father?
Wes Bentley: I feel so aware of everything—for his sake. Babies are all emotions, so I'm aware of reason because I have to protect him from his lack of reason. I'm aware of society, because I'm getting ready to send him off into it. And I'm aware of what I'm eating because I want to influence the way he eats. It's truly being alive.
DETAILS: Beyond the sobriety, it sounds like you've really embraced healthy living.
Wes Bentley: I play a lot of soccer, so a lot of it has to do with being game-ready. I actually started the program in my high school—found a coach, a conference, all that stuff. I didn't play in my twenties because I was partying. I'd be sitting there, high, going, "Oh man, I'm gonna play soccer one day." Luckily I did, and now I play as much as I can.