NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - "I was a slave to heroin, cocaine and alcohol. I could not keep a needle out of my arm," said Chris.
It's hard to imagine how this kind of a sentence can end well, but Chris finds a way and we'll come back to it later.
At just 13 years old, the demon of an addiction made Chris one of the tens of millions of Americans in a continuing struggle with alcohol and drug use.
With no hope in sight, a total stranger would utter the words in passing, that would give him new life.
"One day a random person told me if I got sober i could have a beautiful life and a light went on that I too could have a beautiful life," said Chris.
Chris seized on that moment, and has made a beautiful life. Sober 5-and-a-half years, he went through the 12 steps and then some.
He's strong, but regression is a constant fear. One of his tools to prevent it, an app called, Loosid.
Loosid has built a social network for those who prefer a sober lifestyle.
Chris, who spent years hiding, has found a community he never realized he belonged to. He now offers support for those seeking recovery.
The app also connects people thru events, dating and travel.
Loosid isn't the first use of tech to help in this fight. There are dozens of programs and apps before them, many have come and gone. Experts say the key here is the realization it can be useful as an extra layer of help but it's no substitute for getting help in person.
"Ultimately, the goal is individual one-on-one connection and to think an app is same as in-person is unrealistic," said Fred Muench, President, Center for Addiction.