LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Cole Watts is now 10 years sober, but during his time battling addiction, he dabbled in various types of drugs, including fentanyl.
"I used for a while and it got progressively worse," Watts said.
Today, Watts is program director of Stages Recovery, but he is also recovering from his battle with addiction.
"I was really young when I started for the first time, he said. "I tried marijuana and alcohol for the first time when I was 13."
He says he experimented with whatever he could get his hands on.
"It's literally like a snow going down the mountain that I didn't know I couldn't control," he says.
Watts describes how his nine-year battle with addiction began.
"Some people are able to have that one drink and then put it down," he explains. "Whereas something different happened in my brain and it clicked. The first time I had a drink, I'm in recovery myself, so when I had a drink, something happened."
But, it was not just alcohol. Watts said he tried a variety of different drugs to get high.
"I did fentanyl a couple of times," he said. "I was a pretty non-discriminate drug user. So, whatever I could use, I was going to give it a shot, for sure."
Fentanyl, Watts says, is dangerous because of how strong it is.
"Fentanyl is closer to heroin than it is to hydrocodone or some of the other pain reliever pills that you get prescribed, just because of its potency," he tells us.
After several years of battling addiction, Watts got arrested and started to turn his life around.
"I got clean at 22," he says.
Watts says he owes a huge thank you to the State of Texas for helping him on his road to recovery, and now, he's working to help others who are going through the same struggles he once did.
Now, he is the program director at Stages Recovery. Watts says he and his team not only help adults combat addiction, but they also have a program for teens, too.
"All of a sudden, I look back and man, look at where I'm at now," he says. "It's been a really cool thing and I just, as I went, I just can't get enough of this."