Rob Lowe's Son John Owen Says He's 'Eternally Grateful' for His Dad's Help in Getting Sober
“I'm eternally grateful to have supportive parents who were there for me in a moment when I needed help,” the actor told PEOPLE at the premiere of his new show Unstable
John Owen Lowe feels very lucky to always have his father's support.
The actor and son of Rob Lowe, 28, opened up about his sobriety journey and the crucial role his parents played in helping him with his addiction while chatting with PEOPLE at the Los Angeles premiere of his new Netflix show Unstable on Thursday evening.
"To be completely honest and serious about it, I'm eternally grateful to have supportive parents who were there for me in a moment when I needed help," he said.
"And I know a lot of people don't have that. And that makes me sad and also very grateful that I did, and I'll forever be grateful for that," John Owen added.
Related:Rob Lowe's Son John Owen Thought His Dad's Help Was 'Abrasive' During 'Lowest Points' of Addiction
Rob, 59, who stars in Unstable alongside his son, also spoke to PEOPLE about what it was like helping his child during his darkest time.
"I've learned so much in my 33 years of recovery," Rob explained. "But the number one thing I know is, until someone is ready, until they're ready — not until you're ready, until they're ready — it's not going to happen."
He continued: "So all you can do is try to keep the bumpers up so they don't make any really bad, tragic mistakes for themselves or anybody else, be there, support them, and when they're ready, you can show them the path."
"And when he was ready, that's what I did," Rob, who is also dad to son Matthew with wife Sheryl Berkoff, added.
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The duo's new show Unstable is all about a father-son relationship and focuses on Ellis Dragon, played by Rob, who is a "universally admired, eccentric, narcissist-adjacent biotech entrepreneur working to make the world a better place. He's also in emotional free-fall," according to Netflix.
His son Jackson Dragon, portrayed by John Owen, is the opposite of his dad, and the show, per Netflix, explores whether "Jackson [can] save Ellis and his company and salvage their estranged relationship while also doing what may actually be impossible: escaping the shadow of his larger-than-life father."
John Owen previously reflected on his sobriety journey — and how his addiction almost caused a rift between him and his father — earlier this month.
In an interview for Men's Health's April cover story, the father-son duo opened up about John Owen's alcohol abuse throughout his late teens and early college years.
"Many times I could have died. I really liked to push the limits of my body and numb out as much as I could," John Owen told the outlet. "It makes me sad to think about. There's a certain level of self-doubt, or uncomfortability with one's self. The more insecure I grew, the more aggressively I used — to medicate."
"I've been to many hospitals many times," he continued, adding that one of his closest childhood friends died of a fentanyl overdose. "I've been very lucky."
Related:Rob Lowe on His Wild Journey from Teen Idol to Sober Family Man: 'I'm Grateful for All of It'
Rob — who had gotten sober himself at age 26 after struggling with drugs and alcohol — knew recovery took hard work.
He and wife Berkoff decided to do whatever they could to help their son, offering counselors, doctors, rehab and more to John Owen.
"When I was at my lowest points, my parents were throwing their lifeline of recovery at me in a way that I was like, Ahhh, get away! It's abrasive," John Owen explained. "It's like I was drowning and they were slamming me on the head with the life raft. Because my feelings were that I didn't matter, and a lot of that stemmed from having the dad that I had."
"Once I was treated as if my voice and opinion were valid, I was able to access a part of me that was scared and hiding," he continued. "Finally the thing that worked was when they said, 'We love you and we're scared.' "
RELATED VIDEO: Rob Lowe Says His Family Is "The Thing I'm Most Proud Of"
Now, John Owen is five years sober and told Men's Health that he treats his body and mind like someone who feels lucky to still have both. He also credits his dad for teaching him how to stay on top of his health.
"Mostly, it's just a mindset," John Owen said. "I feel like he's been serious about his health since I can remember, and so he has helped me be serious about mine."
John Owen had previously opened up about his father while chatting with PEOPLE in early 2022.
"When you consider what he went through in his 20s, his meteoric rise and some turbulence, and being in the public eye for decades ... To come out a family man, a really, really good father, a really, really strong husband, and just a fun, kind guy to be around, that's the day-to-day example he sets," John Owen said at the time.
He added, "On the most personal level possible, when I was struggling with addiction, he was always there for me. I credit that with being one, if not the main, reason that I'm sober and living a healthy lifestyle."
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