(GERMANY OUT) Scott Stapp, Singer, USA, performs on April 27, 2014, at C-Club, Berlin, Germany  (Photo by Engelke/ullstein bi
Engelke/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Creed’s Scott Stapp has struggled with depression, substance abuse, and suicide attempts in his two decades in the public eye. Today the 41-year-old singer reveals to People that he has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, is in recovery, and feels “lucky to be alive.”

Here’s Stapp’s account of the recent turmoil that finally led to medical attention:

"I had a psychotic break that was brought on by alcohol and drug abuse. I was hallucinating. I drove around the United States for a month, following an angel that I saw on the hood of my car. In my delusional thinking, I thought my family was involved in ISIS, and that millions of dollars had been taken from me to support terrorism. All of it was nonsense. I was out of my mind."

In 2013, Stapp spoke to Fuse about “Slow Suicide,” the single from his solo album Proof of Life, and its autobiographical origins: 

“I had to call it for what it was and what I was doing to myself: slowly killing myself and not dealing with things in my life appropriately. … I was living my life headed straight for the grave. I should’ve been in that grave. This is all part of my journey to recovery.”

Now Stapp says his sobriety is his top priority; he’s in a 12-step program, has a sponsor, and is taking medication. “It’s not a curse,” he says of his bipolar disorder. “It’s actually been a gift in my life, because it’s definitely impacted everything that I’ve ever done as an artist.”

Below, see a clip of People’s candid conversation with Stapp and his wife of nine years, Jaclyn, with whom he has two young children. Jaclyn filed for divorce six months ago; the two have since reconciled and are moving forward as a couple.