He’s struggled with addiction in the past. But Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino went into Jersey Shore: Family Vacation intent on staying sober.

Mike, 35, got treatment for a prescription medication problem in 2012, and while he now says he’s been clean for more than two years, it’s an ongoing battle.

mike the situation

“It was definitely an adjustment,” Mike says of being sober while living in a Jersey Shore house.

When he started filming the new Jersey Shore, re-entering the club scene “was like sensory overload,” Mike tells Life & Style. “But I had planned correctly. I had a very strong foundation.”

That support system includes his fiancée, Lauren Pesce, as well as Mike’s castmates. “[They were] very protective of me when I was down there in Miami,” he tells Life & Style. “I’m very blessed and grateful to be able to go down there and remain sober the whole time and show other people that change is possible.”