Wallabies and Reds prop James Slipper has addressed his drugs-related ban from rugby ahead of his return to the field.
Slipper was banned for two months and fined NZ$29,970 on May 24 after twice testing positive for cocaine.
The former Reds captain said the suspension forced him to have a good look at himself, and a weight was lifted off his shoulders once he opened up about his struggles to his parents.
"At the time, I didn't see a healthy ending there for a bit," Slipper said.
"I'm not all fixed as they say, but I'm working hard and seeing the professionals - and going well. I'm as happy as I've been in a long time."
Slipper was remorseful for his "bad decisions" and had no objections to the suspension he had to serve.
The 29-year-old will make his return to rugby this weekend as part of an Australian Super rugby selection team to face the Wallabies in preparation for the Rugby Championship.
The 86-test Wallaby said he wanted to provide a good example for people going through their own struggles and was thankful for the opportunity to get back onto the pitch.
"I want to be a positive outcome, that's always been in the back of my head, once I get through the hard bit, to be a positive influence on someone.
"I think it would be important for me to do that. I'm living proof that you make bad decisions, you get penalised, but you can stop that from happening if you're open and honest and speak out a bit earlier."