When DJ AM (Adam Michael Goldstein) was a child, his father verbally abused him, which Goldstein called “unbelievably cruel.” His father abused drugs and was secretly a homosexual.
Goldstein started deejaying at 20. During his early 20s, Goldstein battled an addiction to drugs, specifically crack cocaine. At one point, he attempted suicide, but was unsuccessful when the gun did not go off. Shortly thereafter, he became sober, began attending AA meetings, and dedicated himself to working as a DJ. After getting clean, DJ AM was sober for more than 11 years and was held up as a positive example for the recovery process.
He began dating socialite Nicole Richie in 2003 and announced their engagement in February, 2005. However, the couple broke up in late 2006.