Conversation in Recovery: Mandy

Name: Mandy Manners
Age: 38
Location: UK/France
Recovery Date: August 17, 2017
Recovering From: Problem Drinking
About Mandy: I am a writer, speaker and podcast host on Sobriety. I am also a mum of two. I am training to be a recovery/life coach.
Instagram: @mandy_lovesober @lovesoberpodcast
Facebook: Love sober (there is also a women-only secret Facebook group — those who want to join can send Mandy a DM)
Website: Love Sober

Q. Before you entered recovery, what did you think the “thing” you were addicted to gave you, did for you, etc.?

A. A personality.

Q. Now that you are in recovery, what have you learned about that “thing?”

A. That I am so much more than a party girl, that I have integrity, values and skills, and something to contribute to the world.

Q. How are you recovering (e.g., 12-step program, rehab, counseling, on your own, etc.)?

A. I have a therapist, and through online peer support. Love Sober/She Recovers/The Unruffled/Soberistas

Q. In recovery, how do you give yourself what you thought that “thing” provided?

A. By helping others and joining groups and being sober social.

Q. What was your “rock bottom” or “breaking point” when you realized you needed to change?

A. After a burn out at work, and a nervous breakdown, I had worked really hard at getting my mental health on course, and my happiness, and I realised I was still using alcohol to change my mood, I spent a lot of time thinking about drinking, or not drinking. I realised I would never feel truly free if I kept on drinking, so I decided to stop.

Q. What has been the hardest part of recovery so far?

A. Well I started drinking again after a year, so I felt I had broken my trust with my online support, and felt very alone, luckily I joined Instagram and started to reconnect with people and to be able to flip myself back into a positive mind frame about living free from alcohol.

Q. What about recovery has been easier than you had anticipated? 

A. Parenting! I had an idea how much my hangovers and fatigue was impacting on my parenting, but not to how much extent. I am so much more patient and fun now.

Q. What has helped you the most in recovery?

A. Meeting other sober women.

Q. Who has helped you the most in recovery?

A. My Sober BFF Kate Baily who I do the podcast with.

Q. What has been the biggest surprise about recovery?

A. How transformative it has been, I thought I would just give up alcohol. I didn’t realise it would bring me back to my core values, that it would take me on a path of self development or that I would regain my creativity.

Q. What role has family played in your recovery?

A. Not much, they didn’t really understand at the beginning, now they are supportive but we don’t really talk about it that much.

Q. Knowing what you do now, what would you tell your pre-recovery self about recovery?

A. That it will be the biggest positive shift that you can do for yourself.

Q. What would you say to someone who is thinking about recovery?

A. There will never be the perfect time, don’t wait, just start and take one day at a time.

If there is anything else you want to add, please do …

Reach out to people in the sober community, we thrive together.

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