It’s to meet our July Specialist Spotlight Coach! We’re excited to introduce you to Alyson, recovery coach and founder of the Sober Mom Tribe. The Sober Mom Tribe is a judgment-free zone for mothers who are sober, sober curious or struggling with sobriety to come together and share their successes, slip-ups and chat about motherhood. Get to know Alyson below!
Tell us about yourself.
I’m a 35 year old single mom to an 8 year old son who’s super active in the soccer community. When I’m not working, I’m carting him around to practices, games and tournaments. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I had tried to get sober 2 times within a 3 year span. Both times I went back to drinking and I thought I could moderate. What started out as one glass of wine quickly escalated to two then three. Towards the end of my drinking days I was drinking morning until night. I hit my “rock bottom” on November 14, 2016 when I couldn’t even bring my son to school. I felt like I was going crazy and that was the day I went to a detox facility in Connecticut, gulped my last sip of wine, and haven’t looked back.
What inspired you to become a recovery coach?
When I first got out of detox I had a therapist who I still go to this day. I absolutely adore her and she has helped me so much, but I wanted to talk to someone who had experienced addiction firsthand. Someone who could provide me with different paths to recovery, instead of just being told to go to AA. That and I missed out on an opportunity in the business development field, so I thought it was the sign I needed to change career paths and follow something I was passionate about.
Do you have a personal philosophy that guides your work as a recovery coach?
My coaching philosophy stems from scientific research. There is nothing wrong with you because you’ve gotten into the vicious cycle of addiction or created a habit loop that is hard to break. I think it is key to eliminating the shame that surfaces. Using research studies helps people see that. On a similar note, if you have a slip-up I help my clients see it as a lesson and not a failure. The only time we fail is when we give up, so no giving up allowed!
What has been the most rewarding part of being a recovery coach?
When my clients realize their worth and that alcohol was holding them back from being their authentic self. Being able to guide them from one of the lowest points in their life to achieving their goal of sobriety is a feeling I can’t even describe. I’ve always heard helping others helps yourself, and it couldn’t be more accurate. Their persistence and honesty keeps me going on my journey as well.
What led you to brand yourself as the Sober Mom Coach?
In my recovery journey, I hadn’t found anyone who was focusing on helping mother’s struggling with addiction. Obviously there are recovery coaches out there that help mothers, but I wanted that to be my niche. Motherhood alone is hard enough. Add trying to get sober on top of that and it can get so overwhelming. Having a coach by your side to support you is beneficial to mothers who don’t have a lot of extra time to go to meetings, have a busy work schedule, or don’t feel comfortable bringing their children to meetings.
How did you decide to launch the Sober Mom Tribe?
Sober Mom Tribe was created after being a guest on A Sober Girl’s Guide Podcast. I realized there needs to be more of a sober mom presence on social media. So I made a platform that is a judgment free zone for mother's to come together, share their stories, and gain some knowledge from one another. There were more of us out there than I had ever imagined. Moms thinking about getting sober, moms having a hard time staying sober, or moms looking for community and connection was and still is a huge need. It is one thing being sober, but it's a whole other level being sober AND a mom with the "mommy wine" culture being promoted everywhere you turn. From shirts and coffee mugs to memes it can be hard for a sober mom to feel like they belong. You do belong and you are definitely not alone.
How has the Sober Mom Tribe changed your life?
Sober Mom Tribe will officially be a year old on July 14, 2019 and every day I’m so incredibly grateful to all the mothers who are sharing their story and breaking the stigma of addiction. Sober Mom Tribe has already exceeded all my expectations and I know it will continue to do so. This community that I’ve created is like no other. The support these women give to one another is so genuine and needed in a time that mental health and substance use disorders are at an all time high.
What piece of advice would you give to someone seeking help?
Explore ALL avenues to recovery. Whether it’s AA/NA, Celebrate Recovery, Refuge Recovery, Women for Sobriety, online support groups, therapy, or coaching. We are so lucky to live in a time where there are so many options available to fit what works for you.