Working moms are drinking to cope with the combined demands of work and motherhood.

It’s not a new idea.

Popular culture has long pushed the idea that working moms should drink to cope with the stress of modern life.

Picture this scene: A mom walks in the door after she picks up her kids at daycare after a long day of work. Her kids are tired and hungry. And the email app on her phone keeps pinging with new messages even though she left the office an hour ago. 

She sighs and pours a big glass of wine as she tries to figure out what to make for dinner. 

By the time dinner is on the table she’s on glass number 2. By the time the kids are in bed she’s debating jumping back on the computer or sitting down on the couch with glass number 3 (or maybe it’s number 4).  

She’s exhausted but thinks the wine helps her relax. Wine makes her feel like she has some reward at the end of the day before she starts it all again tomorrow. 

It’s a scene you can probably visualize because it’s happening in households all across the country, on TVs, movies and memes. 

In her book Forget “Having It All”: How America Messed Up Motherhood—and How to Fix It

Amy Westervelt notes, “We still ask women to work like they don’t have kids and parent like they don’t work.”

It’s true. There is a motherhood penalty at work. Researchers at Harvard have found that “Mothers suffer a penalty relative to non-mothers and men in the form of lower perceived competence and commitment, higher professional expectations, lower likelihood of hiring and promotion, and lower recommended salaries. This evidence implies that being a mother leads to discrimination in the workplace.”

Mother’s feel that they’re not doing enough in the workplace when they leave the office to pick up the kids from childcare, when they try to get to a sports game, or when they have to block off time for a child’s dentist or doctor appointment. 

And mother’s feel guilty that they’re not spending “enough” time with their children. Or volunteering at school. Or going on field trips. Or making homemade cookies. Or whatever else the perfect Pinterest mom would do. 

It’s no wonder working moms are drinking to cope. 

Opening a bottle of wine or sipping a cocktail can feel like a reminder of a time before kids, when life was less stressful and busy. And it’s one of the only things that we can tap into while multitasking at home, while working at night or while playing Candyland or Legos. 

The problem is that while we’ve been told by society and the media and each other that drinking will help us transition from work to home, relax and cope with the second shift, it actually increases anxiety and depression, ruins your sleep and makes work and motherhood harder. 

When I was climbing the corporate ladder with two young kids I thought that wine was the glue holding me together. It was my favorite reward at the end of a long day. 

But when I woke up at 3am with a racing mind and a pounding heart, when I put on my eyeliner in the morning and saw my bloodshot eyes, when I took my daughter to daycare with a headache and a hangover and ran into work feeling completely exhausted, it was hard to deny that drinking was actually making me more anxious and less able to manage our responsibilities. 

Ann Dowsett Johnston described wine as “the modern woman’s steroid” in her book Drink: The Intimate Relationship Between Women and Alcohol, and the popularity of “wine mom culture” has just amplified the message that wine is the solution to modern parenting. There are literally notebooks on with cover art that says “Wine Is To Women As Duct Tape Is To Men – It Fixes Everything.

We don’t need a drink.

Instead a Forbes survey found that working mothers need three things: flexibility, good benefits and a supportive boss.  The article, citing an Indeed survey, notes that 90% of moms who work full-time say it was challenging to be successful at both work and at home. And the answer isn’t always to go part-time. The survey noted that “dropping to part-time work doesn’t help and may even hurt: 67% of moms who work part-time and 54% of moms who work full-time think juggling part-time work is more challenging than full-time.”

Drinking doesn’t help working moms cope with life. We don’t need wine. We need flexibility as to when they arrive at the office, help from partners for the morning routine with kids, a supportive boss that encourages them to attend their child’s events, and a team atmosphere where colleagues can take up some of the workload at critical times.   

It’s easy to get into the habit of drinking as a working mom. I drank a bottle of wine, most nights of the week, for years as I climbed the corporate ladder.

And so did my guest today, Heather Lowe. 

Heather is the founder of @ditchedthedrink, a wellness company dedicated to helping professionals move away from alcohol and towards their highest self. She fell into the same trap so many working mothers do, increasingly relying on alcohol as a way to cope with the pressures of work and motherhood. She’s here to share the tools she used to pull herself out of the wine mom world and into an alcohol-free life. 

Tune in to hear Casey and Heather discuss:

  • Why working moms are drinking to cope with life

  • How alcohol can fuel over-functioning and high-achieving
  • What happens when the drinking culture in the working world combines with the drinking culture in the momming world
  • The three levels of energy women cycle through when we’re drinking, and why it’s exhausting
  • What it’s like when to go through early sobriety as a busy working mom 
  • Why to lower the bar in early sobriety
  • The mental load mothers carry and tools to cope with stress
  • What might change in your marriage when you stop drinking 

Resources Mentioned in the Episode

Ep. 39: Tired Of Thinking About Drinking With Belle Robertson (My Sober Coach)

Research related to work, motherhood and alcohol

Working Mothers Drink More In Lockdown | Scoop News

How Crushing Mental Load Drives Women to Drink | The Temper

Working Mothers Consuming More Alcohol   

Can We Address the Real Reasons Moms Are Drinking More, Please?

Are working mothers driven to drink?

Who Is a Wine Mom? – The Atlantic

Forget “Having It All”: How America Messed Up Motherhood–and How to Fix It

How to be a (Good-Enough) Working Mom – Guides – The New York Times   

The Motherhood Penalty And Gender Pay Gap

Forbes: What working moms want and need 

What Is The Mental Load? Women’s Invisible Labor | mindbodygreen 

Ready to drink less + live more?

If you’re ready to change your relationship with alcohol join The Sobriety Starter Kit

It’s my signature sober coaching course for busy women to help you drink less + live more. 

To enroll go to

Grab the  Free 30-Day Guide To Quitting Drinking, 30 Tips For Your First Month Alcohol-Free

Connect with Heather Lowe

Heather Lowe is the Founder of Ditched the Drink, a wellness company dedicated to helping professionals move away from alcohol and towards their highest selves. 

Heather is a Certified Professional Life and Recovery Coach, Certified Addiction Awareness Facilitator, and the Director of Marketing Consumer Products for the International Center of Addiction Recovery Education (ICARE). Driven by her education as a Bachelor of Social Work and a Professional of Human Resources Heather provides content, knowledge, coaching, and education to individuals and organizations seeking to be more alcohol free.

Heather lives in Chicago’s western suburbs as a proud girl mom to two teenage daughters, Lily and Charlotte, her husband Darin of 20+ years, and their adorable black and white cocker spaniel, Rocky. Heather is a voracious reader, a new-ish hiker, and a seasoned yogi. 

Ditched the Drink offers Becoming 1:1 Coaching, INSIDER Monthly Membership, and Jumpstart 6 week Digital Class. For more visit

Follow Ditched The Drink on IG, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest @ditchedthedrink

Connect with Casey

Take a screenshot of your favorite episode, post it on your Instagram and tag me @caseymdavidson and tell me your biggest takeaway!

Want to read the full transcript of this podcast episode? Scroll down on this page.


Are you looking for the best sobriety podcast for women? The Hello Someday Podcast was created specifically for sober curious women and gray area drinkers ready to stop drinking, drink less and change their relationship with alcohol.

Host Casey McGuire Davidson, a certified life and sobriety coach and creator of The 30-Day Guide to Quitting Drinking and The Sobriety Starter Kit Sober Coaching Course, brings together her experience of quitting drinking while navigating work and motherhood, along with the voices of experts in personal development, self-care, addiction and recovery and self-improvement. 

Whether you know you want to stop drinking and live an alcohol-free life, are sober curious, or are in recovery this is the best sobriety podcast for you.

A Top 100 Mental Health Podcast, ranked in the top 1% of podcasts globally, The Hello Someday Podcast is the best sobriety podcast for women.

In each episode Casey will share the tried and true secrets of how to drink less and live more. 

Learn how to let go of alcohol as a coping mechanism, how to shift your mindset about sobriety and change your drinking habits, how to create healthy routines to cope with anxiety, people pleasing and perfectionism, the importance of self-care in early sobriety, and why you don’t need to be an alcoholic to live an alcohol-free life. 

Be sure to grab the Free 30-Day Guide To Quitting Drinking right here.

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Working Moms Are Drinking To Cope – And It’s Not Helping with Heather Lowe


drinking, cope, alcohol, husband, life, sober, wine, home, kids, day, feel, week, job, people, night, mom, friends, dinner, wanted, bottle, years

SPEAKERS: Casey McGuire Davidson + Heather Lowe


Welcome to the Hello Someday Podcast, the podcast for busy women who are ready to drink less and live more. I’m Casey McGuire Davidson, ex-red wine girl turned life coach helping women create lives they love without alcohol. But it wasn’t that long ago that I was anxious, overwhelmed, and drinking a bottle of wine and night to unwind. I thought that wine was the glue, holding my life together, helping me cope with my kids, my stressful job and my busy life. I didn’t realize that my love affair with drinking was making me more anxious and less able to manage my responsibilities.

In this podcast, my goal is to teach you the tried and true secrets of creating and living a life you don’t want to escape from.

Each week, I’ll bring you tools, lessons and conversations to help you drink less and live more. I’ll teach you how to navigate our drinking obsessed culture without a buzz, how to sit with your emotions when you’re lonely or angry, frustrated or overwhelmed, how to self soothe without a drink, and how to turn the decision to stop drinking from your worst case scenario to the best decision of your life.

I am so glad you’re here. Now let’s get started.

Hi there. Welcome to this episode of The Hello Someday podcast, I am really excited because we are talking about working moms. And if drinking helps working moms cope with life. I know that I thought I did. I thought that wine was the glue holding me together as I went to my job and dealt with that and then came home to two young kids for years.


And my guest is Heather Lowe. And she had the same experience. So, Heather is the Founder of Ditch The Drink, a wellness company dedicated to helping professionals move away from alcohol and towards their highest self. Heather is a Certified Professional Life and Recovery Coach, a Certified Addictions Awareness Facilitator, and the Director of Marketing of Consumer Products for the International Center of Addiction Recovery Education, driven by higher education as a Bachelor of Social Work, and a Professional in Human Resources. Heather provides content, knowledge, coaching and education to individuals and organizations seeking to be more alcohol free. So Heather, welcome.



Thank you. It’s such a mouthful to read all that I’m so happy to be here, Casey to have this important conversation with you.


Casey McGuire Davidson  02:43

Yeah, I’m excited to and I know that for years, I was always a big drinker. And you know, sort of drank every night a week. But that really took off when my son was born when I became a working mom, because all of the things I used to be able to do to kind of take care of myself mentally and physically after my job sort of went away. So, I was working, you know, with demanding bosses and lots of deliverables until 5:30. Whereas, normally, I’d work till seven, and then leaving and trying to race home to get my son before daycare closed. And then after he went to bed jumping back on email to try to finish everything up. And I did a lot of that while having a bottle of red wine open and constantly refilling it.



Yeah, absolutely. I agree. You were working your first shift at your job, your second shift at home. And then third shift back at your job from home. I always say alcohol actually fueled my over functioning.



Oh, tell me about that. That’s super interesting.



Yeah, I mean, I was I’m over function or to begin with a perfectionist and high achiever Enneagram.


Casey McGuire Davidson  03:58

Three, need to. I’m an Enneagram. Three is well, first, we are everything, we don’t need any help. We’ve got it all. It’s done. It’s done. Right. It’s done perfectly. We don’t know how to delegate or help and, and all that stuff. So, it really does change when you have kids.



And our sense of worth is from being productive and achieving. And that’s how we how we think that we’re loved and succeeded and valued and all that good stuff.



Exactly. Yeah. What we can produce and how efficiently we can produce it all kind of fit along with that, like for me, because I could do my work and pour my wine and get it all done. And it was like as if wine was restorative or restful or made it more fun or something. And especially when the kids are young. That’s Groundhog Day. bath time dinnertime bedtime, right?


Casey McGuire Davidson  04:54

Yeah, I used to always say that I couldn’t multitask when I was drinking as opposed To all the other things, I used to do to have fun and to connect with people and to relax. I mean, before kids, I still worked a ton, and I definitely drank. But I also went to the gym and took guitar lessons and got together with girlfriends for walks. And once I had my son, it was lovely and amazing, but also incredibly draining and really stressful. Like, he would get an ear infection. And my husband and I would be staring at each other, like, basically competing for who had the busiest day and who couldn’t leave work. You know what I mean? Yeah, absolutely.



So, I can totally relate to that. I was in a situation where, okay, prior to well, okay, so I drink through high school, I drink through college, I met my husband and a bar, you know, very regular story. We moved from Wisconsin to Chicago area, as young urban professionals, we worked at it, we both worked at this huge company doing HR work. And it was almost like the college after college, because it was. They hired all new grads, so we made new friends in the area. Now we had a little more money than we did in college, because we were working. So, we went to happy hours and cubs games and everything with our work people. So, drinking was like sort of part of the job or it was hosted by the company and all that good stuff. I had a couple job changes, but always like a beer cart on Fridays or, and then I was in sales. And I was often the only female and a lot of sales teams at drinking definitely felt like part of those jobs, too, with networking and dinners, and all these different events.


When I had children, the change was, I worked part time. So, I’ll be at home with the kids and working. And it was the best of both worlds. And a lot of ways it was a choice my husband and I make either of us could be home and either of us could work. We were both perfectly capable of doing both. But this is how we decided to do it. So, my husband traveled a lot. And gently. And drinking he was in sales; drinking was part of his job too. So, he was having private concerts, and going to Vegas and just having the best time and moving up and up and up in his career. And I was home, working part time and then being with the kids part time feeling like I wasn’t advancing in my career, and I wasn’t fully home with my kids. And I was lonely. I was super lonely.


Casey McGuire Davidson  07:34

Were you resentful to I know we’re not supposed to say that is like, I think I was jealous. But I wasn’t going to give up my time with the kids that time was precious when they were little. I wanted to be the one to do that, in all honesty, as over funktioner that I was the one to do it best and do it right? Yes, certainly the ones that keep the cleanest house and do the cutest crafts dress the kids in the right clothes and all that stuff, right? Feed them the healthiest food and all that stuff that mattered to me. So, I wanted to be a stellar mom, but I also had dreams of my own. The difference was, I didn’t have a social life then because I was either with the kids or I was at work. So, I wanted a happy hour at work because it led me off the hook to go from work to daycare pickup.


Yeah, jazz, you know, sometimes there’s an overwhelming feeling that you’re staring at that hole on night, and you’re not done with your work, right. So, if I could say, your work, somebody else could take that. So, it looks for reasons to say.


Casey McGuire Davidson  08:36

Yeah, and you know, I’ve seen various articles, and I’ll link to them in the show notes of this. But you know, there have been studies that say that working mothers laborer an average of 14 hours a day, and it’s the equivalent of two and a half full time jobs. You know, one of the issues that I found as well was, once I was a mom, I felt like I couldn’t take any days off, including if I was sick or just exhausted, because I had to save those for when my kids needed me. My son, you know, finally got ear tubes. And this, this sounds dumb, but at the time, it was really real. He got eight ear infections in his first year and fevers and like basically pinkeye every time. And what that meant was literally every month, I was getting a phone call that he had 100 degree fever and needed to be picked up and he was this little baby and couldn’t go back to school for, you know, 24 hours after he got the drops. I mean, it was really, really stressful at the time and it was also stressful on my marriage.



Yeah, that sounds so stressful. And you are fighting who’s going to take off for me it was like, Well, I’m taking a step back. So, it’s always me. Even if I have something important to do. It’s going to be me because I’m not as important So my husband and his big job, right?


Casey McGuire Davidson  10:02

I know. And I think that when we have kids and I’m, I’m speaking for myself, regardless of how involved your husband is because my husband also, I mean, I’m lucky, he was very involved. But I felt like my life changed 80%. I mean, partially because I was on maternity leave for 12 weeks, but his life changed like 20%. And suddenly, you know, if I got any time to myself, I would get, oh, I got to go to the gym for an hour. Whereas he’d go fly fishing, and it’d be eight hours at a time or, or coach a baseball game and be gone all day, and I was resentful. I was just really pissed off, that my life had shrunk so much. And he still seemed to be able to do most of what he wanted to do. And I had to basically ask permission as a 32 year old high achieving woman, you know, to have to ask if you can go do some basic stuff was, it was sort of humbling, but it also pissed me off.

Casey McGuire Davidson 

Hi there. If you’re listening to this episode, and have been trying to take a break from drinking, but keep starting and stopping and starting again, I want to invite you to take a look at my on demand coaching course, The Sobriety Starter Kit.


The Sobriety Starter Kit is an online self study sober coaching course that will help you quit drinking and build a life you love without alcohol without white knuckling it or hating the process. The course includes the exact step by step coaching framework I work through with my private coaching clients, but at a much more affordable price than one on one coaching. And the sobriety starter kit is ready, waiting and available to support you anytime you need it. And when it fits into your schedule. You don’t need to work your life around group meetings or classes at a specific day or time.

This course is not a 30 day challenge, or a one day at a time approach. Instead, it’s a step by step formula for changing your relationship with alcohol. The course will help you turn the decision to stop drinking, from your worst case scenario to the best decision of your life.

You will sleep better and have more energy, you’ll look better and feel better. You’ll have more patience and less anxiety. And with my approach, you won’t feel deprived or isolated in the process. So if you’re interested in learning more about all the details, please go to You can start at any time and I would love to see you in the course 



Yeah, absolutely. I had tons of anger and resentment as well. And sometimes going out was just like when the babies were little, and I was breastfeeding going to target by myself to buy baby stuff. It was a responsibility and a caretaking duty for somebody else. I just wanted to go alone for a minute. I mean, I remember after my first daughter was born, my first night out, I hadn’t drink for nine months or whatever. And I’m a party girl. I was what I really what my goal was with kids was to keep my life exactly the same. And just like carrying around a baby like a purse like an accessory. Like I had no idea my life was actually going to change forever, completely different. So, I just wanted to keep everything as it was. So, after I had my first daughter, it was less than a month, and it was St. Patrick’s Day. And I want it to grow. And I want it to party. And I had this situation which women will hate me for. But I had a better body after I had a baby than I did before. So, I was ready to fly. Definitely hate you for that.



Like yeah, I know, most people do. And I hate myself too. I get it. It was it’s like a rare thing where something happens, but I was ready to go. So, I go out. And I drink as much green beer as I possibly can with a friend and the matter of probably like 90 minutes, my boobs are trying to go home, I’m going to be leaking, I have to go back to my baby. You know what I mean? It just came to a very abrupt ending. And I just saw like, how my life was never going to be the same. Even though that was my goal. I was never going to be who I was. Before a baby, I would always worry about a baby. My body was literally attached to my child. And I was a different personnel. And I had to shift my priorities. So, I tried to drink with the kids playdates with, right, like so I can have a social life too. And I still had my needs for grown up conversation and friendships. And to be honest, to party and to drink. I wanted to do those things. Because I want to be a person, not just a mom. Right? Yeah. So, I looked for opportunities to do that. Yeah.


Casey McGuire Davidson  13:14

And I think that, you know, being in the working world, there’s, there are two factors that I’ve seen, both among myself, and a lot of the women, I work with our high achieving working moms, who also drink quite a bit, right. So, I think part of it is a feeling of continuing to be empowered to kind of be a screw up to adulting. And having all this responsibility on your shoulders. Part of it is the idea that I think we have so much on our plate, we’re doing all the things and always trying to race to, to stay at work as late as you can, and then get to get daycare as quickly as possible. And I used it to downshift really quickly. At the same time. Like, oh my God, I’ve only got two hours to take care of myself, whatever that means. I’m going to drink because it puts me in that fuzzy buzzy space really quickly. And then the third thing that I found is I also felt like drinking was part of how I bonded with colleagues. And it was part of, you know, going out to happy hour going on business trips. We would go to dinner and drink a lot, right? I know people in sales have a lot of those working dinners as well. We used to have people come in from New York, and we always went out to parties and we, you know, wanting to entertain them. And so, it was also this idea that by drinking, I was still one of the people at work a lot of the people I worked with Were either men, or they didn’t have kids.



So relatable. Absolutely. I drink to be cut. Well, first of all, a loud inner critic, me and my clients and you, I’m guessing, have a very loud inner critic that no matter what you’re doing, you’re not doing it good enough, you’re not doing it fast enough, you’re not earning enough, there could always be more right? Enough is never enough for some high achieving people like me and you, and the people listening to this podcast right now. So, pouring alcohol on that feels good. It feels good to shut up that inner critic a little bit and feel like everything’s okay. Also, I think I was drinking at resentment of my husband, let’s say, I mean, I thought I’d love to think the problem was, I’d rather the problem be him than alcohol, because I really didn’t want to get rid of alcohol. But it also helped me, I didn’t want to address anything, right. I didn’t have words or communication or empowerment for what was happening to me. I mean, he was also working really hard. So, I could work part time and be home part time, which is something I was really grateful for. I didn’t want to be a spoiled brat to complain about all the good work he was doing in the world, right. But yeah, I was probably jealous and mad and more like, I wanted that for him. But I wanted that for myself, too. And maybe I was mad at him for getting other mad at him for not having the domestic responsibilities that I had, that are never over laundry doesn’t end. And instead of addressing those things, I could just pour alcohol on it. Make myself a little bit happier. Yeah, and not confront anything with him. And pretend like everything was okay.


Casey McGuire Davidson  16:44

Oh, my gosh, I have to say that when I stopped drinking I and I’ve actually recorded this sort of did diary of my first 100 days without alcohol through the emails I wrote to my coach every day, because I kind of was like, hey, it’s day eight, hey, it’s day 14, here’s what’s going on. And the amount of times I mentioned laundry in there, I was like, Oh, my God, it’s going to be the most boring thing ever. But you work all week. And, you know, you’re in early sobriety, and all the chores you do. Alcohol was sort of the reward you got at the end of the day. And you know, I had an eight year old and a two year old, so apparently, I did a crapload of laundry in those days. Yeah. But monotonous, and not terribly rewarding. And, you know, I feel like I sound not very nice right now. But I’m just trying to be honest about the fact that we’re not supposed to ever say anything negative about becoming a mother, I mean, people come up to you and are like, Oh, my God, you know, they’re adorable. The years are, you know, the years are, the days are long, but the years are short, and they are adorable, and you do love them more than a thing. And you need a break that isn’t going to the office.



Absolutely. literally going to work with a break for me.


Casey McGuire Davidson  18:14

You got to pay close, you got to drive in the car by yourself for at least a little bit of time.



I was sitting in a train being a person out in the world without a baby attached to me. I frickin loved it. And I wanted it to last as long as it could. Right? I relate to that so much. So, my first year of sobriety, I also kept a diary. And what I tell everyone is like it’s full of Fu Fu and Fu, too. I mean, it’s not pretty. Yes, because that’s how I was feeling so angry and so resentful for having all this responsibility. When my youngest went to kindergarten, I left a job that had been so flexible for me, I actually worked part time and was also able to move up in my career. It was a woman owned company. It was incredibly supportive. But I was recruited for a bigger job, longer hours more responsibility, a team reporting to me when my little one went to kindergarten. And at the same time my dad passed away. So, I thought not taking this. I wasn’t going to let my dad’s passing be an excuse to not take a job and move forward in my career. So, I took this job, and it was full time, and it was bigger. And I broke my leg the first week on the job. It was like every trigger. No, no, no, it was yeah, it was a recipe for disaster. A Comedy of Errors. But it was the laundry that was getting me because I was burning the candle at both ends. At this time. You know, I was working there was early morning. Like thought leadership events. And then there was evening, client dinners and happy hours and I was doing everything. But I didn’t want to drink too much on the job. I didn’t want to be seen as you know, drunk or irresponsible. So, I would drink the regular amount, maybe like two to three glasses and I would come home from the event and actually drink for myself because I wanted to get my own fill. And then I would go to bed and wake up and early pump drag myself through the day and do this cycle over and over again. I was the first one up making lunches for my kids, you know, I looked like I had it all together, but inside, I was absolutely dying inside.


Casey McGuire Davidson  20:22

Well, and that’s the other thing I’ve seen. So, I do core energy coaching, which is sort of similar to Myers Briggs for the Enneagram. And basically, there’s seven levels of energy that we all cycle through. And there are a couple of levels that I feel like we live in when we’re drinking. The first is before we drink, which is level two, and you start with resentment and irritation and frustration. And this martyr this feeling right, so we drink at people, or even if it’s our reward, we drink because life is hard, because we have so little for ourselves, we deserve it, right? This is our one thing. And then when you wake up in the morning with a hangover, or having drank more than you wanted to, again, you’re in this level one energy of guilt, anxiety, regret, remorse, self-loathing, whatever it is for you, depending on the day, that that’s what I felt, you know, I would be like, What the fuck is wrong with me. Get your shit together. Like, that was the constant refrain in my head. But then as high achieving women, we kick into level three. And level three is a level of coping and responsibility and overcompensating right, so you’re so tired, but you couldn’t possibly take a nap. Because you blame yourself for drinking. I’m tired, because I drank too much. Or I don’t want anyone including my husband or myself to notice how much I’m drinking. Therefore, I will do absolutely everything else. So that you know, there’s nothing to see here. You know what I mean?



Yeah, so guilty. Yeah. So, guilty inside are our own behavior, that is a secret. And we don’t want anyone to know. And we’re secretly afraid that we’re depending on it too much. And also, that first sit every day is the best we felt all day. We’re not letting it go. Right.


Casey McGuire Davidson  22:21

Which of course it was, because we’re in withdrawal. And we’re totally addicted to it. Right. Yeah. I mean, it’s this vicious cycle. And I think that we tell ourselves that we have no willpower, or when we’re drinking, like what’s wrong with us, but looking back with some distance, I can’t believe how hard I was working and how I was like, basically trying to run this marathon with this ball and chain of drinking and hangovers tied to my ankle. I mean, if you’re drinking and working and motherhood, you are doing the hardest job imaginable. And also, you’re completely unaware that if you’ve removed the alcohol, the rest of your life would actually get way easier.



Oh, yes. I always say that everyone, it’s hard to get sober. For sure. It’s definitely really hard to get sober. But it’s hard to keep drinking. Yeah, it was getting so hard to cover up and clean it up and pretend and pretend like everything was okay. And to keep functioning at this level, when you feel like death all the time. And my mental health was crumbling.


Casey McGuire Davidson  23:37

I was so anxious. I felt like I couldn’t cope with life like any new request project thing, you know? Oh my God Spirit day at school. Like why the fuck do they have Spirit Day? You know, where it was like Crazy hair day and X and then Y and then teachers gifts. I was like, everything is going to break me. You know?



Yeah, yeah. Well, you didn’t have any resilience and neither did I. I actually had my first drink at 12 and used to immediately love dad was from Wisconsin. It was super normal. You don’t I mean, like everybody drinks and keep drink. Just drink. It’s super normal. Put your kids in a bar what? What have you that’s the culture there.


Casey McGuire Davidson  24:19

So, I took my 18 month old on a wine tasting weekend in Walla Walla, which is the big wine area in Washington State. With four other couples we rented out this whole Inn, and they all had babies too. And we went from winery to winery to winery with the kids’ toys. And we thought like, Oh, we’re the cool parents. I mean, it’s almost embarrassing looking back at it. But we’re like that you mentioned like, I don’t want my life to change, right? I still want to have fun and I don’t want my entire life to revolve around my kids. And at the same time looking back now I’m like, oh, Wow, that’s, that’s crazy to bring an 18 month old to like, wine bars for two entire days. I’m sure that was really fun for the baby. Oh, yeah. Some of them had dogs. So, you know, they got to run around.



I mean, you know, I didn’t. I mean, not to be a tuber, I could totally relate. But when my second baby was born, and then I was like, in a totally experienced mom, right? Yeah. And I was three days old. And I went to an outdoor concert venue. had wine brought homemade salsa fit, and my old jeans. Had my baby. Like, I just ,0.I thought I was a freaking amazing, perfect, like, I made a homemade salsa. I’m drinking a glass of wine. I’m getting my jeans. And I have a baby. Yeah, everyone was like, You’re incredible. And I was like, Yes, I know. That was exactly the feedback I wanted, right? Yeah.


Casey McGuire Davidson  25:49

And I see it like, it’s like, trying to reclaim some part of your identity. But also, just this deep denial about how important alcohol has become in our lives and how much we really wanted to hold on to it at the expense of actually taking care of our physical or mental health. We just wanted to check out and get our reward and basically, I wanted to be 27. Again.



Same. I just wanted to live there. Yeah, I didn’t want to actually address anything. I mean, it scared me so bad to think about my health or just think about addiction, or to think about this growing habit dependence. This thing I always had, but it was started to grow. And I knew it meant a lot. Most of the time it was socially acceptable. So, nobody knew my private struggle, right? Because again, I was having the right amount at work. And then coming home and having a bottle, like really drink, you know?


Yeah, I didn’t, I didn’t want to look at anything for real. I wanted to ignore it and feel better. And when they say like, a symptom of the problem is denying you the problem. Now if it’s like, oh, yeah, okay, I see it. I didn’t then, of course, but again, if I’m the first one every day, that confused my husband to do I have a problem because I’m not laying in bed hungover. I wouldn’t allow myself to do that. No matter how sick I was. I was driving the kids. I was carpooling days after I didn’t. I didn’t typically drink a drive, but like, having anxiety, panic attacks while driving scared for me and my life and what was happening to my body.


Casey McGuire Davidson  27:21

Yeah, I mean, I used to the, the lowest point for me of each day was I mean, I would get up and go downstairs to get the coffee, you know, early, of course. And if I had opened a second bottle of wine, I would hold it up and kind of see how much was left, like, was there three quarters left? Or just one quarter? Because then I was like, Alright, let me see how bad my day is going to be. And you know, yes, like with closing one eye, right? Yes, I was brutally hungover. I would, whenever I put the bottles in the recycling at night, I would like put newspaper overtop, so like, I wouldn’t even look at it and see that there were four bottles for on a on a Tuesday on a Wednesday on a Thursday, right in the recycling bin, and then I would go upstairs. And after my shower, I’d be putting on my eyeliner. And like staring in the mirror while putting on my eyeliner was brutal, because my eyes were watery. And they were bloodshot. And I was so standoffish and defensive with my husband, because I didn’t want him to look too closely at me. I was sort of moving really, really fast. So that he couldn’t like to pause and look at me too fast. And he would be like, how are you feeling this morning? And I would just be like, what? I’m fine. I’m fine. I’m great. I got to go. I’m so busy. I have so much going on. And it was because I didn’t want him to see what was going on with me.



Yet so relatable. Yeah, that second bottle. And your first question, how bad Am I going to feel? That’s what I mean. When I say drinking is hard. Like getting sober is hard. But drinking is hard. Because how do you start your day with how bad am I going to feel? You start your day with a punch in the face? And then you expect yourself to perform at your best ability? Right? Yeah. Oh, and if I was so hungover that even coffee didn’t seem like a good idea. It was going to be a really bad day. And if my husband I mean, for me, it was investigative work to be to be like, Good morning to him. I mean, it was always keep my distance, but try to gauge like, is he mad at me? Did I do anything? Yeah, if he’s mad at me, guess what? I’m more mad back at him for any odd, any reason.


Casey McGuire Davidson  29:44

Did you ever pass out on the couch? Because I would and my husband sometimes couldn’t wake me up. And so, I’d wake up at two or three in the morning and sort of creep upstairs and if the door was like shut fully shut versus a jar, I would feel like it was him sending some kind of a disapproving message to me like, I would be pissed if he shut the door on me when I was on the couch, despite the fact that I completely passed out on a weeknight and he couldn’t wake me up, you know?



Yeah, the story is so familiar. I wanted my family to go upstairs and go to bed without me. I wanted to be left alone. I wanted to be left alone with my drink. I didn’t want anyone judging me. I didn’t want anyone watching me. And now looking back, that is so sad. That is so like, the days are long, and the years are short. But I was so capped out at the end of the day, and at the end of my drinking, I was so dependent on alcohol, that it was my number one priority. And I didn’t need anyone judging me for it. And my excuse was, I do everything for everyone. Like that was a murder. So, I’m taking care of everything. And all I do is everything for you guys. So go to bed without me. And leave me alone.


Casey McGuire Davidson  30:56

Yeah, right. And one of the things that I want to talk about this because we think that drinking helps us cope and I think that’s true, whether you’re a stay at home mom, or you’re on maternity leave, or you’re at work, right it, we feel like it helps us cope with life. And you know, I think and Dowsett Johnston, who wrote the book drink, she called it the modern woman steroid, right? And we’re taught, we’re taught that drinking wine will help every piece of marketing every piece of the mommy wine jokes, the memes, the, you know, what we tell each other is that here have a glass of wine, you’ll feel better. And yet, it doesn’t help us cope. Like when I coach working women, the first thing we do is say, Okay, you’re taking away your favorite reward. What are you scared that you’ll miss? Or you won’t be able to do what’s terrifying you about giving up alcohol? And a lot of it is? How will I relax? How will like cope with my spouse? How will I tune out of life the way I need to? And you remove alcohol, and you actually have to get better at boundaries and prioritizing yourself and like, the things you’re scared of are clues that you need help in a way you don’t have completely and you’re drinking to tolerate situations and things you don’t want to be in. What if you address drinking, then it means maybe those people, your friends, maybe you’re not in the right job for you. But you can ignore that by pouring alcohol on it and doing it anyways. That is exactly what I was doing.


Casey McGuire Davidson  32:40

Yeah, well, so tell me how, what led up to your decision that you needed to do what for me was my worst case scenario, which is actually stopped drinking versus holding on to the illusion that I will somehow this time only have two drinks twice a week. And then how did you get through early sobriety being a working mom?



Mm hmm. Yeah. So first of all, I love the wine memes and the jokes. I love a sense of humor. And I love to make it could be like that. Like if everybody’s having a drink first drink before the drink, or a drink in the morning with this or that, like, oh, let’s make this funny because then that makes me seem normal and like, I’m okay. My worst case scenario was dying from alcohol. I had this vision of me in a hospital bed with my kids at the bottom and it all being all my fault. that terrified me. My second worst case scenario was getting sober. It did not want to be sober. Sally, over here, I could not see a life for myself not drinking. Like I said, I was born and raised in Wisconsin. Alcohol was part of every single thing I knew. I thought sobriety meant like joining a nunnery being like a very boring person, a very sad person, a very person that lived in solitude because I didn’t have any role models. I knew two people that quit drinking. One was my aunt, and she seemed sad about it. Went to meetings and basements with all men and seemed sort of deprived. And my dad quit drinking when I was very young, like, by the time I was five years old, and he didn’t have community to do it and he didn’t really heal from his things. He just transferred his behaviors to other things. So those were the visions for me of a life of sobriety. So, I tried very hard to keep it in my life. I did my first sober experiment. I did 100 Day Challenge with Belle thinking about I do, too. That was how I love her.



Yes, she was so on point, and you know spoke told it like it was and I actually had her on the podcast so I will link to that which is pretty amazing talking to her years after I want it.


Yes, give all the credit to her because I mean there, I wasn’t night with my line looking Googling and of course there was a hip sobriety I You know, Holly was just done. And so, I mean, diving into her work, like gripping on every word like, this is me, found bail, and decided to do 100 Day Challenge. I made it to 70 days, and I thought I was cured. So, this was perfect. Um, I quit drinking so I could prove that I didn’t have to quit drinking. I could keep up element. I just went for 70 days. So obviously I have no problem. So, it was three years of that, and enough drinking and enough drinking. At one point, I even went five months.


Casey McGuire Davidson  35:36

And then back to husband. No. Did he think that there was an issue with alcohol?



Yes, I, the entity did. At first, he was really protective and confused. But by the end, he did, but him and I were really disconnected. I wasn’t sharing with him, and he was secretly looking on. He’s so loyal. He wouldn’t want to leave me or give an ultimatum or anything like that. He was secretly online trying to figure out his role and codependence and what he should do and what how we could help. You know, it was very confusing for both of us. And people ask me all the time how to help a loved one. I don’t know. Because a lot of things he said pissed me off. I didn’t need it. Like, you’d be like, Wow, back in the saddle again so fast. You know, you know, it’d be like, You don’t know my life. Screw you. I packed us up. And I got us here at this party. I dressed everybody. I packed the car. I brought the snacks. Guess I’m going to have a drink. Everybody’s having a drink. Yeah, I don’t know why I had two bottles the night before. And I stumbled up the stairs. Yeah, it was going to hurt myself. By stumbling. You know what I mean?


Casey McGuire Davidson  36:41

You know, what’s interesting is my husband never really said anything to me. And the, you know, to the point that the week I finally stopped drinking, for the last time when I had been sort of mentally and emotionally tortured by this back and forth for probably eight years. He said to me, we, I’m sure this is why I moved here. We live within three miles of 90,90, tasting rooms, wine tasting rooms. And he said to me, like why don’t you just become a member of the Chateau St. Michel wine club. So, you don’t have to buy a couple of bottles of wine a couple of times a week. And I was just like, in my own mind being like, listen to what you just said, like, how are you not calling me out on this. But at the same time, he was like, every time I sort of dipped a toe in there, you were so defensive. And so closed off. And so, there was nothing to see here that he was like, I’m not your parent. You know, I don’t want to put that dynamic in our relationship. So, he never really said anything about it.



I know right? Where you live? Because I’ve been to the winery twice?


Casey McGuire Davidson  38:01

No, you haven’t really? Of course. Oh, my gosh, three miles.



I love that one. Yeah, of course, I’m making it a point to be there. Not once but twice. So, my mantra to my husband is always You’re not my dad. I mean, it’s been that way. And when we when we got together in college, we met in a bar, and I never wanted to go home. And he knew nothing good ever happens after midnight. So, we had this thing. I mean, he partied with me, but he had his limit. I did not. And when he thought it was time to go home, he was quickly reminded he’s not my dad’s, so he too was not allowed to say to my girlfriend and I who were both huge strikers and our husband who were sort of like both of them, like, Alright, let’s get these girls home. We would always say to them, like, love me, don’t judge me like, which was somehow a pass. And I would tell my husband like you knew who you married, and he was sort of like, we got together 23 He was like, I kind of thought you’d grow up. The weird thing was I drank way more at 40 than I did. 23. And yet, yeah, I was just like you knew who he married. All that kind of stuff, which, looking back. I mean, I think that we do so much work, to hold on to our drinking, because it’s so important to us. And I know that for the longest time, I wouldn’t talk to my husband about it. Because even when I was stopping, I was like, if I say something, he’s going to know I have a problem. And if he knows I have a problem, if I want to go back to drinking, he’s going to be watching me and judging me. Every time I finish a bottle of wine every time I drink four days a week, and I just couldn’t imagine that being our lives. You know what I mean?



Right, well, we’re perfect. First of all, we’re perfect. So, we’re afraid of failure. We don’t allow ourselves to try something and change our mind. Under, like, we think if we make this declaration, then we have to do that forever. Yeah. So, we’re scared to make an announcement because we’re afraid we, we won’t keep that promise. And we’re meant to be perfect, right? Also, we don’t do anything wrong, and we don’t have any problems. You know, you’re like, Everything’s fine. Everything’s fine is the story that we, we tell ourselves, so we don’t want them to know. Yeah, my final surrender was with my husband. I was between jobs. I was unemployed. I was absolutely miserable. We were so disconnected. Him and I, the kids were getting older and starting to notice. And that was annoying.


Casey McGuire Davidson  40:37

How old were your kids when you stopped drinking?



My oldest was 12. Okay, but I mean, I started my little experiments. Three. She was nine when I started this drink. Actually, when I was 2,1 was my golden birthday. My 21st Birthday legally, I could drink. I wrote in my diary. I was afraid I was an alcoholic. And it would be 21 years later before I actually quit.


Yeah, so it’s something that was always I knew I liked it more than most people I knew it lit up my brain in a way that my husband didn’t feel. I mean, you could walk away from it, I never would. So, for the first time I did, we were him. and I were out to dinner on a very random Tuesday night. And he said, something like that alcohol isn’t helping me when I was trying to share how miserable and depressed, I was. And I quit to show him to prove him wrong, right. So, I left my wine right there on that table, which I had never done before. And we weren’t going to pick any up on the way home, right? And so, I went to bed mad, and I woke up and was like, surrendered for the first time of my life. A person who has it all together. I said, I think I need to quit. And I need help. Like, can you help me? And he was thrilled to have some direction to know what to do. He said anything. And I said, Well, you just not drink with me. Like, for the first few weeks, and he actually had a better, better understanding than I did that our whole life was going to change. And he was okay with it. You know, I was scared. I was scared for our social life. I was scared for our family. How do we fit in? Like, I’m going to be a weirdo. So, we’re personnel, you know, like, I don’t know how to do this. And he was into it. He wanted it for me. And these days that way, but I’ll tell you, everything’s changed. And it’s in the best way. I feel like it’s Eve ride skis fair play. Because once I leveled up, my whole family had to level up to there were things where I had to set boundaries. I wasn’t going to be the only one responsible for laundry all the time, right? Yeah. And I got sober in February. It’s going to be five years coming up.


Casey McGuire Davidson  42:44

Wait, like, dang, I did too. Oh, yeah. February 20. Okay, I’m February 18. I’m going to hit seven years.



Yes. So awesome. So that St. Patrick’s Day. Again, this seems like a theme party on St. Patrick’s Day that kids wanted me to have people over at, you know, and celebrate. Like I always did. Like I do all the little St. Patrick’s things for my kids, and then drink wine with the moms. And I wasn’t going to do that when I was what, like three weeks sober or something. And they were they were bummed. They didn’t know exactly what was going on. But it’s weird, because everybody notices when you drink too much. But when you quit, you don’t get a lot of gold stars.


Casey McGuire Davidson  43:25

Yeah, well, and that’s what’s so helpful to connect with other people on the alcohol free path, because nobody else in your life realizes that if you hit day 14, that might be the longest you’ve gone without drinking in five years. You know what I mean? Like, you deserve a fucking parade.



How many walks? You’ve taken, how many podcasts you’ve listened to? How much Quit Lit you’ve read? Yeah, like, but in your head… to get to day 14? That is so hard.


Casey McGuire Davidson  43:59

Yes. A noble need to understand that that is huge. You know that that is amazing, and terrifying and hard. And how many times you said you were going to do this and take a break and you got to day four and just convinced yourself it wasn’t worth it, or you had a good day or a hard day. That’s when you need people who’ve been there before and can tell you that you’re amazing or give you tips and tricks or reinforce that you can text from the bathroom at a dinner party. You know what I mean?



Yeah, exactly. Exactly. We need someone I had a friend that got sober with me, and I wouldn’t be here today without her.


Casey McGuire Davidson  44:43

How did you find her it? Was she just generally in your life at the



same point of her life? She was a friend, a drinking buddy of mine. And I was like I told my friends actually I like apologized. It was a very mournful, somber, sad conversation to say, I’m going to quit drinking and I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. Like I was bad at this. So now I have to quit. Let my hand put me in the corner. Shame on me, I can’t keep drinking. And this friend said, oh, yeah, me too. And she literally did it with me. So, we were back together, and it would be nine o’clock at night. And I’d say, I have to leave this house. Like, let’s go get coffee and dessert. It used to be cigarettes and wine.


So, yeah, having a community at that point of people that understand is so important. And then learning you and I, to tune in to ourselves to let ourselves be and actually give ourselves the rest that we need to sit with ourselves. I couldn’t sit with myself, like I said, panic attacks in the car. I think that’s because I was alone. Without noise. I couldn’t be doing things. What I was alone with my thoughts.


Casey McGuire Davidson  45:50

So, you had to be with yourself.



I couldn’t, I didn’t know how to be with myself. I had always poured alcohol on every bit of discomfort. I was like a toddler learning, like throwing temper tantrums, learning how to feel, how I feel. And I told myself, so I had a Serie, I did three eulogies in three years, right before I quit make this my drinking went from like bad to worse and changed from it change to self-medication, honestly, like this grief. And I told myself not to get over it. Like, I didn’t think I was allowed to feel those things. And because I did the eulogies. I wanted to keep it together. I didn’t want to be bumbling and crying up at a pulpit somewhere. You know what I mean? I wanted to do a really good job. And so, I didn’t let myself feel anything until afterwards, but then afterwards, get over it. So, move on. Right.


So, you know that that sort of tumbled, but we’re allowed to. The other thing is one of my sales teams I worked on was all men. And then me. And we had a retreat with a lot of drinking at this retreat, this weekend retreat. And we went on and set our goals. And all of their goals was for their wife to be a stay at home mom. And I thought, Oh, that’s interesting, because I heard that was their goal is to like make enough money.



Yeah, yeah. And I was like, Okay, that’s interesting, because I’m here. And I’m also the stay at home mom, I’m a peer of yours in the same position. And I’m also the stay at home. You know what I mean? Expecting myself to be able to do literally everything at 110%.


Casey McGuire Davidson  47:24

Yeah. And I mean, people talk about, like, the mental load of motherhood. And I think that’s true. It’s not that I mean, my husband completely helped. I say that, except for when it was baseball season or basketball season when he was totally, you know, unavailable, in addition to his job as a teacher or principal. And yet, I was working a full time job and you know, had to negotiate like, once I stopped drinking, like, Hey, can you get the kids on Tuesday night, so that I can go to therapy from 6:00 to 7:00pm? And he was like, Is this going to be every week? How long is this going to go on? And I was just like, you’ve been effing coaching and getting home at seven 730 For years, for six months of the year and gone every Saturday. And now I need one hour, once a week. And you’re asking me when it’s going to end? You know, I mean, that’s the like renegotiation of who does what and you know, needing to hold your ground and not feel guilty when stuff happens. And I would come home from therapy, and he’d be like, so were you talking about me? And I was like, Oh, honey, of course that I was talking about work and my boss and of course, I was like, Yeah, of course. I’m big complaint department.


Yeah. I mean, I love you. But it’s the thing. It’s not that you need him to watch his own kids for an hour. You also had that invisible load of managing it scheduling for what if they had a practice they needed picked up or an appointment or like you were arranged to do it, but I’m going to figure out where he needs to be at what time and they’re going to calendar and like, you know me, oh, but I got dinner for tonight. And here’s what it is, you know. And so, when you stop drinking, it’s really hard for women but you need to lower the bar and ask for help and not even ask for help but demand help in some way. You know, which is difficult. Underwhelm is my favorite tool. underwhelm in the beginning. Do you know how do you tell women to do that?



Let it all go do the least minimum. I mean, try not to get fired from your job but fly under the right you don’t have to take on new projects. You don’t also have to do fitness and exercise routine. Like you don’t have to add it. You don’t have to read 12 books. 12 more books this year than last year and you don’t have to do all the things, or you don’t have to be room. Like, do the least minimal possible your body is healing. I’m like treat yourself like a newborn baby, swaddle yourself, self soothe, you’re just learning to self soothe in the beginning. So, do that. And then yes, delegate and then money financially, like, obviously, we save so much by not drinking. It’s ridiculous. So, you can afford a coach and support, also a housecleaner and the landscape. So, I’m going to mow your lawn, like, don’t do those things. Take them off. And yes, hold your partner accountable for the whole deal. From beginning to end. If they’re going to do dinner, fantastic. They can plan the menu, they can make the meal, they can clean up the meat like they’re capable, but we’ve been doing it for them. And then it’s not going to look the present. If you’re my husband, it’s delicious food and the previous presentation is questionable to go grab your slab.


Casey McGuire Davidson  50:59

Let it be Yeah, you don’t have to let go of some of the micromanaging that we’re used to doing. Right? I mean, you know, you want to go to the grocery store. Because when you go, I’m speaking for myself. When I go there, my husband brings home all the Oreos, and then I eat them. Yeah, they wouldn’t eat especially if I stopped drinking. I mean, he would make dinner. And like sometimes, which you know, now I’m, I’m way more cool with, he would make mac and cheese and hotdogs and slice them up. And like that was dinner. I’d be like, alright, that’s cool. You know, everyone’s time.



So, and for moms, I say if dinner is mac and cheese and hotdogs for five days that week, that’s okay. Yeah, if your kids don’t get broccoli for this week, while you’re trying to be alcohol free, that’s okay.


Casey McGuire Davidson  51:48

And like your kids can watch the iPad for three hours a night. That is better than you drinking to the point of like, not remembering or not sleeping that night, because it doesn’t last forever. But you can’t. You know, if you’re drinking to tolerate your life and do everything, you can’t remove the alcohol and keep the standards, exactly the same as they were when you were drinking to get through it. You know?



Yeah, it’s not sustainable. Yes. So, they can eat mac and cheese, they cannot have a bath, they can have iPad time. Eventually, when they have a happy, sober, healthy man, it is the best thing for them. It is the best thing for them. And you don’t get from here to there without some of that in between without underwhelming yourself.


Casey McGuire Davidson  52:34

And it doesn’t take that long. It really doesn’t. And you’re, you know, but the first 30 days are really? Yeah, that’s the time when you need to bubble up. And yeah, you know, I used to go to the gym, I had a gym membership that that had a kids club, which was amazing. Part of my, you know, getting through the day was I would go to the gym on Saturday or Sunday, put my kids in kids club for two hours, and not exercise, I would go in the hot tub or the steam room or even just sit in a little lounge area. And like read a book, and then get smoothies with the kids and come home. And then it was like, I’ve been out I’ve done something for myself. I’ve had some downtime. The kids have played, you know, for me, it was a win-win.



Oh, it’s perfect. I love it. I still go to the gym sometimes and do this. But it’s okay. You know, maybe I’ll make myself walk on a treadmill for half an hour. But, um, yeah, just for time, and I spent Saturday nights at the gym alone, because I was that bored and lonely and unsure of what to do with myself. Oh, investing in a gym membership, or a safe place to go when you’re feeling itchy and antsy inside your house. And if you’re like me, if everything’s not and it’s bad, I’m always itching antsy inside my house, right? Like, sitting still is hard for people like us but figuring out ways to take care of yourself and then living in the flow of your life and not resisting. So, here’s the other thing. I didn’t know how I would be friends with those friends without drinking. The truth is those relationships have dissolved. And that’s okay. It’s sad. It’s painful. It’s hard. It’s okay. It’s ultimately better for me, and it’s opened up doors for people that are like minded in this way. I’ve met new friends. So that’s been beautiful. I couldn’t see myself doing that job while being sober. I’m no longer in that job. Now I have my own company, doing what absolutely seems my soul, what I should have been doing all along. Part of the reason that I was drinking is because I wasn’t listening to myself. I wasn’t aligning with my highest values. I wasn’t doing the things that I’ve always been meant to do. I was pouring alcohol on that too. Now, because I’ve been through the process of getting sober, I built myself and now I have the confidence to actually live the life that I want to live. Just brave and it is creating boundaries and saying no to something so you can say yes to others, but mostly it’s hearing yourself figuring out who you are. And you do that by journaling, fufu, and a few. To some of us, find your voice and what you want. Right?


Casey McGuire Davidson  55:11

Yeah. I mean, I think that when you’re saying that I’m sure some women listening to that are terrified, right? Because they’re like, What I don’t want to change all my friends and I need to do this job. And in my mind, it’s a process, right of evolution and of removing some things that aren’t serving you, and adding new things in. So, I didn’t go out pretty much for the first 30 days. I also weirdly didn’t tell my husband about any of the inner turmoil or how worried I was about alcohol or any of that. I didn’t tell him I heard a sober coach. Most of my clients do tell their spouse. But basically, I told him, I was doing 100 day, no alcohol challenge. I wrote my coach mostly from work. When I came in, in the mornings, or when I was leaving at the end of the day. Sometimes from my phone at night, it sort of depended on how much I was struggling. I did coaching calls with my coach from my car at work, you know, literally blocked off my calendar. And part of the reason you know, I did ask my husband not to bring wine into the house and was very clear. Like, even if I asked for it, I really want to do this. This is important to me, but I told him it was a health kick. And I did hip sobriety school with Hollywood occur. And I did just interview her on the podcast. So, I’ll link to that as well when I was 60 days sober. And I didn’t tell him that either. Like, in retrospect, I was like, how is he possibly this unobservant that I’m getting all the supports and doing all this work, and he isn’t noticing. But part of me says, that’s how I got away with drinking for so long. You know, what I need, their attachment styles, avoidant, our attachment style is anxious. So avoidant for them to not notice the Netsy is probably the way they prefer it.


Casey McGuire Davidson  57:20

You know, I had what I would consider a good marriage. And at the same time, we had divided and conquered to such a degree, that as I look at it, we really were only together for an hour or two a night. And when we were, we were taking care of two kids, right, we were still dividing and conquering dinner and dishes and bedtime and bath time. And then at the end of the day, I was like, my safe place was to just go to bed. And I felt boring. But how much less checked out was I then when I was basically drunk on the couch? You know what I mean?



It’s doing less harm. Yeah. It’s a very private journey, though. I mean, even when I shared my husband, even now, when I share with my husband, he doesn’t get it, right. He doesn’t get it all he tries to understand, but he doesn’t have a drink now voice in his head. And it was a private journey. Anyways, even my friend that was going through it with me had a different experience. So, it’s unique for all of us, right, and it’s private, and it’s shaky, and it’s wobbly for quite some time. And that’s okay. That’s the way it that’s the way it is. And you build your muscle as you go. And you build mostly your relationship with yourself, and what happens to my clients and your cars to you change in the process. So, who you are on day one is that the same as you R&D 30,60,90. What happens is you lose the desire to drink. You literally rewire your brain. And once you understand what alcohol is, you have these unconscious messages saying it’s relaxation, and it’s fun. But when you relate that to hiding your wine bottle in the morning and not being able to stomach your coffee, that’s not fun. That’s not fun at all. And when you recognize it’s alcohol that’s doing that, you know, you start to change in the process. So, it’s really beautiful. And as far as your whole life changing, it is little at a time it’s a process and you choose it, you welcome it, nothing happens without your approval, you start to see things with new eyes when the sobriety starts to bring clarity,


Casey McGuire Davidson  59:27

when you get a lot more empowered in advocating for your own needs. Because you’re less guilty, you’re less overcompensating, you know, you actually follow through on things that you always said you were going to do. I can’t tell you how many times I was like, I need to go to a 10am yoga class on Sunday. And I was always hungover and then I would like, you know, blow it off. And yet, when I stopped drinking, after a while, I would go to an 8am workout class. I would be outside I would see friends, I’d grab Starbucks, I chat for a bit, and I’d come home kind of before the rest of the house had, you know, definitely before they got out of their pajamas. And I didn’t miss anything. But I’d gotten all that time for myself. And I asked my husband at some point, I was like, Do you feel like our life is more boring? Now that I stopped drinking? And he was like, well, sometimes when we go out, you know, he basically was like, you don’t rip off my shirt anymore at the end of the night. And I was like, Oh, honey, I don’t remember boasted that, you know? Like, I don’t mean to burst your bubble. But in the morning, sometimes I’d be like, shit, did we have sex? Did we not have sex? I actually don’t remember, you know, looking for clues during the tech detective work in the morning.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:00:51

But at the same time, he was like, other than that, it’s a lot more peaceful. Like, it’s just less you being annoyed and irritated. And then you being not wanting to look me in the eye. He was like, You’re just very much more even you don’t come home and kind of be pissed off about work, you aren’t banging around the laundry. He you’re asking me to help. But you’re not, you know, resentful about it. And I was like, okay, that’s I can deal with that. You know?



Yeah. Yeah. Well, my confidence has grown so much. And that’s the most attractive thing for my husband. And for me for anyone, right? And I didn’t have the same. It wasn’t the same. But that’s the thing. Like we see a movie like Bad Moms, and we act like overdrinking with our girlfriends is some sort of women’s empowerment. And it’s the opposite. Because even when I had an actual issue I bring up with my husband and I would do it after drinking. He was smart enough to not engage in that dialogue with me. Yeah. And you wouldn’t fight he would think it was the whining talking. And he wasn’t going to fight with me about that. Even though it was demanding that he did I was trying to light a fire and poke every nerve and bear I could to get her eyes on him right to be noticed to be heard to get attention. Yeah, whatever it was, I had valid things. But now alcohol didn’t it made me weep. How could he listen to me if I’m just learning and stumbled, like no one’s going to respect that. Now when I have a need, I say it and it gets met, right. And I have a consequence, and I have a boundary. And I can do all these things. And it’s a much, much better life for everyone for my whole family. And we’re having a lot of fun. I’ll tell you, I couldn’t do things as a drinker, because alcohol was the priority. And I would be stumbling. By the end. Well, now. I mean, concerts and sporting events, and hiking and travel and all these amazing things are not ruined by alcohol, or by my drinking, or by now I’ve had no, I’ve overdone it. And it’s over, you know?


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:02:54

Yeah. And I mean, I know when, you know, I thought that I could never travel without drinking, or that I feel so left out. And you know, I’ve gone to Italy and Greece and Amsterdam and Africa with my kids without my kids, just me and my husband. And we talked about it. And, you know, I mean, I think I think it’s disingenuous to say that you don’t miss any of your old habits. I mean, I used to love sitting with a craft of wine and my husband for hours, you know, in Italy, and then, you know, basically passing out and then going to late dinner. And at the same time, I get to walk around the streets of Venice before anyone else is up and feel great. And take all these pictures. And one of the things he said to me was like, you know, sometimes you were kind of dead weight at the end of the night. And I was really stressed out trying to get us home. And we were in some sketchy situations, and I was really pissed at you. You know, you think it’s all fun and hysterical. And you’re, you’re a great time. He was like, I really resented that I had to be responsible for you and me that you were deadweight that you didn’t help. And, you know, I was like, oh, yeah, that does suck now that I look back on it.



And you can see it now when you look at other people who are in that condition and you have silver eyes, you can see yourself there how that maybe wasn’t as fun for your partner, as you were thinking it was for you.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:04:29

Yeah, yeah. I just want to give a couple more tips because I like as working moms, as coaches who work with a lot of working moms. You know, when I look at women scheduled part of my life, you know, in talking to them, it’s like, of course you drink. You drink because you feel like it’s all too much. And here’s the thing, it is all too much, but it’s hard to share those expectations, you need to draw better boundaries, you need to lower the bar. But some of the stuff that I did was like block off my calendar to make sure that I could go from a walk a walk at work every day. Like even in the dead of winter, I put like furry boots in my car and my big puffy jacket, and even 20 minutes a day listening to a podcast getting fresh air and movement really helped. I also I also left early, I had trouble saying no at work. So sometimes I scheduled like on a Friday a pedicure at four o’clock or something else I had to do so that I would get out of the office, and we’d get something for myself on those days when I was like, I deserve a drink for getting through the week. And then pick up my kids and get sushi take out and watch a movie, right making sure that you actually do get a reward. And also eating something before you drive home sometimes driving a different route home. So, you don’t go by the grocery store on autopilot. Those were some of the big things I did. I also told everyone I worked with that I wasn’t drinking because I was doing a health care. Because I needed that accountability. And a lot of them were like, oh my god, I could never do that. And when is your 100 days? up so you can we can go out to wine. But you know, when I got to 100 days, I said, Oh, I feel so good. I’m going to go for six months. But it gave me that accountability, telling everyone so that it was harder for me to drink. What are some of your tips? What did you do? Or what do you tell people to do?



So much the same? Of course. I like the idea of spoil yourself sober, that this is not a life of deprivation that you can live the life of your dreams. What does that look like? Envision your best sober sell. And for me, it means manicures and pedicures. It means spa days. It means coffee dates, it means making everything a beautiful, sensual experience. So instead of the cheap, stopping at the CVS for the cheap model wine on my way home, because I’m stressed out it would be like, Yes, I’m getting out of the house, if that’s something you need to do. That’s a walk in nature. I love if that’s a manicure, I love that too. If it is being home, lighting the candle getting your favorite sparkling water with the best garnish and a pretty glass, it could be a new glass, you know, and playing your favorite music, putting a practice, and making. So, most of my clients, it’s not even that they that it’s drinking what they want is to not make dinner, they don’t want to be responsible for dinner every single night. It’s not even that they want a glass of wine. They want to skip out on the responsibility of making dinner. Right? So, it is sushi takeout, it is again underwhelmed. What would make it easy for you to get through this day. What if the kid didn’t get it back? They would survive, right? If it kept, you sober. It would be worth it. If or you know, maybe, maybe happy does that time? Maybe it’s sushi takeout. Maybe it’s takeout all week long. So that you can get through that time. Maybe you take a walk, you know, maybe the kids play at the park, and you ignore them and listen to your podcast, you know, yeah, whatever it takes to the day in the beginning, for sure. But spoil yourself, make it awesome. Don’t look at what you’re giving up. Because I think it’s like addition by subtraction like you are removing alcohol but if you removed alcohol, for me, it was actually the portal to everything I wanted in life, to reading more books to doing more yoga to take you more hikes to making more friends to owning my own business, you know like to continuing this like lifelong learning. What things could you get out was alcohol getting in the way and if you remove that, so go for like the best version of yourself. And then don’t give me any excuses about like, you can’t afford it.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:09:05

That you know I saved $100 In my first 60 days not so



yes, you give yourself a manicure or you know you get a manicure certainly a walk cost nothing and a massage cost more. There’s everything in between from a candle through a pair of socks to a Starbucks drink to what you know, whatever but lavish yourself in this and if you need to eat candy, then you eat candy, right? You do whatever you need to do to get by and stay sober.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:09:34

When I think about what I drink every week, just to put it in perspective. So, I my favorite bottle of wine was about $14 and say I drank a bottle or a bottle and a half every night of the week, right? So, Monday, Tuesday Wednesday, you know is probably somewhere around 15 to $20 that is easily $100 each week. And so, you can get a massage, get a pedicure, you can hire a babysitter for four hours on a Saturday and or get a gym membership, right with that money. And you actually need to do that because there’s a reason you’re drinking.



Yeah, absolutely. So, I recommend doing all those things. And I did, I did those things.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:10:25

The other thing I did, which was, which was harder for me to do, I just want to put that out there. Because for so many of us, it’s like, Well, I do all this stuff at work. I can’t say no, I have a boss, I have colleagues, the work needs to get done. And then my kids need all this stuff. And I’m left with so little. So, the I stopped drinking in February, the sort of end of spring, that year. My husband wanted my son to play summer baseball, my husband is a varsity baseball coach and has been for 20 years. He also plays summer ball and likes to go fly fishing. We, I mean, he’s got a good life for eight. And so, but I was always the one stuck with the two year old and the eight year old, going all summer three times a week to baseball practice and trying to amuse my two year old in the park, you know, at the same time. And my husband wanted him to play. And I said to him like, Okay, if he’s going to do this, you have to take him, you have to be responsible. And it wasn’t because I had another good reason. I just wanted to nap and lay in the sunshine and cuddle my daughter or read a novel, you know? And he was just like, Yep, I’ll do it. And I was like, okay, but last year, you said that, and you went fly fishing for a week, and you played your baseball team, and you weren’t available, et cetera, et cetera. So, if you’re going to do this, you need to not play baseball this year. And he was just like, I am not willing to do that. I said, Well, if it’s not important enough for you to not play then Hank playing this is literally not important enough. And it took you know, it took him a bath because he was like, you can do this. And I was like, Yeah, but so could you and you’re not. So, Hank didn’t play baseball this summer. The world went on. I had a lovely summer, after work. Just getting home at 530. It’s light out till 10 o’clock. You’re on this summer, not dragging him to different parks and just standing there with my daughter. You know, yeah.



High five sister. You did not light yourself on fire to keep somebody else warm. Right? Yeah.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:12:41

And I honestly didn’t care. And I got to tell you, my eight year old could give a shit. About summer. Everybody played in spring, you know what I mean?



Right, all worked out. The other thing is when you’re newly sober, you can be bitchy, and irritated and sober. You can be resentful and sober. stay sober, like so many people drink to change their mood. Right? Like, certainly my clients drink because their husband thinks they’re happier when they have a drink.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:13:10

Oh my God, my husband used to bring me home wine when I was in a bad mood. Because he was like, they want us to change our mood. Yeah,



let yourself be however you are, which is probably irritated and annoyed. But stay sober. You don’t have to be happy and sober at first that comes later. But in the beginning, just see sober. Yeah. And for me, that was irritable and annoyed and sober. Now. I’m happy and sober most of the time, right.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:13:38

Most of the time, but not always. Sometimes life is life and you’re in a bad mood. And



you’re right. But I still don’t drink at it. I know how to navigate a bad mood. Right? Like, in the beginning, your emotions are so out of whack. When you’re not used to feeling and your brain is rewiring and you’re missing your pacifier, which is a bottle of champagne toast Saint Michel or whatever.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:14:03

Yeah, yeah. And so, I’m hoping it’s someone’s listening to this. You at the very least realize that you’re not alone. You’ve gotten some concrete and practical strategies for how to navigate early sobriety while being a working mom and have permission to prioritize yourself to get yourself the tools and support and treats you need to get through this time because I promise you it gets better. And being a working mom actually gets easier when you’re not drinking.



Yeah, absolutely. Just the mantra, can be. You are allowed. You are allowed to feel what you feel. You’re allowed to treat yourself to whatever you need, you’re allowed to help and alone time and all those things and for the guilt that comes in and the guilt about work and mostly motherhood Is change behaviors the best apology, so you stay sober. Your children not only see that you had an alcohol problem, they see that you’re able to overcome something really tough. And that is the best thing for them and it’s the best thing for you.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:15:14

Yeah, I love that. Well, so I know people are going to want to follow up with you and learn about your work and what you do. So where is the best place for someone listening to this to find you?



Yeah, you can go to my website I’ve got lots of resources and offerings there, of course coaching a membership and online class. I’m on all social media platforms, LinkedIn, and Instagram and Facebook and Pinterest. So, I love connecting with other people, especially like, high achieving professionals like us and teaching them self-compassion, tuning in self-discovery. And stop pouring wine on all of that.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:15:56

Yeah. All right. I love this. I’m really grateful that you came on to have this conversation.



Thank you so much for the opportunity, Casey, I appreciate all the work that you do. And I’m a huge fan. So, it was an honor to be here today.


Casey McGuire Davidson  1:16:09


Oh, it’s so nice to get to know you.


Alright, I’m going to stop.

Thank you for listening to this episode of The Hello Someday Podcast. If you’re interested in learning more about me or the work I do or accessing free resources and guides to help you build a life you love without alcohol, please visit And I would be so grateful if you would take a few minutes to rate and review this podcast so that more women can find it and join the conversation about drinking less and living more. 


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