7 Novels That Capture the Pain and Chaos of Alcoholism Literary Hub

She went from enjoying a privileged youth to tumbling into a terrible drug addiction, but her story finishes with her ability to overcome her destructive habits to make a better, healthier future for herself. Sober Grid connects those who want to get sober or who are in recovery from alcohol use disorder with other people focused on sobriety. Some individuals join the app to receive support, while others join to give support. A stunning debut novel about a short but intense friendship between two girls that ends in tragedy, Marlena pinpoints both what it feels like to bethe addict and what it’s like to be the friend of one. When AA Doesn’t Work For You,” there’s another approach to treating alcoholism. Despite Alcoholics Anonymous helping many people in their recovery, Ellis argues people with alcoholism have irrational thoughts and beliefs that keep them tied to their addiction. Through rational emotive therapy — developed by Ellis — people with alcohol addictions can challenge these thoughts and beliefs and replace them with healthier ones. About 21.5 million people in the United States ages 12 and above have substance abuse disorders.

Alcohol consumption leaves us dehydrated, which would be bad enough for our skin on its own. But in response to that dehydration, our bodies start retaining water, which causes puffiness and bloating that will accentuate the appearance of a double chin.

“My Fair Junkie” is meant to be read as a warning about how addiction and drugs can destroy anyone’s life, even those born in the lap of luxury, but Dresner was able to overcome her demons. She now writes for a recovery magazine called TheFix.com, and regularly contributes to other addiction help related media. Dresner was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon after threatening her husband at the time with a knife while high on drugs. Dresner was in and out of halfway houses and spent time in prison before finally finding a way to regain her freedom from the horrors of addiction.

Activities to Keep You in Recovery From an Addiction

Though it’s not specifically for women, Cold Turkey is a great listen for anyone looking to recover outside of a traditional 12-step program. Holly Whitaker was already famous in sobriety circles for her recovery community, Tempest, formerly known as Hip Sobriety. Thanks to plugs from Chrissy Teigen and Sex and the City, Whitaker’s audiobook Quit Like a Woman is capital-F famous in the wider world as well. Blending the author’s bold, relatable style with tactical tips and her own narration, this handy how-to is now the first stop for many women questioning their relationship with alcohol. This is the book SGS founder Millie credits with her sobriety after downloading it on Audible on a particularly nasty hangover !
For people with addictions, finding support can mean the difference between success and relapse, or even life and death. Drink is not an addiction memoir so much as an investigative look into why women, specifically, drink and despite my mindset at the time of reading it, I did find it fascinating. What’s so fascinating about this book is that he approached it from the standpoint of a journalist. Because of alcoholics and drug users have notoriously terrible memories, he went back and interviewed the people in his life who had been there to try to piece together what really happened. The central premise of Russell Brand’s Recovery is that you can only be free once you are free from addiction. For many people caught up in a destructive rock and roll lifestyle, the thought of sobriety might seem restrictive. By reframing it and considering that you can only attain that bohemian freedom you’re seeking once no longer dependent on drink and drugs, this could help you if you’re tempted to relapse.

With tons of heart and wisdom, Khar eventually helps readers recognize the shame and stigma surrounding addiction and how there is no one path to recovery. At the end of the day, you’ll want to devour this book because it is ultimately a life-affirming story of resilience that is a must-read. Rausing, the editor of Granta and heiress to a Swedish beverage-packaging fortune, writes beautifully of the idyllic seaside summers of her 1970s childhood and the heavy bonds of family. She does not recover in any straightforward way from worry, obsession, or attempts to control her brother or – obviously – the narrative, but she makes her way towards a kind of serenity. This New York Times Bestseller is an incisive look at our culture of drinking, through a very intersectional lens.

Lush: A Memoir by Kerry Cohen Hoffmann

A Drinking Life” was written 20 years after Hamill took his last drink, and in it he shares how drinking in his early years affected his life trajectory. She’s funny and self-deprecating in a refreshing way, but also real. Much like Clare Pooley’s book, I found myself nodding in agreement as much as I was chuckling at her various insights. She takes the reader on a very humbling journey through her recovery and experience with AA where she gets knocked off her high horse and into a reality that I believe saves her from herself. Carr understands addiction and the personal destruction that leads you to it. He made me think about what I was doing in ways nobody else had done before. Until I read this book, I felt a combination of broken and hopeless. This book by Caroline Knapp was the first recovery memoir I ever read. Or maybe you’re already sober and looking to make more upgrades to your life.

This vulnerable, sobering book is a deep look into gangs and guns, near-death experiences, sex work, masculinity, composite fathers, the concept of “hustle,” and the destructure power of addiction. It is all told through the eyes of Jackson, his family, and his community. Often, we hear the stories of people with addiction finding redemption once they have children—but this is not that kind of story, which is precisely why we love it. It’s about a woman who longs to belong and find comfort in her new life with her husband and baby but instead develops a gripping addiction to wine.

Memoirs from musicians who survived addiction

An alcoholic family member can have a significant and lasting impact on you. Traumatic stress, author Mark Wolynn argues, may actually be passed from generation to generation. Author Veronica Valli is an addiction therapist and recovered alcoholic herself, offering a deep and sincere understanding of an alcoholic’s journey. For as prevalent as drinking is, there is really only one acceptable way to get help – admit you’re an alcoholic and abstain forever. While addiction specialist Michael S. Levy agrees that is very successful for most, in his 35-year career, he’s found that many can successfully moderate with professional help.

Why do heavy drinkers have red noses?

Alcohol is a vasodilator, which means when a person drinks it, their blood vessels open up. More blood flow to the skin causes the red, irritated look common with rhinophyma. Over time, those with uncontrolled rosacea experience thickening skin on the nose giving it that misshapen appearance.

Porter breaks down the chemistry behind alcoholism in an easy to understand format that includes psychological and physiological components to addiction. Ultimately, Alcohol Explained helps you understand your relationship with alcohol consumption and why so many continue to drink despite wishes to quit. Below is a list of books to enrich your recovery experience by helping you understand your relationship with alcohol. Some are newer, while others have stood the test of time and continue to provide value. As you will discover, one of the themes across these books is the surprising joy found in sober lifestyles. In the end, sobriety is often described as a privilege rather than a chore. When I first read this book over ten years ago it felt like I was reading my own journal . I almost wanted to snap it shut, but instead finished it in one day and have read it at least three more times since. Knapp so perfectly describes the emotional landscape of addiction, and as a literary study it’s as perfect a memoir as I’ve ever read. I often think about what it took to publish this when she did, in the 90’s, as a female and a journalist in Boston.

In a brilliant narrative style, she constantly flips back and forth between her personal story and a history of the alcoholic creatives who came before her, their lives intersecting in fascinating ways. There’s a long, beautiful history of writers chronicling their battles with alcoholism and addiction. Many celebrated authors have walked the long, painful road to recovery, spinning their experiences into powerful reads. Ahead, see the 15 stories of struggle, failure, recovery, and grace that move us the most. Have you noticed that our world is increasingly obsessed with drinking? Work events, brunch, baby showers, book club, hair salons—the list of where to find booze is endless. Holly Whitaker, in her own path to recovery, discovered the insidious ways the alcohol industry targets women and the patriarchal methods of recovery. Ever the feminist, she found that women and other oppressed people don’t need the tenets of Alcoholics Anonymous, but a deeper understanding of their own identities. Quit Like a Woman is her informative and relatable guidebook to breaking an addiction to alcohol.

Lawyer and veteran William Porter struggled with alcoholism at various points in his life. His sobriety inspired him to heavily research alcohol and its effects on the body, mind, and we continue to drink even when we know it harms us. The result is a thorough, in-depth scientific look that is still easy to digest. After becoming sober, they wanted to see how much vibrancy they could put back into their daily living. The Sober Lush is for those looking to find joy again in a decadent life after sobriety or for hope of a fulfilling life after recovery.

But as a way to cut down your drinking, it can help you drastically change your drinking habits. If you feel stuck in “mummy wine o’clock” and are a parent questioning your relationship with alcohol, this is the sober book for you. Kate and Mandy are sober mums on a mission to break the booze pattern in mothers and their book empowers readers to make informed choices around alcohol and drinking. Combining positive psychology, coaching methods and workbook features, Love Yourself Sober is a supportive book that will help you centre your self-care and make the changes that are right for you. If you are drinking a lot, blackouts might have become a regular occurrence in your life – perhaps even the sign of a really good night out. In her memoir, Blackout, Sarah Hepolla illustrates why there’s nothing funny about blackouts and that when you blackout you are experiencing alcohol-induced amnesia. If you are looking for a read to help you feel less alone, whilst illustrating the harm of alcohol, this is it. We also love how Sarah dismantles the story of alcohol providing confidence and instead reminds us that it takes away our power and agency.

You could never tell, but she is the perfect example of a high-functioning alcoholic who looks like everything is perfect, even when it clearly isn’t. With beautiful prose, Miller’s memoir is about recovering from a lifetime of difficult relationships and a home situation that seems desperate at times. Still, there is redemption at the end of the road as she details a complicated yet loving relationship with her parents, Sober Home despite the odds. Dresner battles through sex addiction and starting over in her 40s after she went as low as she could imagine. But she ultimately forges a path ahead to find a new life worth living. This book will resonate with those who’ve had a tough time at rock bottom. In my own healing, I have even questioned the use of the word “recovery” in this context at all, since it implies a retrieval of something lost.
Eco Sober House
More than just a memoir, this book is about the societal traps that lead us to drink, how drinking affects our brains and our bodies, and the psychology and neuroscience behind it all. Often, we hear the stories of people with addiction being redeemed by their children — but this is not that kind of story, which is precisely why we love it. It’s about a woman who longs to belong and find comfort in her new life with husband and baby but instead develops a gripping addiction to wine. Recounting the progression from an idyllic childhood to a monstrous meth addiction, Amy Dresner explores best sober books her recovery journey in this insightful memoir. Although the details of our addiction and recovery stories may be different, the core of our experiences is often the same. Identifying with others who have been through the hell of addiction and made it to the other side can provide a cathartic sense of relief, providing both hope and the opportunity to feel seen and perhaps a little less alone. It can be difficult and overwhelming sometimes, looking at the self-help section at your local bookstore or library, to find the book that’s exactly right for you on your particular journey.
best sober books
So Sad Today,” she expands on her tweets, giving readers insight into her poetic struggles through personal essays. This volume isn’t only useful for people living with anxiety and addiction, but anyone who acknowledges that life isn’t always happiness and joy. It is also the book for you if you consider faith to be a necessary piece for the puzzle that addiction recovery entails. This is a story of faith and love through the journey of recovery, more than just a tale from alcoholism best sober books to sobriety. This memoir tells of her painful descent from depression into drug addiction and, eventually, how she broke free. Despite its dark beginning, this is ultimately a hopeful book that inspires readers to root for her throughout. Her confessional style of writing has left an indelible mark that remains influential today. This book explores the next fifteen years of her life, including the various lies that she told herself, and others, about her drug use.

  • We’ve broken down the most important reads on substance use — covering everything from lived experience in memoir, to the latest research, to explorations of what society gets wrong about addiction, and creative interpretation.
  • I often think about what it took to publish this when she did, in the 90’s, as a female and a journalist in Boston.
  • The book ends on a hopeful bottom, where Don is clear-eyed and ready to give not drinking another chance.
  • Author Laura McKowen thought those who could drink casually were “lucky.” Her experience with alcohol, and the reckoning that forced her to come to terms with it, were anything but lucky.

Port St. Lucie Hospital is a 75-bed, inpatient mental health facility located on 20 acres near the beautiful Savannas Preserve. In addition to these services, the Port St. Lucie hospital also offersadultandsenior mental health programs, and apartial hospitalization program. Each of these programs will be tailored to individual patient needs and recovery goals. Common co-occurring substance use disorders is alcohol use disorder . Sobriety is possible, resources are available, and one person’s battle against alcoholism does not have to happen alone. Books are very helpful to stop one from drinking, but not everyone will connect with every book. If a title speaks to you, it would be wise to explore the book and see what stuck out to you. Reading a book may not be the complete solution, but it can send one down the path to rehabilitation.
best sober books
Caroline describes how she drank through her years at an Ivy-League college, her award-winning career, while masking herself as a dutiful daughter and professional. Readers looking for sobriety books geared towards women will appreciate Caroline’s honest account. Allen’s story of being a young woman in a teenage marriage that eventually runs away to Cincinnati, where she begins the destructive pattern of weekend partying and drinking, is a powerful tale. Eventually, she finds sobriety through a commitment to God and humanity to spend the rest of her life doing anything she can to help anybody suffering from alcoholism. Her timeless tale is a powerful one, and definitely one that needs to be read by all. Author Erica Garza grew up in a strict Mexican household in East Los Angeles. She writes with evocative prose about the anxiety that fueled her addiction to masturbation as a young girl, and eventually, her sex and pornography addiction as an adult. Through failed relationships, serial hook-ups, blackouts, and all of the shame that comes with these experiences, Garza writes a riveting memoir narrating a journey of exploration as she seeks therapy.

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