How I Secretly Quit My Secret Habit of Secretly Drinking



These are some titles recommended most often by guests of The Bubble Hour and readers commenting here on UnPickled:

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Online Support Groups:
Mrs D’s Living Sober Community
Women for Sobriety Message Boards
Hello Sunday Morning
In The Rooms
Booze Free Brigade (BGB) Facebook Group: message me via UnPickled Facebook page for the ‘secret knock’

Must-See Recovery Documentaries:

35 thoughts on “Resources

  1. Unpickled… I like Cucumber’s better than pickles. FYI… I don’t know where I was going with that but I just came across your site and read an article that I related to more than anything I’ve ever read before. Pretty neat, I can’t wait to explore your blog in more detail I think it will be time well spent. Thanks for all the work you put in to blogging I know it’s a lot of work, but worth it for you have touched many lives I have no doubt. Look forward to more reading, -Ciao


  2. hi Jean,
    I love your podcast and listen to it a lot. I was doing well in recovery but just back from a boozy vacation in Spain and feel like I ma starting all over. I signed up for the app mentioned above and it looks great. Thanks for all you do,


  3. Dear Jean,

    I sent a comment on 7/19 about how much This blog has helped me. It still is. I’m still new to all of this and still sober 😊 I sent you an email last Sunday, I think but then worried if you received it. I sent it to your site that combines all of the things together by WordPress. It was personal about my life and the first thing I have put on paper. It would sort of ease my anxiety if I knew you had received it. It you could check that would be great. At least I would know it hadn’t gone to someone else. I thought maybe it went to Spam or Junk.

    Many thanks,


    1. Yes I have it – it came to me and no one else can see it. I just haven’t made it all the way through my inbasket yet! Thank you for reading and writing and listening and reaching out and all the things!


  4. I’ve been listening to The Bubble Hour for about six months now. It has been transformative for me. I attribute this podcast to my recovery, as I identify as a loner “so to speak.” But I will say this…

    I have yet to hear from somebody my age. I am 27 years old, no children, educated (masters…yikes). I have tried every avenue of recovery. I live in the mid-west where God dominates…yet fails to resonate with me, and that’s where I find trouble with 12-step programs. My minor was religious studies and I find it hard to ascribe to the “god thing.”

    I’d be happy to discuss this with you! If you want?!

    And if not, thank you for existing. You have been a companion of mine for months now and I can’t tell how valuable that has been.

    Thank you…


    1. Hi Steph, I’d love to have you share your story on a The Bubble Hour – thank you for reaching out. If you message me via The Bubble Hour’s Facebook page we can set that up. Congrats on six months of recovery!


  5. I just started reading your blog and started from the beginning because that is where i am – again, as so many times before. My struggle has been one, all of my drinking career, which has been long. I have a job,home, dog and great friends and won’t send folks “running from the room” when i meet them but I know the quality of my life going forward depends on my sobriety at 60. I have had great fun in my relationship with alcohol but great sorrow outweighs any fun ever had. I have had tragic things happen in my life as a direct result of my drinking. One would think I would have stopped for good but I haven’t . I did stop for two years once. Most of the time it’s hidden well. I have been selective on who knows I even drink.

    I am not a daily drinker – now, but I also have rarely had just one glass and enjoy white or red, depending on the season. No discrimination here. I also want the bottle. I am committed to quitting and am on Day 6. No issues so far but I will miss my friend soon. This is the first time I have read blogs that I can actually relate to. I am so grateful that you write with so much optimism.

    I have a strong faith in God and know this is what he wants from me and for me. Thank you for sharing. One day I will share my story.


  6. Troubled. I am 53. Was once self employed which was the best! Until the economy took a dump and dumped me into retail. Lousy reason to start drinking. Yes. At home. Alone or when the family came over. Not sloppy drunk or hangover drunk but a good buzz. I had my “stop”. And I still do. I’m married on my way to a divorce if I don’t stop. This last year I’ll drink and drive. Me and my secret bottle of vodka straight up. Ugh it tastes horrible. What’s up with that I ask myself allll the time but I do it anyway. Dangerous destructive behavior. My husband works law enforcement. Omg. I’ve been married 35 years and I’m tossing it away. Meetings just give me headaches because I can’t quit crying. They aren’t for me. I need to walk this walk myself and hopefully some new friends


    1. Hi KimberlyMontana, thank you so much for posting. Your addiction is headed into a dangerous dangerous zone where things could become unmanageable very quickly. Please do go after whatever you need to become alcohol free – it is the best thing you can do for yourself and I promise that once you get through the hard beginning it becomes a life of abundance, not lack. If you need help finding resources, please send me a private message via UnPickled on Facebook. You deserve better than this, you deserve freedom and peace. Alcohol isn’t giving you that anymore. Addiction is not your fault but recovery is your responsibility.


  7. Sooooo back at it. It’s been 2 weeks after a really cutting back last year. I’m freaking out although it’s more than physically possible. I can’t imagine life w/o drinking as it’s everywhere. From the school auctions to all the mom’s nights out…. I’m in a state of panic now that I know, for sure, that I can’t drink again. How do you mamas cope?


  8. I’m on day 13 and hope it turns into day 10,013. I tried A.A. in the past and it just wasn’t for me. Last time I got sober, I stayed that way for almost 18 years. Then I got married. So anyway, after almost 14 years of increasingly alcoholic drinking (with short breaks of sobriety), I’m ready to stop…just stop.


    1. I’ve been sober for almost 2yrs 4-21-16. Cold turkey no treatment no meetings nothing.
      you can message me
      Christine Ballmes if you need someone the talk too.


  9. Hi Jean,

    On March 28, 2017, I unknowingly had had my last drink for just over 10 months, until last night. I wasn’t feeling anything I didn’t want to feel. I simply just wanted to drink. As I sit here writing this, I know my heart and my soul want recovery, but I don’t think AA is working for me. I began listening to your podcast over the summer and I have really enjoyed hearing your story and stories of others in recovery. I remember the first time hearing that people can get sober without AA and not understanding how that was possible. I was told I needed to go to AA to stay sober. I am told that I need to go to a meeting – just about every day. I am overwhelmed with that weight load and it’s wearing me down. It’s not that I want to do this on my own, I just don’t like being told I “have” to do something in order to sustain my sobriety. Over these past 10 months, I had used another substance which in AA terms, I wasn’t sober. Having to change my sobriety date really broke me – it was like my abstinence from alcohol wasn’t good enough. Someone in the rooms had said me to “Maybe you’re not ready yet”. That still resonates with me. I do want sobriety but I think I need another way, another way that will work for me. For about 10 months, I was regularly going to meetings and I don’t feel that I have made any solid friendships. I need to be able to connect with others, not just to stay sober, but to live. I want to grow, learn and see the world. I feel confined by opinions and judgments in the rooms. I don’t even think it’s the principles or the steps, because I know they can make my life better and the promises that AA offers will come true if I work for them. However, I feel I “need” and “have” to do certain things in order to maintain my stance in AA. My sobriety is for me, it isn’t for anyone else.

    Today I am starting over, not that everything I have accomplished in these past 10 months is washed away. But I need something that will work for me and I am more than willing to try other outlets.

    Thank you for showing me that there are other ways to stay sober – that there isn’t just one way. You have given me hope.



  10. Thank you for being here. I’ve been binging on the Bubble Hour in recent weeks. This is my first time on the blog. I want to begin at the beginning because I am beginning, again, with sobriety. I’ve had a bunch of day ones. My most recent day one was Thanksgiving and I got to 30 days. Then I drank again, dammit. Now, I begin again. I plan to protect my sobriety more carefully this time around.
    I am a 55 year old, professional, wife, and mother of three (ages 10-19). Until I was 45, I was a normal drinker. I’ve spent the last decade slowly ramping up from a glass of wine every night as I cooked dinner to daytime, secret gin drinking recently. I use alchohol to cope with the stress of my everyday life. Unfortunately, alcohol has become yet another source of stress — giving me very short lived relaxation (numbing) but so much more shame and regret and anxiety.
    The souces of my stress are all about family dynamics and not something to detail here and now.

    I have no trouble not drinking in social situations – I’ve got great friends and the support of my husband and all four of my older brothers, all of whom are in recovery. So….I’ve got some powerful tools in my kit. What I don’t have is a good track record of taking care of myself. In fact, I’ve reached the point where the only thing I do each day that I enjoy, or look forward to is drinking. It’s the way I numb how utterly sick I am to taking care of eveyone and everything else….and yet i keep doing it! If I was a party drinker, I would stop going to parties. Home is where I drink, and I can’t stop being at home
    At this point, I am not interested in AA but I know I need a sober community. I’ll explore the resources you list as I start making my way again.
    Do you know which, if any, of the other bloggers and or podcasts include middle-age, menopasual, mothers in early recovery? It feels like eveyone else must have gotten their act together by this age…instead of falling apart at this age.
    Here’s to the start of day two, 2.0.


    1. Hi Joy – you are not alone! There are tons of women our age who are realizing it’s time to stop coping and start LIVING. If you pop over to my Facebook page and click on “send message” I’ll connect you with a group I think will be perfect!


    2. Hi Joy
      You sound just like me, reassuring to know I’m not the only one trying to get out of this ‘pickle’! Woke up this morning with such guilt and remorse, my girls deserve more than what I am giving them. I made an appointment today at a clinic, I’m terrified and very private. But I can’t do this on my own.


  11. I’m so glad to find this blog! I feel that there is some hope. I have been trying unsuccessfully for the last 4 months. 1 step forward and 2 steps back. My dear husband and 2 kids (18 and 21) are at the end of their rope. Lying deceit and broken promises. I so want to get to the other side of this nightmare. I so want to live happily without alcohol.


  12. Happy New Year! And it is a NEW Year:) It was the discovery of the Bubble Hour that got me on track to making a decision to change the chaos that my drinking life had become. It wasn’t fun anymore but I couldn’t stop. Lonely, sad, bloated, depressed and so not content. But I kept drinking to numb out and not face it. The ladies on the Bubble Hour spoke the words I couldn’t and didn’t even know, but when I heard them…they were me. I swore off AA meetings years ago, but now I go to 2 womens AA meetings a week and I look forward to them! Just celebrated 28 days without alcohol. Im on this journey and glad to not have to go it alone anymore. Alone I failed. Now I feel hope. God Bless all who journey this road as well.


  13. Hello,

    My name is Laura and I read a couple of your articles and think they are great! I represent Awakenings for Women in Boca Raton and wanted to reach out and share some of our articles and blog material with you. We have over 20 plus years in the treatment industry and we write content about drug abuse and alcohol addiction. I would love to inquire about providing content to you for a link feature on your website. Please let me know who I can speak to about this.


    Thank you and hope to hear from you soon,



  14. I have stopped drinking many times; for a year, few months, weeks. Now I seem to be in this pattern of drinking wine about every 4 or 5 days. I live alone and work at home. I start drinking whenever I feel like it. Always 3/4 bottle of wine, no more or less. I have said to myself so many times, “that’s it, I’m not drinking anymore!’ and then within a week I seem to have amnesia and buy some wine. I don’t trust my word and I don’t really know how to quit now. I do not relate to AA, Most people don’t think I have a problem. I know about scheduling my days, exercising, eating well, making plans etc to avoid being alone and I am doing this more. I just joined a gym. But how do I really, really commit and follow through??

    Thank you for any comments and suggestions.


  15. I just discovered this site and part of me wants to stop drinking, and part of me loves to drink. I’m conflicted and don’t know how to “want to” stop. Any advice?


    1. Hi Katie,

      It sounds like you are awakening to the idea that something is not quite right. I wrote about the “stages of change” in this post https://unpickledblog.com/2014/06/08/how-i-knew-it-was-time-to-quit-drinking/ and if you read that you might identify as moving from precontemplation to contemplation, and you are asking how to get from there to preparation. I encourage you to dig into “contemplation” – think about the benefits of living alcohol free, take not of the compromises you are making for the sake of alcohol, list the pros and cons of continuing to drink and of stopping, and read read read everything you can. Talk to people in recovery, so you know what it is really like. I thought it would be boring and sad, but it is the opposite. Drinking wine alone now seems boring and sad, while being alcohol free gives me back the choices and options I had sacrificed for the sake of numbing out alone at night. Spend some time envisioning the person you want to be in one, five, ten, twenty years from now, and honestly consider if booze will bring you closer or further from that vision. Keep in touch, and ask me and these readers anything.


  16. Thanks for the fast reply,made it through another day,some family problems nearly pushed me a beer,but deep breaths,and diet soda got me by,I’m quite a private person,and don’t know if a meeting with other people would help,so hoping that posting on this site will help.


  17. Second day of not drinking,have tried before,but when I woke up yesterday,seemed to have the right mindset to do it,drinking about 6 to 8 beers a day,do have a lot of problems at moment,thinking drinking was helping,but of course it’s not,so I’m going to have a real go of not drinking,don’t really have no one to talk to,so it’s been nice to read the blogs on hereaaa


    1. Hi Andy, I’m glad you’re here. You are so right that drinking makes things worse, not better. At the very least it prolongs problems, because we have to deal with them eventually. Going alcohol-free will give you more clarity and strength to face the world head-on. It’s important to find people to talk to who are in the same boat, it increases your chances of success exponentially. That’s what meetings and programs are for – please consider checking some out. And keep posting and interacting here – there’s a wealth of knowledge in the brilliant readers who comment back and forth! I love this community and learn so much from every comment. Thank you for making UnPickled part of your sober efforts. Keep us all posted on your progress and all you learn along the way!


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