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Stefanie Wilder-Taylor on Loving and Leaving Alcohol

On this episode of Passion Struck, host John R. Miles sits down with Stefanie Wilder-Taylor, author and TV personality, to discuss her journey of loving and leaving alcohol through her new memoir “Drunk-ish.” Stephanie shares her experiences with alcohol, from her early introduction to it in high school to how motherhood influenced her drinking habits. She opens up about the pivotal moment that led her to quit drinking for good and the challenges she faced along the way. Join us as we delve into Stefanie’s inspiring narrative of recovery and self-realization.

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The problem was that once I have some wine, like more seems better to me. Oh, I feel good. I’ve had a glass of wine. You know what? Two would be a little better. Oh, I’ve had two glasses of wine. Now I’m really starting to feel relaxed. Well, you know what would be better? Three. And it’s just like, I just don’t have an off switch.

Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

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A Journey of Transformation and Sobriety with Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

Stefanie Wilder-Taylor, a comedian and author, opens up about her relationship with alcohol and how motherhood influenced her drinking habits in an interview on the Passion Struck podcast. Stefanie shares that she first started drinking in high school, finding solace and a sense of belonging in alcohol. As she entered motherhood, she noticed that her drinking increased, using it as a way to cope with the stress and demands of parenting. However, she began questioning her relationship with alcohol after a particularly drunken Halloween night, when she realized that she didn’t want to be a “drunk mom.”

Stefanie reflects on her past experiences with alcohol, including blackouts, brutal hangovers, and risky behaviors like driving under the influence. She admits to rationalizing her drinking and making rules for herself to try to control it but ultimately finds it difficult to stick to those rules. It wasn’t until a pivotal moment when she got drunk at a gathering with her children present and faced the consequences of her actions that she decided to seek help and quit drinking for good.

The interview delves into the challenges of separating one’s public identity from the social aspect of drinking, particularly in the context of motherhood. Stefanie shares her own experience of building a brand around being a “wine mom” and the realization that her drinking was negatively impacting her life and relationships. She emphasizes the importance of self-reflection and recognizing the signs that one’s drinking may be problematic.

Stefanie’s story serves as a reminder that alcoholism can take many forms and that recovery is a personal journey. She offers insights into the struggles she faced and the steps she took to overcome her dependence on alcohol. Through her memoir, “Drunkish,” Stefanie aims to challenge the normalization of problematic drinking behaviors and shed light on the perils of relying on substances to navigate the challenges of life, particularly in the context of motherhood.

Key insights from the episode:

  • Recognizing the right moment to embrace sobriety and proactively setting a personal threshold for change before experiencing severe loss.
  • Transitioning away from a public persona that is closely tied to one’s identity.
  • Understanding the unique manifestations of alcoholism, acknowledging that it does not conform to a singular stereotype.
  • Addressing a range of compulsive behaviors and substance abuse issues, such as overindulgence in food, sugar, narcotics, and digital distractions, and their impact on dopamine levels.
  • Implementing effective strategies and tools to transform mental perspectives and establish lasting sobriety.
  • Successfully managing ‘firsts’ in sobriety, including holidays, social gatherings, professional events, romantic encounters, and happy hours.
  • Confronting the underlying fears, anxieties, and traumas that fuel and sustain alcohol or substance misuse and harmful behaviors.
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Passion Struck Podcast
391 | The Journey of Loving and Leaving Alcohol | Stefanie Wilder-Taylor | Passion Struck with John R. Miles

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Quote by Stefanie Wilder-Taylor from episode 391 of Passion Struck “I think some of those same reasons that I drank in the past came back once I had my daughter. Even though I had struggled a lot with being somebody who drank too much or being unpredictable with alcohol, I never thought of myself as having a drinking problem for real.”

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Embracing Your Firsts in Sobriety: A Guide Inspired by Stefanie Wilder-Taylor’s Journey

In her candid and humor-laced memoir, “DRUNK-ISH: Loving and Leaving Alcohol,” Stefanie Wilder-Taylor narrates her tumultuous relationship with alcohol, offering insights and inspirations for those embarking on their sobriety journey. This guide, drawing from her experiences and revelations, focuses on navigating ‘firsts’ in sobriety – a series of milestones that can be both challenging and rewarding.

1. Preparing for Holiday Celebrations

Drunk-ish by Stefanie Wilder-Taylor for the Passion Struck recommended books
  • Plan Ahead: Anticipate triggers and have a response ready.
  • Bring Your Own Drinks: Non-alcoholic options can be a great alternative.
  • Seek Support: Connect with someone who understands your journey.

2. Navigating Social Gatherings

  • Set Boundaries: It’s okay to decline invitations if you’re not ready.
  • Have an Exit Strategy: If you feel overwhelmed, know it’s okay to leave.
  • Focus on Connections: Engage in meaningful conversations instead of focusing on drinks.

3. Professional Events and Networking

  • Reframe the Context: Focus on the professional opportunity, not the social aspect.
  • Stay Hydrated: Opt for water or a non-alcoholic beverage to keep your hands occupied.
  • Practice Responses: Have a polite, non-explanatory response ready if asked about not drinking.

4. Romantic Encounters Without Alcohol

  • Be Open: Honesty about your sobriety can build deeper connections.
  • Choose Sober Activities: Plan dates that don’t center around drinking.
  • Trust Your Instincts: If a situation feels uncomfortable, it’s okay to step back.

5. Enjoying Happy Hours Differently

  • Rediscover Happy Hour: Explore cafes or venues that offer a relaxed, alcohol-free environment.
  • Celebrate Small Wins: Each successful outing is a step forward in your sobriety.
  • Bring a Friend: Having a supportive buddy can make a significant difference.

The Power of Connection and Reassurance

Stefanie Wilder-Taylor’s journey in “DRUNK-ISH” is a powerful testament to the strength and resilience required for sobriety. Her story, especially her overcoming the stigma attached to the label ‘Alcoholic,’ serves as a beacon of hope and reassurance. Embracing your ‘firsts’ in sobriety is not just about abstaining from alcohol; it’s about rediscovering joy, building authentic connections, and, most importantly, understanding that you are not alone in this journey.

Thanks, Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

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Resources From The Show With Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Passion Struck podcast receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you so much for being so supportive!

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  9. Want to learn the 12 philosophies that the most successful people use to create a limitless life? Pre-order John R. Miles’s new book, Passion Struck, which will be released on February 6, 2024.

Take a look at my solo episode on 7 Reasons Why Acts Of Kindness Are More Than Meets The Eye:

Watch my interview with Dr. Elise Hallerman On the journey to Soulbriety:

Catch my interview with Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad On How To Navigate Isolation, Loneliness, And Its Impact On Health:

My solo episode on The Science Of Healthy Habits:

About Today’s Guest, Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

Passion Struck album cover with Stefanie Wilder-Taylor Episode about her memoir Drunk-ish The Journey of Loving and Leaving Alcohol

Stefanie Wilder-Taylor is a multifaceted creative professional, known for her work as a writer, television figure, and podcast co-host. She brings her unique voice to the podcast “For Crying Out Loud,” much to the delight of her listeners. In television, she made her mark with the innovative late-night show “Parental Discretion with Stefanie Wilder-Taylor,” aired on NickMom via Nickelodeon, blending comedy and parenting insights. As an author, she has penned several titles including “Sippy Cups Are Not for Chardonnay,” “Naptime Is the New Happy Hour,” “It’s Not Me, It’s You,” “I’m Kind of a Big Deal,” and “Gummi Bears Should Not Be Organic,” each showcasing her witty and relatable perspective on life and parenting.

Her expertise and charisma have led to appearances on notable shows like Good Morning America, 20/20, The Dr. Oz Show, Dr. Phil, Larry King Live, and the Today show. Residing in Los Angeles, she balances her professional life with personal joys, living with her husband, their three wonderful teenage children, and their beloved dog, Penelope.

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