107: Women For Sobriety: Adrienne Miller shares A Unique Support Program for Women Who Want to Stop Drinking.
You're listening to the sober soul recovery podcast and this is Lynn Mattie the sober therapist episode number one. Oh seven welcome to the sober soul recovery. Podcast here we shine a little light on the overuse of alcohol and drugs as a way of coping with our everyday stress. Each week will explore ways to start to build a master a sober life that you don't need to escape from. Hey everyone oh my goodness this virus thing is getting to us all isn't it? I think we all need to take a deep breath in realized life is going to be a change in for a minute or so with that in mind. I just want you all to remember that I do have online services that is a base of what I do for both sober so recovery and online therapy for Lynn Maddie counseling. You can reach out to me. At Lynn at sober. So recovery dot net. If you'd like to inquire about these services especially during this time when some of US might be homebound for awhile you know. I'm here for you okay. Today we have Adrienne Miller. Who is a woman for Sobriety board member she is also the president and CEO of this fabulous institution? That's been around for a very long time. She's going to share with US. Some of her own history and how she came to recovery in. I'm really thrilled to have her. Because they've asked me to be a keynote speaker along with Don Nicole from she recovers this year the conference that they hold annually. This year is in June June twelfth through the fourteenth in fact and it's being held in your day. Minneapolis Saint Paul at Hamline University. You can get lots of information on the website. We'll give it to you throughout the podcast as well at women for Sobriety Dot Org. Adrian is a superfund guest. We have lots of giggles but the most important part is always is we share with you. Lots of good information about they women for Sobriety Organization the new life programme which is their style their program recovery including the except in statements that they use which are in tastic. I think you're really going to like them. Along with some other information like the levels of recovery and how you can get involved on line. They had the longest running online program for women on the interwebs. Really good information about that. So without further ADO to Dow. Let's get started welcome. Adrian am so happy to have you on the podcast talk about women for sobriety because it has been something that I've been interested in since I worked at Hazel Bitty Ford in Minnesota and had talked about a with my clients. I'm really excited to get into the meat of women for Sobriety. So welcome thank you. Thank you for having me. I'm excited to talk to you today. Yeah Yeah so one of the first things I'd like to ask you about is your own recovery. Since I don't have a lot of people on the podcast talking about their own experience. It's always good for my listeners to hear About other people in recovery. So can you tell us a little bit about your journey or a little bit about my journey which I don't talk a lot about my exit. Might started really like a lot of people's I was you know. Thirteen or fourteen and I was experiencing so pretty traumatic events in in my personal life and I fell in with the quote unquote wrong crowd. And you know when people talk about the wrong crowd with the kids What they're forgetting usually is that those her kids with Rama night You know one of my friends with you. Know throwing herself in front of her father so her her little sisters wouldn't get beat and And you know that kind of thing that we were all kids going through trauma Seeking Comfort in relief and drugs and alcohol are pretty good at comforting and relieving the symptoms of trauma when we when we got loaded. We could just be kids again And we kind of forget about all that other stuff that was going on. So That's how my addiction started and it's just kind of bloomed from there and about thirty years old. I had gotten a lot of things in my life together I had given up most harder drugs but I was still doing a lot of Alcohol and marijuana and I had gone back to school and I was actually in a program in medical school. Wow Yeah so. There's an accomplishment right. There getting drunk and high every night while going to medical school could fit into that definition of high functioning that we yeah. That was pretty high functioning Tell it wasn't right and a month before graduation on the program director came to me and said you know Ingraham Really to wear with you on your depression and your anxiety and what you've been experiencing. We're not sure that we want to award you. This degree and say that you're ready to go out into the world that worked with patients. We want you to stay in class today. But we may not awarding your degree in a month. That was kind of a Gut Punch. Yeah yes so. That was Got Panch devastating. You know however you want to say it in my mind. At that time I really had to choice. As an and these were the only choices I saw and one was bridge and one was check myself in for some men and those were really the only throughout I saw so at that point. I was still really conceptualize as a mental health issue and rather than going proper myself in the psychiatric ward at. That is what you choose. Yes yes I feel like that was a really good choice as well At took another nine months to really convince myself that the exile and the oppression Were were not being treated anymore by the drugs and alcohol but the drugs and alcohol were really exacerbating that mental health issue that I was experiencing. Yeah so it's a tough transition isn't it? It really is And you know they. I think you know the alcohol were good medication in the beginning. I don't know that I would have gotten through the trauma that I was going through as an adolescent. I'm without them but definitely they had turned a corner and we're no longer helpful and and we're actually quite harmful and destructive. I knew I started realizing that I needed to get over and I started to look at all the different options that were available to support me in that and I found the little known program called women for riding and vary based in kind of metaphysics and of actualization and Cognitive behavioral principles. You know I am what I think and The the first eight man is. I have a life threatening problem that once had me and I really wanted to be able to say I had control over this thing right and feel empowered in that way and I also told me that happiness with habit that I could develop that also really spoke to me because I was just snow. Miserable right see. Look at any other types of recovery programs and I think my listeners are especially interested in how people choose to recover because there's now more than ever so many choices out there So do you remember how you started searching I think I started by searching Google. Like Non Twelve. Step recovery honestly. Yeah Yeah I and I read about a you know I think I I read the twelve steps at at some point and they just they and land with me at all I really didn't have any sense of higher power in my life at Bat. You know I was kind of raised in this metaphysical church where it's like God is God. Is the trees got? You're the you're the your God. Everything's God which by the way I kinda love. I'm just so for me. The higher power concept really fit. Because I if I'm gone you're God then there's no higher there's no hierarchy or I just kinda looked for other things and I I really. I had some good cognitive behavioral therapy on my background. So the smart stuff. I really liked smart recovery. Because we'll say it was very cerebral and I was really frying intellectualize. My and I love it to grow. Yeah but I I just I went to a couple smart meetings but I didn't find community there and I think that was the piece that was missing for me for smart. I didn't really find much else. There was actually a writing for a recovery group That was not part of a national program. It was just a group that was offered at a local community center and I really liked that group so I that group as well And in fact a I got divided started leading that group when the remember what it was called or is it still around. No it's not still around. It was called shifting words at the pound. That's fascinating I never heard of that. Yeah and then when I and then it went away and I restarted it About a year after stopped and I call the healing words because I wanted to open it up for anyone healing from anyone from anything anyone in this was in white here also because I you know. It's so curious to me that you took on this leadership role of trying to find something new and inventive a new way to recover. So do you remember what year that was? That was cute thousand nine. So right on this kind of cusp of a facebook and everything else. Coming out online and Other people I mean. Had you noticed that other people were talking about recovery or was this just all on social media or did was all through kind of googling googling and and I had been you know the the people at the hospital were actually quite convinced that I had substance use disorder and they referred me artistic So the treatment agent had actually referred me to this bright in group love that yeah yeah it was it was fabulous group and I try. I tried a number of different things that I kind of As she recovers says it kind of put together my own password a recovery but wouldn't sobriety. I really found that community. It was just a community of women. That were Josh One of our statements is you know I am what I think and the thought action. The second part of that statement is capable competent carrying compassionate and and I just found so much compassion in that meeting and so much love that I wasn't ready to show myself. Yeah I did you know. I went to a lot of different meetings. Aa Meetings for first year are to supplement. And I've always kept women I bride as like my primary program. I think we all need to know. I don't think anyone program is going to be everything to anyone. I agree so I did a lot of therapy on a lot of different things. Yeah Somehow I managed to put together a weeks ago. I celebrated ten years. Congratulations Joann Saint you wonderful. I'm right behind you in June. Wow great accomplishment 'cause thinking those milestones of like five and ten Not necessarily for everybody but for the people that I kinda hang with. My sobriety are very meaningful. Yeah Yeah it was a big accomplishment and to look back now in my role in women for sobriety and I'm thinking like ten years ago I had to count back the find the day of my last drink and in this day. I don't know for sure that might sobriety. Date is actually might sobriety date. Because I was so convinced at the time that it wasn't gonNA keep I was. I was struggling so much. The is not noting the last date that I used or drank because it I wasn't convinced it was going to stick with. It is quite a miracle of sorts for me to go. Oh I've been sober over ten years. Have I think so too? Congratulations you can you tell me a little bit more about how you transition from. You know knowing that this women for sobriety was your vehicle main vehicle for recovery and then kind of getting into the leadership role that you are you find yourself in now. Well it happened very gradually over time. we we do have their requirement that you have to have a one year of continuous sobriety fuel lead a WAFS meeting so after after the the sobriety starting to stick I'd start Ed marking time so that I could get to that one year mark come. We only had one meeting in the entire city of Seattle. I thought well we definitely have at least meeting so I made my goal yet one year so that I could start a second meeting in the city of Seattle though I did that at the one year mark and then unfortunately the other woman who is leading meeting had been the only one for five or six years. He stepped down shortly after that. So then I would. We had A. We have an annual conference as you know and I would go to that each year I would go on work scholarship so I kind of got snow The staff a little bit more in that way and then they started asking me to workshops. I led a couple of workshops at the conference on us. Yeah leading one again this year so I am. Yes kind of a work shopping. Kinda you know Since an opportunity for people to come ask questions about the organization which we've had requests for over the air so But I started leading up to then. Somehow I had I served on another board of directors and. I don't think I was really looking for board service added time but I was invited to WanNa i Brian Board and you know I. I really wanted contribute fast in a meaningful way and from my other board service. I knew that you could really do that as a board member and I joined the Board I think around twenty sixteen then and one eighty seven in twenty seventeen yet. Twenty seven being in a twenty seventeen. We had been working on a number of initiatives Kind of bring some things on the back end up to date and materials and that kind of thing and The Board decided It would be a good idea to bring in. You know a contractor kind of help with some of the things that the regular staff were having. They're trying to do so. I moved out to quaker town on a one year project manager contract and then of course they had to resign from the board so it wasn't on the board at that point anymore quakertown into these special projects are now We had a volunteer president at the time. The board decided we probably make this debate position at really quite a bit. Since I was there anyways I went ahead and applied and ultimately they ended up hiring me for the position in the end of summer of Twenty eight feet and I've been serving as the president for about a year and a half now and it's been a great experience when my big passions is kind of disseminating leadership and empowering the women of this program to run the program and to really have a very active voice in the management of the program and how how were racing out Very and all that so. It's really an exciting crime. It'd be involved in it As me a lot of work because it's a big culture shift right right but it's great. Yeah I've noticed your profile. Not You're not only your personal profile raising But just women for Sobriety in general because when I started I went back to school when I was forty eight at Hazelden Betty Ford Graduate School and it wasn't even in the list of mutual aid groups for all I mean it was in some of our less because the different courses we had different instructors would give us information on what was out there so it was on some people's lists but not others and I noticed the shift then when I'm began practice seen after my training that it definitely became something that we talked about in this was around two thousand fourteen As part of not only what would we recommend people go to a but women for Sobriety and a twelve step? Yoga was coming out in. Minneapolis at that time as well so I think that has really taken off in the last few years. Has THAT SHIFT. Ben Part of one of the things that you wanted to move along in your for the organization. I was on another podcast and I said you know she asked what what you're along from. Golfer whimpers Friday. My long term goal is that every woman in the world no in available to her. Yeah Yeah so not a small not a small dreamer share. I can't get credit for anything that happened in twenty four eighty I will extend that credit out to the women in the MINNESOTA Minneapolis Saint Paul area. They are phenomenal. Women who've done just a phenomenal job of reaching out to the local statement community and making sure that everyone knows that they are there they have you know I think six meetings a week now in that area so they get the credit for a lot of that. I think another thing that is really helps maintain relevance of Women Bridie as we are women. Nancy costs who his posthumously paying for online community Jarred it back in one thousand nine hundred ninety ninety six hundred thing that night. Yeah yeah she was just a visionary started on AOL. I kid you not Diallo. Yeah are the first Dhabi F S online support community. What's up? Aol and cheese started a huge online community. And it is going wrong today and and that's really nice. You know because we are a smaller program. We're not as well known. It's accessible for women. All over the world. We have women in Australia. Ireland you know all over the place participating in that online community and I think that has a really credit nancy for having the foresight as the also donated A good chunk of money to help that continues so really honor Nancy's memory. I'm in that way will before we get into the new life programme which is is the structure of how you walk women through principles of sobriety or recovery. Tell us how to access your. Obviously you have an online a strong online presence. Can you tell us more about that? Yes so our main website Women for Sobriety Dot Org Is it has the basic information about the program. So it's got our thirteen acceptance statements and an overview of levels of her cavalry on and then some of the general program information that's really the informational website for the organization. There's also bookstore there on to order. Some of our programming aerials and then our online community is abuse F S Online Dot. Org so wfan's women sobriety online dot. Org and that is our cure support community. So you do have to register for it. you have to promise that you're a woman and you know we do look at those registrations Not Deeply but we do try to eyeball them and make sure that it is a safe community and that is that a great Resource for anyone anywhere. Then we also do have face to face. Meaning that listing on our main website women sobriety dot org and you just click on the meeting finder links and you can search buyers account and see if there's meeting in your arena and there's not a meeting in your area and you really don't like the online being a. I say give online pants because a lot of women who don't like the online thing end up liking it. Right option is we also have support mauling skirts and they. They've volunteered to receive calls for women in recovery. Looking to get started in the new life programme in is that accessible twenty four seven or how do you meet the needs of those people? 'cause I get these emails from people three o'clock in the morning reaching out for help because I do remember that's kind of when I needed it the most as well. You know our phone support. Holland cheers at home Volunteered take phone calls down appreciate phone calls at Am and have a twenty four hour line. women just will reach out Either by email or phone we can. We can connect them who volunteer. We give them the phone number of volunteered and what relationship. They'd Sabella if those women WanNa take calls at three a m They may and they give permission for that I know that when you're on your website The community website do have that kind of support. There's almost always someone on there. 'cause women in Australia there three. Am In there. There's probably an Aussie signed an you know someone in India are you know there's women all the world so there's usually support to be had on on the website awesome. Yeah so how'd they end up going to join that website? Is it a free service or you know it's free? It's fast online dot org okay and you just register you just you know you have to do the email confirmation and I'm you set up your low profile and it can be a you know as as anonymous as you want these. Let the User David. I'm tank girl online. What is it tank girl? It's kind of A. It's a shout out to an old comic book from the Nineties I was a little punk rock back in my day for those of you out there. You're so says I have no idea kind of scaring a lot of people get some people writing me that they totally understand also well. Let's get into the details about the program and you know what is it all about. How do you help women of the program is we are our thoughts brain and so? I'm thinking I'm a pretty terrible person. I might want to self medicate. Those thoughts right Mike wanted to self soothe if I make. Hey I'm a competent woman. I can do things I you know. I know how to navigate the world. I'm you know I'm not bad looking her. I you know I'm I can do great things then. Then maybe I'm not gonNA need years alcohol and drugs to self medicate so the real parts of the program is changing our thoughts primarily about ourselves but also about the world and about the way we approach problems To be more more proactive. And more of yeah. I think you covered these see words. Are there four? There's four sees if you if you join US online. You will see foresee woman capable competent caring and compassionate free words Yeah and I think that convinced myself that I was those things exactly and you know In my book I wrote about confidence and self esteem and the inner critic you know. It hasn't always been labeled the inner critic but for Millennium it has been in the psyche of all of us humans. Is this voice that we come about through our caregivers and we internalize this voice and somehow we ended up believing everything that this voice says. Who isn't our voice. It is in our intuition. It isn't our you know our instinct is just this voice in our head that we believe is being truthful with us and what this voice is meant to do is keep us safe in the real old school manner of keeping us safe through fight fight or free is so. I love this approach of those foresees because that's everything that I work with clients on you know to be compassionate with yourself to you. Know be Courageous I don't know if that was one of the season that suggested that we add that one looks a lot of lemon fixed. Seven sees that they like to work with and that's fine. We think you know as many positive adjectives. You want to attach to yourself. That's what you should do. But Doug really overcome this voice and with our own intuitive holistic self to really understand who we are and let that person reemerge or emerge for the first time in my case. My nephew know what our first the levels of recovery recovery can't talking about the levels without thinking about statement for a little bit the accepts. The statements are kind of they're the real base of the program and there are thirteen. Basically affirmations help a woman. Develop this more proactive competent compassionate outlook on life And then As as the program has evolved people started. Want a little bit more of a chronological order to work their recovery time and Dan Patrick. Our founder Who who passed away. Many years ago was starting to organize the statements and through the levels of the levels. Kind of. They're just a bit more chronological so I think of the statements as our guide to everyday thinking and living in the levels are guide for overall recovering. So when I'm feeling stuck or I'm feeling like I've maybe backpedaled a little bit which we all do because we are as you said human and humans fluctuate. I'll go to the level so they'll go okay with Lamela my aunt right now and sometimes. I'm all the way back. Down to level hugh and there's levels growth us back level to and it's it's all about discarding negative a leading the Pasco. I'm feeling there. I make move out in on a spectrum right. I mean I think that's the important Nugget that we're finally becoming clear about in regards to all things in life that nothing is black and white in fact black and white thinking is a form of distorted thinking so I love this. Some people don't like level because they feel to chronological them. Okay and I say fine. Just go with statements. Statements are really the core. So what are they? Well there long I could. I could read them all excite them all thirteen of them and so they have. The first part is the affirmation. So it's what we believe. For example on our first one is I have a life-threatening problem. That was had me. I just love that second. Part is the thought action. And that's what we think and do in order to internalize the belief so the thought action statement one is. I now take parts of my life and my wellbeing. I accept the responsibility so by taking the responsibility for my life and my wellbeing I really gained control over this problem that used to have me this life threatening problem used to have me. This is what I love most about. This program is that it is a statement like a two for one with every except in statement. You get this idea that we can connect around. I have a life-threatening problem. That once me and then you have a statement that helps you do something about that I'm thinking to practice. You know I love that. So much yeah. I think that you know the thought actions were added later on but for me the this evening for not standalone for me. The thought action is just as important as the statement. Because like you said it house me when I need to actually do I do like a little instruction by by need a little bit of structure. I think we all do. I think we hunger for that when we are you know over the years subjecting ourselves to chemical which takes us away from structure that obsessive part of any kind of addiction that makes us think in drive all of our behaviors to that end result of getting that soothing mechanism at the end of the day or whenever it is free you Yeah and that the other strengths that I really like about the statement is that they're not chronological. No you can work them in any order and some of our literature says to pick one for every day and move. Our literature says pick one and work on it for a week. Sometimes I mix and match like Oh pick one door gone for a week and then each day apply different one and see how they interact together and they all kind of feed each other right so like our statement and pursue is negative thoughts. Destroy only myself. I may have a really hard time stopping my negative thing. I made find really intrusive thoughts about my past coming in will luckily statement nine. All's me that the past is gone forever and the thought action for that is no longer and my victimized by my past I am a new woman so I can stock remix myself with thoughts of the past and if I am if I can work on that and work on redirected my thoughts When those intrusive thoughts comment about my past when I return his statement you and to work on the negative thoughts. It's going to be a little bit easier right because of already worked on Reprogramming some of that Past thoughts habit. So they're really Quite self directed in that way if I get stuck on one. I don't have to stay stuck on that statement. I can move to a different one and come back later and I can work on what I feel like. I need to work on time. Exactly and do you encourage some kind of daily ritual around this. Or how do you guide people through these acceptance statements conception? Is You Each morning you wake up fifteen minutes earlier than usual. I'm terrible that by like Yeah I in the morning. Some people do it later in the day an aside some time to read the statement and kind of again with yourself darker. Patrick referred to it as the period of mourning meditation. Because that's what worked for her. But really some fine zig and check in with yourself. Where am I right now in relation to these statements in often? When I do that it really helps me recognize which statement I need to work on because I will find myself with some real resistance you that statement wherever my residents lies. That's probably the statement. I'm going to work on. And then we read the statements preferably in the morning to kind of get your day started in the work with that statement throughout the day and kind of see the effect that it had on the day and then in the evening you reflect on that and a lot of women we journaling for that kind of say okay. Well you know I came up with this situation with my pas and it was you know thinking all these negative things about her. I stopped and I you know I kind of caught myself and thought of some more positive things like. Oh she's worried about this or came up with the alternative explanations for her behavior. That made me think more positively about her. And that had a good effect on my Jiang and so it's very kind of intentional. Application of this affirmations in the thought chance and then reflecting on them so we can really into our our brain. You know how this is kind of a more effective way to navigate through life. Yeah like a practice and I harp on this. All the time harpists such a terrible word but we really can't effectively change our way of doing things unless we practice certain techniques and figure out what were express over time you know and really in letting them in habits and flow through our lives more gradually at first. You know you don't have to run a marathon here all in one day but really to embrace and embody these words negative thoughts destroy only myself and sit with that thought and really understand that you know the action statement. My first conscious sober act is to reduce negatively in my life in that negative not is inside your head. Is that part of you know? Does that flow with what you're thinking is as well. Yeah and that statement. Is You know primarily about what's going on in my head. The how am I interpreting this in the most negative light? And how can I change? The way I interpret things he'd be more positive. Yeah and The word conscious shows multiple times and the statements and it really does take conscious practice as a Any habit an especially are thought patterns Yeah the the cracks program is. It's really restructuring our thoughts to be more helpful to US rather than hurtful as you said in in addiction. Usually our thoughts are pretty negative. And self destructive yeah like Old School Addiction. Therapy was all based around resentment. And you know and resentments are where it's going to take you back to the drink and in essence that's correct but there's a whole bunch of stuff you know that comes before you reach that point of intense resentment in that. I break it down to awareness insight behavior change and we. I have to look at that like you said consciousness versus subconsciousness. We've done so much of our own behavior including believing our own thoughts for so very long that we don't even think about what it is that we're thinking about any longer we just behave around it and you know in the in that sequence that leads us to resentment and At the very beginning of that is an unmet and mostly unexpressed need which then flows directly into an expectation which then flows into especially. Because we don't get those expectations met most of the time when they're living inside of our heads as these thoughts. These negative thoughts they lead then to Rumination and somehow we think this route worry and rumination is part of our natural bead in. It is only part of our natural being when we're in fight flight or freeze. We worry about all the alternatives to safety. And that's essentially what your brain is doing so these statements kind've help you unlock that. Cote D. I look at them. Yeah that's that's a great way a look at it. Yeah like Matt another way to approach it because you know I can say it one way. I know you're a big Fan as I am Veronica Valley and she approaches it a different way and the beauty of taking all of these resources in is that one of these ways is going to finally be. You're a hommant. We don't know which one it is. You know. It really doesn't matter as long as you get that Aha moment and then you can take even more in in the sense of. Oh I get that now and so how can I practice more of this so just adding one more tool to your toolbox or I call it the buffer zone between you and and returning to your old way of life? Whatever that was really looking at what you can put in between you and that way that that way of thinking that way of behaving based on your thinking that took you away from yourself away from your self esteem from yours intuitive south and we're in a word the new life programme because you know our goal. Is that we build a new life. That doesn't have a place for alcohol and drugs right that I have sent a rich life of our level five is about relationships right and establishing positive and loving connections with others You know that I put things in my new life that may help a whole android esteem. I needed and like a really bad idea right because I have this rich full new life. That doesn't have a place alcohol and drugs and that's really where I am today. I I honestly can't imagine ever wanting to go back Occasionally I think as everyone in recovery does have those fleeting thoughts like you know. I really stressed out. Oh a treat sunk right now and catch it and I say we'll be ridiculous of course drake. Does it sound good right now? Because that's just a ridiculous and now I can recognize it as a ridiculous that I am. I can look at you know all the things that I have is ours to my life that that I want keep in that are a direct direct result of getting sober. Yeah so we really focused on building matinee neigh life and that's the one big difference between W Fest meetings and other types of meetings is that we are really focused on the present and our new life now and we don't do a lot of storytelling of how it was Naturally that comes up win especially when there's new women in the room her really struggling and we often will share some of our personal story to help her feel welcome and non alone but so many of our meetings our you know hey. This is the tools that I'm using day me and my new life and these are the challenges that I'm facing and overcoming in my new life rather than looking to the past. We really look more to the future and the present a lot of our interactions with I find really helpful as Jean debt. It doesn't take me very long to remember how bad it was in about thirty seconds. I can't recall work on remembering HEAP IN MY MIND is is how. I'm going see manifest in my new life that that doesn't need that and that that's just simply not art. I call those. You know euphoric recollections. When you're sitting around with a group of people and kind of cajoling each other about your worst thing that you did and sort of laughing about it. There's always that moment where you're like. Yeah you know I. I use humor a lot. I definitely used humor a lot. And sometimes you know you got to laugh at yourself at how ridiculous that thinking was but you know at a certain point it is just become triggering or you know a little bit denial. You know when we're oh that was so funny when I was you know when I couldn't get up that morning. Well that's not really funny. That's maybe exited sort of died that laughter dies out like a bad joke. Yeah Yeah I'm also a little curious. About how the new kind of new. It's not really new anymore. But the online World Environment. The recovery The recovery World Online. Meshes with what you're doing? Are you taking advantage of this burst of energy on line a little bit more about? Are you connecting to the online world? I think I know what you're asking. We're starting to build more connections. There was a lot of Housekeeping today when I first came on but you know obviously the online recovery world that has exploded and owed it. Yeah as we empower the women on this program we are really starting to build a lot more connections in the community is certainly that is a part of my work We Are we have some volunteers looking at establishing a facebook group We really were Pretty focused on our online forum. Which is its own website. is give a lot of privacy at people you know. A lot of people don't understand their facebook setting you know half the time. I don't understand my facebook settings and you know some people just aren't ready to join a recovery group on facebook and we have this separate area that's really reserved just for the women of our program and they don't have to worry about accidentally fearing something with the wrong group of very valuable but it is kind of its own little separate things. Were looking at getting mooring. You face of like facebook group And and building more connections with other other recovery resources because and there's so much out there right now and I was saying to the other the other night out you know recovery is become very trendy it a final and that's you know. I think it's short. I think it's wonderful and I think sometimes you know oh well I was sober for drag anuary and it's not hard. So what do you have a hard time with and that can be challenging to explain the differences between I celebrated dry January and it was really easy for me and you know I have a serious life threatening drinking problem that I you know at working very hard to counteract thing it in general and sober curious movement and all of online recovery and how women are really starting to recover out loud much more. I think it's going to be beneficial for everyone. I agree and the reason I asked you is because I am so impressed with what I've learned just since you and I've connected I mean I had a basic understanding of women for sobriety but really digging into the heart of what you're all about. I was blown away that you'd had this online recovery community for such a long time well before the sober curious movement or the trendy kind of sober online sobriety came out so I personally have pulled back. I had a membership program and some facebook groups and because of how I practice also because I have licensor still as opposed to Some people who including Veronica who are trained psychotherapist but no longer licensed. Now I really feel in my bones. what's right for me is more of the individual and group therapy kind of things online but I applaud. People like specially like yourself and women for sobriety as a whole because they are long standing institutions. That were originated. You Jeanne Kirkpatrick basically said there's really nothing out there for women specifically. She was unhappy like some of us are about how some elements of of these other programs are run from a male dominant point of view. And she built this. And so when I you about coming online I wanNA encourage you to let these people. These influencers. If you will on on social media know that you've existed this long because it's important it's important to have that kind of history and strength within an organization of your principles Free given freely to other women. I think that matters in our in. Hauer going to continue to approach addiction online because there are going to be problems whether we want to face them or not with the whole facebook interaction. An instagram interactions. When it comes to price we just haven't gotten there yet. I mean even Veronica has taken her membership program off of facebook for those same reasons so I love that. Your program is available and has been available for a long period of time. I want to help promote that great. Yeah it's yeah we like. I said Nancy really was just Swear ahead of her time with Taking the program online and was way ahead of her time. I saying we need women's programming. You're right there really was there. Women treatment wasn't even a thing. You know back then. Women got sense male programs and you know had worse results. Well made sense right because there weren't really being dressed. So yeah women I a brady has always kind of been on the forefront of like moving. Etsu what this is what needs to happen and thank you for recognising that and and I have a whole army of sober sister soldiers out there who helped promote the program on groups like sober full and yeah. I might see somebody has asked like. Oh what did you do to get sober? I see a bunch of my sisters on there and they've already promoted whether first Friday. I don't need to do it as much anymore. But I think that's great and I will encourage them say you know. Yeah we have been around. We were incorporated in Nineteen. Seventy five is. Oh we're going on our forty fifth year of my God addressing. Women's redeemed got. The program is older than I am. Just every time somebody I mean you can say nineteen seventy five and it has a certain resignation in my mind but when you say forty five years we've been around a while. I think that's import because I know just in how I have what I have learned in my own practice as a mental health professional it grows every year because I make mistakes right. We go down roads that work or don't work. We have to rely on our practices with the practices of the time. Like you're currently undertaking. I understand a hold Rewriting of certain things to make sure that your updated on your language like a lot of us are doing so I really applaud all those members out there who've been part of women for sobriety for so long hanging with it he. Yeah Yeah I mean I. We've got women on our board of DIRECTORS HAVE BEEN SOBER. One of them just celebrated twenty five years And other ones been sober over thirty years using women for sobriety as their primary recovery program. They're only recovery program. Yeah we need to let people know that this has existed and Women have had these programs were maybe just not a good at marketing them as other people have with programs that seemed to get more media attention. So that's what I want to help with. So let's talk a little bit about the conference coming up in June. Yeah Oh I love conference It's a bit more stressful. Now that I'm somewhat in charge of it. I don't know why that could be. I don't know but it is. It's such a great experience and you know it used to be really planned from within the office and and luckily I recognize my own limits. On this year we have a whole team of women with different sub groups. That are working on all the plan for this conference. It's her first. One outside of Pennsylvania. The first weekend conference was held in jeans. Farmhouse in quakertown Pennsylvania but it has been in Pennsylvania every year since so. This is our first year branching out like I said are twin cities gals in Minnesota are just phenomenal women with a great community so we thought that would be a great place to launch our first out of state conference really. You know kind of a Pajama Party. With what you sober women on because we we go. We stay in the arms on a college campus. And you know because we're a bunch of capable competent carrying comparison. Women there gust such a bond. And you just. I don't know everyone. I've talked to a conference that you feel like I've known them forever. You can't have this common common ground and We hang out Thursday ed. The dorms open on Thursday. Because it you always start Friday night. But women's started coming earlier earlier earlier. You know we you know have started off the back so fun. They're like I'm gonNA travel all day. I want to get there early. Oh we have ice breakers and influence as a on Thursday afternoon and evening this year we have expanded our Friday offering. There are some longer work up seeking got just a little bit deeper into the work. If you want to and then official conference but still start Friday evening. I think some day we might shift that but we still have our opening ceremony Friday evening in this year. Don Nicholl is from fewer. Covers is joining us for that when I did about And then atter day is really the the big meat gay or kicking off with a wonderful. He know by this Speaker Linda. Matty that I'm so excited Abou- excited to I'm so looking forward to that and yeah and then. We have workshops all day. We have three breakout periods throughout Saturday. And we've just had phenomenal. I keep using that word gray apprehensive coming in You can use from four for For different workshops unfortunately have to pick one which is the biggest complaint receiving about this year's program because it is very hard choice so there's three breakout periods on Saturday and then Saturday night. You know. Of course we are a nonprofit. We do a little bit of fundraising. But we're mixing in some fun stops entertainment We might have dancing. Still finalizing all those plans. Please have man's name please please please Sunday morning. We have another breakout periods. So you have to make one more heart show at ace and then we close out with a closing ceremony. Awesome really tightening program this year. I just I'm blown away by equality of the presentations that we have attracted this year and I think really the result of you know so many competent women working. You know to get the word out about our program and and to build a great experience. I mean I would. I would go to conference if I wasn't president. Eeo I would still go to conference. And even if they didn't have workshops I would go. Just because it's a wonderful bonding opportunity and it feels so good to be in the presence of so many loving and supportive a brave and amazingly accomplished women so I I can't either. I'm really excited Veronica was telling me about it when she was speaking as keynote last year I know she had a blast and I'm definitely in a. You're asking me like you're gonNA come in just on my day and I'm like Hell No. I'm coming to the hotel. I'm like no. I want to stay in the dorms on campus. I need a Pajama Party with dancing. So it's such a good time. Yes some women are like. Oh stayed in a dorm. You know what I mean. It's not. It's not glamorous combination. There's no babe service or because you know you're you're hanging out. I mean even Saturday night after you know after being a workshop all day you know although little lounge areas in the dorms are usually filled with demand kind of you know carrying about what a breakthroughs that they had or you know just sharing their stories or whatever I mean. I was not a heavy drinker that much. I should say I was probably binge drinking in college but I Kinda WanNa go relive some of my college days a little bit just saying like I'm GONNA play footloose. 'cause that's what we used to dance to in the hallways imprinted that you just don't you at midnight. Some people like to go to bed early. So you know no worries here. Yeah if you WANNA be a mania on the dance floor you go ahead now. I'll I'll have it all wrapped up by Lake. Ten as yes so again you can go to women for Dot. Org and backslash conference because I'm on that page right now and look at all the fabulous workshops love can change. The course of my world is one and exploring different types of meditation to enhance. Bridie all love given returns. I am learning how I'm learning to know that I am Blob. Is another one just fabulous one yoga for sobriety and I think that also includes your statements so yeah so much to choose from and you know the college that we're at we really got some great rates so if you're willing to share around and you're willing to three one a top bunk and and you register in the early bird period itching. That whole thing unites all your meals Everything for two hundred and forty five dollars. Wow yeah which is a really good deal. Include a hard to find a conference under a thousand these days. So they'll meals scholarships as well if someone really wants to come and you know airfare is is about all they can afford then we will. We will put you to work But not during any of the workshops. We don't expect anyone to miss any of the real meat of the activities they might help you know set up Arizona workshop or help with One of our fundraising activities. But I came. You know I was flying from Washington state you live. Pennsylvania every year or settled for my first few. I definitely came on work scholarships and I worked. I worked during the conference and it was still a fantastic experience. You'll do really try to make it accessible everyone you. That's a good gig. Yeah I'm really looking forward to it because I love. I'm going to be talking about my book and in Integrating with your statements and how you Women for Sobriety teaches Sobriety principles in recovery. But also just aligning it with you. Know what I know as a mental health provider and a woman. Recovery is really important to support yourself for your self esteem and techniques and how to to make that happen so I'm very excited. Wonder only looking for it or no. I'm planning some fun interactive stuff and might be a little crazy. But that's just me that's me too so I really enjoyed talking to you Adrian. I want to help as much as I can Especially around services for women. So thank you for coming on. I truly appreciate it. Yeah thank you for having me absolutely and come back again. I will okay time much. Thanks for listening to this sober soul recovery podcast with me. Linh matty if you like my show and want to learn checkout sober soul recovery dot net or please leave me a nicer review on itunes. Join me here. Each week were together. We Start and build and master sober life.