I’m Claire, The Soberholic. Originally from Newcastle, I now live in North Wales, with my husband and our 2 young sons and my cocker spaniel, Woody.
I created The Secret Guide to Sober Success, as a result of my own personal struggle with alcohol and the subsequent discovery that a sober life has so much more to offer.
Being sober is energising and revitalising and I’m definitely having more fun.
I worked hard and for years, I thought of alcohol as a release, drinking 100 units (10 bottles of wine) a week. I enjoyed a party lifestyle, in which alcohol played a big part, but I was trapped in a vicious cycle of drink, regret, repeat.
I did ask myself at times, “am I an alcoholic?” but as a successful businesswoman, with 12 properties and a young family, I dismissed the idea. To me, I didn’t fit the profile, so the label of ‘alcoholic’ kept me in denial. I was miserable. I was turning to alcohol to try and keep it together, but while it was masking some of my problems, it was creating even more. It was robbing me of my sleep, my energy and my mental capability. I wasn’t functioning effectively in my business, or as a parent; I was anxious, guilt-ridden and unhappy.
Watching my friends health decline, aged just 52, was my wake-up call to re-evaluate my own situation and give up drinking for a while. I was shocked though, at how hard I found it to give up. In the media, alcohol is portrayed as synonymous with having fun. It’s joked about in a way that other drugs are not; for example, on birthday cards, posters, mugs, coasters and now even on the covers of popular parenting books!
With even more references in social media to ‘wine o’clock’ and ‘prosecco girly fun,’ the alcohol intake of women is increasing.
Having experienced for myself the benefits of being sober, I am now over 4 years alcohol-free, the best news is my husband has also joined me and he has just celebrated being sober for one year. I was keen to turn the tide of popular opinion and ‘rebrand’ sober life.
I’m happier than I’ve been in years and I want to help other women to achieve that feeling too.