95: The Mother of all Guilt – Why Moms Struggle to Hit Meetings (Sort Of)

Being a mom in recovery seems like a topic we need to talk about more. How often do we see moms, especially new moms, not at the meetings we used to see them at all the time? How hard is it to adjust to the new pressures and stresses of being a mom when one of the most valuable resources you had for dealing with stress and pressure was seeing your support network at the meeting? What about the unspoken societal and internal pressure to always be with your child and not take time for your own health? We have Stephanie and Jenny on to talk about what it’s like for moms in recovery. How they found ways to adjust that helped them stay on the recovery path. What things might we be able to do to assist new moms in recovery when we encounter them. Listen in and then share your experience, thoughts and feelings about what might help mothers in recovery to keep recovering. Join the conversation by leaving a message, emailing us at RecoverySortOf@gmail.com,  or find us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, or find us on our website at www.recoverysortof.com.

Grief episode

Recommended by god:

17: Step Two – We Came To Believe That a Power Greater Than Ourselves Could Restore Us To Sanity (Sort Of)

FacebookTweetPin 2/9/20 We invite our first guest co host, Steve, on to talk about step…

120: Wise Speech (Sort Of)

FacebookTweetPin We have Jenny on to teach us about wise speech. Wise speech, or right…

188: The Phoenix App for Movement in Recovery (Sort Of)

FacebookTweetPin Ever heard of the Phoenix App? The one that lists local, free ways to…


recovery sort of is a podcast where we discuss recovery topics from the perspective of people living in long-term recovery this podcast does not intend to represent the views of any particular group organization or fellowship the attitudes expressed are solely the opinion of its contributors be advised there may be strong language or topics of an adult nature

welcome back it’s recovery sort of i’m jason i am have been called a mother a couple times i’m billy i’m a person in long-term recovery and today we have on jenny hi i’m jenny and we also have on stephanie hi i’m stephanie i’m also in recovery awesome uh so the topic of today and this episode has been a [ __ ] billion years in the making by the way um is motherhood in recovery or the unequal expectations on mothers and fathers in recovery or something like that i i don’t know exactly we’ll figure that out generally you know somebody brought up the idea that it is a little different for moms slash women in recovery and i got to thinking about that and you know we try to be a show and i think billy’s pretty open-minded and and my life experience has led me to be more open-minded than i ever was previously for sure um this idea that not everything is as equal as it sounds right and and maybe white males might have it a little easier than other people at times just from being the norm that things are made for right um so that being said i i thinking about my history with my wife and us having kids and and the differences and looking at that on a small scale like when i want to shower i go and take a shower right when i want to make something to eat i go and make something to eat if i want to make a plan to go eat lunch with billy we just make a plan and go eat lunch right and seeing my wife go through these things like it does not look like that it’s like having to advocate for yourself to have time for a shower or asking who can watch the baby while you go out and have this lunch is somebody available like and those are all considerations that i generally tend to not have to consider and that on itself and that level just seems so unfair right i can’t say that i am great at making a change in my own household unfortunately even seeing it because it benefits me right it benefits me i’m not going to sit here and lie um but i have tried through that awareness to be a little more empathetic compassionate helpful useful whatever you want to call it but in the eyes of recovery right i have seen this in action i’ve seen we come into recovery we’re ready to get our lives together maybe we get our kids back maybe it’s we’re having kids for the first time and that looks weird in

Couples in Recovery

couples in recovery because you’ll see a couple and they have a new baby and everybody’s excited and it’s beautiful and then three weeks later it’s like you still see the male half of the couple at every meet and they always hit you know the same three four or five meetings a week that they were always going to and then you’re like oh how how’s your wife oh she’s doing great

she’s great i’m taking care of kids she’s home taking care of the kids exactly right and so she almost i’ve seen at times has to advocate just to get to her home group right and and no even thought of i need to get back to these three or four meetings or five meetings i used to hit it’s just like god i got to do something for my recovery let me you know at least hit my home group somebody’s got to watch the baby while i hit my home group and even that sometimes can be a struggle to argue for that uh ability and you know i guess my original thought was oh well this is a societal construct this is how we do it it benefits men there’s a lot of this going on and and men just take advantage of this and it was kind of through the lens of like men or dicks right that’s how i was thinking and then in finding the the right person to come on here and talk about this um what i realized is this isn’t necessarily all the male half of the relationships fault like this is an internalized concept society has given women that they need to feel this motherly maternal guilt and they have to be around the baby all the time and and don’t take babies to meetings because they’re [ _ ] annoying and cry and interrupt and they might mess up somebody else’s recovery message they’re trying to hear and blah blah blah blah all this [ _ ] right so let me stop trying to mansplain and let the ladies uh take this over for a little while yeah i mean i i don’t i think maybe i don’t have anything left to say because you said most of it pretty efficiently for me um you know i so growing up i was always around other people’s


kids and best friends and kind of a part of raising these kids i’ve always been pretty maternal and i liked it you know so i thought when i got pregnant i was like okay i know how to keep children alive right it’s this is how it’s gonna work that is the goal yeah that’s and so far i’ve done a pretty good job but when i had my own kid i because i had no experience in having children of my own the amount of internalized pressure i guess you know of just doing it all myself you know and the struggle that goes with it and knew and when i had my kid um you know i was coming off i had i had like just like i got i got clean and i got pregnant you know what i mean like i had i had a one day relapse but it it was enough to set me back you know so i’ll say regardless of the relapse i had two years of recovery you know at that point but hadn’t done much work so like i’m still kind of crazy you know what i mean um and i was on uh mental health medication as well that i was not able to take while i was pregnant so i like went into the gauntlet of how do i take care of myself mentally and prepare myself for this child right and not cause harm to myself because not taking mental health meds i realize i do a lot of other self-heart so like there’s just all these things of you know i’m trying to learn and then like on top of it here’s a tiny human that’s very you know vulnerable um and it’s your job to take care of it while you’re while your husband goes to work uh which was not the case he came home he was very helpful and i was like no no i got it he’s like he has uh two older daughters so he’s been through this twice and he already knew like the kind of support i was gonna need i did not take advantage of that and i think six weeks in i threw a bowl of fruit at the wall and i like cussed at him in front of his visiting daughter uh which did not go over well and at that point i i was like all right this this is not working i have to you know accept some of the help that is freely being giving it’s a partnership and he has never made me feel like anything was solely my responsibility but i do see him go take a shower whenever he wants or you know because he i’m assuming i don’t want a lady spain right but you know that i’m gonna take care of the child and not let it die while he’s taking a shower he’s outside vaping you know which maybe it would be a relief to me if i just went and did those things instead of being like okay are you ready here’s the snacks here’s this food blah blah blah blah i’m gonna go take a six minute shower and try to wash everything you know what i mean uh i think a lot of it’s internalized and you know i probably don’t need to stress myself out that much but i do well there’s the internalized and then the i guess from just looking at my relationship there’s the reaction right so my wife says things like hey can you watch the baby while i go do this lunch with my girlfriends and i’m a guy who believes lunch with girlfriends is hugely important to your [ _ ] well-being but i don’t wanna i’m like so my reaction is probably like that doesn’t feel good when you’re asking to go through something good for yourself and so you start asking less right and those kind of ideas and i yeah like what the what the hell what do you got jenny so uh you know you’re that scenario you you played out your n a scenario so i don’t see that so much in aaa it’s like there’s no couples that come in together it’s like uh you know like the mom or the dad comes and what i’ve noticed in a a is that um dads will go to meetings like five six nights a week mom will get one night to go to a meeting and and there’s they’re supposed to you know take care of the recovery in just that one night and i so other all parents you know parents have to go to aaa but mom it’s like mom can only do one night because of that either internal dialogue says she has to be home or because of the societal pressure that says mom needs to be home but dad will go out every night of the week and any hour and i’ve known you know several men that um like the marriage or the family situation dissolved in recovery because he just kept going to do recovery stuff and uh we have a saying in a a um whatever you put before your


recovery is the first thing you will lose you guys say that yeah yeah yeah we say you’re gonna put it in the cooker okay oh yeah um and so there’s there’s that pressure too so like there’s that that mom guilt you know like if i put my kids before my recovery i’m gonna lose my kids but then there’s like this fine line bounce do i go be the mom and you know like go make dinner and tuck them into bed or do i give them some mac and cheese and hot dogs and run out to the meeting and leave them with my parents um so you know i was pretty lucky when i came in so uh you know i didn’t i didn’t lose my husband or my home or my job um i had one daughter when i started recovery and then i i got a rehab six months later outpatient and i got pregnant that week um so then i had my second daughter in recovery and then i did bring her to when she was an infant i brought her to meetings until she started getting a little more rambunctious so maybe like another six months after that and then i had to start making arrangements but i was going to much less meetings and then the insanity starts to kick in and i think at that stage like i guess while up until i had her i was doing like three meetings a week and then went down like one meeting and i was like that’s not enough because then yeah the pressure is on like that postpartum you know trying to figure out your new life and um so much i think a lot of recovery too is uh just figuring out who you are and dealing with how you were parented so that comes into play too so you know you’re dealing with mom guilt and then how you were mothered and then you’re trying to be a better mother and you it’s just there’s so many angles and like fronts to recovery like not just the physical substance addiction but you’re trying to resolve old trauma and be a mom and dealing with your own mom issues it’s just it’s it’s a lot to take in and so i totally support throwing bowls of fruit it happens like i’m picturing this scenario where this couple has a baby in recovery together and the woman can’t get to meetings right and the man is at meetings six and a half nights a week talking about how stressed he is about the baby yeah yeah he’s not even there right like it’s it’s interesting you said that in aaa there’s not all this coupling up and baby having i i guess na’s uh rampant yeah i i’m like maybe the reputation that that lewis presented to us in that a.a episode is is accurate like maybe they’re not just [ _ ] each other all over a a like they’re doing it yeah i feel like that is like the n a style you get clean you get a girl you get a baby like that’s that’s part of your first year right just around here i mean around here i think a a is like older too whereas n a is kind of like the 20 somethings just an observation not you know always but a lot more 20-somethings when i was in


rehab i was in a small group of 12 and it was 10 there were like 10 people who were like 20 22 years old and me and another like 40 something you know so and they all went to na i don’t have a ton of experience going to exclusively a meetings but i used to live in frederick maryland and um i noticed the majority of the people there was a pretty good diverse age like demographic but a lot of them were male 1 oh yeah so i have no idea if their wives were at home or if it was just they were the only ones coming and they were single i don’t know what they were doing in their beds like i don’t know who they were [ __ ] like i just it was a lot of guys and um i agree with that stat around here i would say like 70 30 80 20. yeah and it’s hard to find a women’s group so when i was in rehab they’re like you got to find a women’s group and there was like one in lower newcastle county and one in wilmington you know and and so i picked middletown so um and that one’s not even around anymore that’s and not even that was pre-coveted it already had dissolved it’s just there’s not a lot of women and then i wouldn’t even like where are they where are they they’re home taking care of their babies

just getting it done yeah probably so and it’s interesting that the big book does have a two wives chapter in it right why don’t we have a two moms chapter that’s i think the two wives chapter is really like old and archaic it’s like well if your husband’s an alcoholic uh you might want to attend to his needs or i don’t know i have never read it don’t let me lie um but if they we can have that why don’t we have a two moms chapter right that explains the difficulties of being a mom and thinking about that from the

Narcotics Anonymous

narcotics anonymous program like we have youth and recovery pamphlets [ _ ] we got a [ _ ] pamphlet for everything we don’t have a to new mother’s or to new father’s pamphlet and like i i’m thinking about when a sponsee in his first year says i’m gonna get into this new relationship and i love this girl right and i’m not like that’s a terrible idea i’m like dude hey that’s great just make sure you’re also still investing in your recovery and writing steps and doing these things that’ll set you up to be in a good situation because your your relationship is going to be this stressful event that is going to require these coping skills and a way to handle it right so it’s not like don’t do that it’s like hey make sure you’re including these positive things so that you have them when you need them and i’m wondering why we don’t have the same kind of idea around new moms right like hey you’re a new mom and that’s going to be extremely stressful situation kind of like you just described you got the old trauma the attachment styles all this [ _ ] going on underneath why don’t we also say hey you probably need to be in a meeting more than you were before not less you know it was suggested to me that like maybe you could start a small moms group i’m like yeah because i have like nothing else to do right now i’m going to start my own meeting yeah great idea i’ll cater it too yeah chopped vegetables right charcuterie you know like i understood like the sentiment but i’m like that’s not really like what i have time for right now why don’t you take your [ _ ] male privilege and start it for me luckily for me i have um a great sponsor who jason actually introduced me to just he thrust me on her years ago and i still have her and she’s wonderful and then a

Good Network

good network of women so my meeting attendance did go down especially in the first two months um you know i was really paranoid about bringing something home to the baby before he was vaccinated in our family we had uh infant death that it was years and years ago and it just made all of us kind of hyper aware and paranoid but i’ve really that’s not covet by the way no no no this was years vaccines that we do in the 80s yeah um so we i i relied heavily on my network of women which is it was a it’s a good network you know they it took me years and years to finally just pick and choose who i hang out with but i’ve got a good group now and that’s probably what saved me um mentally and the fruit in my house from you know just you know reaching out like i learned so that relapse i talked about that was just the one day what happened before that was um i was going through this mental health stuff and i was telling everyone like i’m supposed to and then one day i was like no one wants to hear about this [ _ ] anymore right and i didn’t talk about it for three days and then i relapsed it took three days of me not talking so now since then everybody hears all my [ _ ] i mean well you know my network and i don’t care if they’re [ _ ] tired of it because you know it’s what keeps me going it’s keep it’s good for my recovery and it has come excuse me mentally for the most part well you know so while i don’t get to as many meetings the meeting i do get to is my home group it’s a women’s group and i can go in there and say anything you know and they’re like yep we get it here’s a knife go murder your husband whatever you know don’t really do that but you know there’s a lot of understanding and compassion and i’m blessed to have a a good group of women that gives me their experience not their advice because i there’s nothing more i hate than someone who has no experience what the hell their advice they’re giving me and they’re like why don’t you and i’m like why don’t you go [ _ ] yourself okay so i make a baby and then you’ll understand right i usually i just say oh that’s nice and i just turn away and walk but so you you’re hitting your home group each week one meet yep how many meetings does your husband hit he usually hits his home group and yeah he’s the same way he works a lot but he also relies heavily on his network i’m assuming he’s on the phone with the sponsor all the time and he’s always telling me hey i talked to so-and-so which is a sponsey brother or whatever so um you know i don’t ask him details about his recovery but he seems to be doing okay and living okay and doing the same things i’m doing and i don’t think there’s a right or wrong way to recover right so knowing a lot of newcomers you know we suggest the 90 meetings in 90 days it’s to start a new behavior pattern like you use drugs every day let’s do this positive healthy thing every day in place like get in tune get connected i think a lot of that is a good suggestion and helps but i’ve had sponsors that came in did like the five and six meetings a week for a couple of weeks and then they already had kids at home and they’re like look dude i feel like something’s wrong with me but i gotta be home more like i can do like two meetings and i’m like i think that sounds like recovery to me like that doesn’t sound like something’s wrong with you that sounds like what you need to [ _ ] do that’s what your life calls for you’re not single and kidless and yeah so i i don’t think there’s a wrong way right and and i have actually even said the great debate of whether kids belong in meetings i’m like i think you kind of get more if you just stay home and call somebody than you do coming here and [ _ ] up somebody else’s meeting but whatever that’s my own opinion but i i in your mind ideally how many meetings would you truly like to hit a week that you think would keep you in a really healthy place and connected i think at least two or three and mainly to get some more fellowship and in person because i feel so when i do go to another meeting but outside of my home group that i’m usually because i’m invited to or asked to speak at it’s like recharge you know like i get to see new people and um or people i haven’t seen in a while hear different things you know get a new this sounds tragic say but appreciation from someone else’s suffering it’s not as bad or i understand and just um if i could more regularly go to more than one um it might you know it might help um but i think a lot of it has to do with just getting out of my house you know and seeing people and just human interaction and i think one of the things and this probably goes for both parties mom and dad that we miss when we have kids yes life is a lot of responsibility then it’s a lot about kids but if we don’t take time to have quote unquote adult time we lose our [ _ ] minds i can only talk about spongebob or or whatever the [ _ ] the cartoon we’re watching what what’s that god yes yeah and all that like i can only do so much masha and the [ _ ] bear right i need some our kids have the same taste all right i i need some please don’t talk to me about roblox if i see you at a meeting like i might strangle you right my six-year-old does enough of that like so i we do miss this idea that we need to be healthy first right it’s very much the the oxygen mask and the plain idea right if i don’t put on my [ _ ] oxygen mask i can’t help anybody else put on theirs and i think our society trends towards and this isn’t mother specific but this idea of personal sacrifice and pushing through and that’s where the reward and joy comes in and it’s the worst thing oh god it is um but it’s permeated right it’s permeated us and we think like we’re not supposed to be enjoying what we’re doing now and not supposed to be healthy to to i need breaks from kids and i think we all do and maybe this episode is about it’s harder for mom to get breaks from kids i think uh maybe that’s an internalized thing from the mom and herself maybe that’s from her partner maybe that’s from everybody but it’s harder for mom to get a [ _ ] break it’s harder for me to get a break my kid definitely i think feels safer around me um not discounting his dad by by any means so like when he wakes up he wants to see me right and when he goes to bed i you know but we were we were in wildwood new jersey recently and um we were at the beach and daddy was playing with him down by the waves and then he went out further and i stayed with him right and i’m holding his hand so he doesn’t die in the water right right and he’s having a great time and he’s kind of like whatever well when daddy comes back he drops my hand like it’s a bag of weed right and like goes running to dad because dad is more fun yeah you know what i mean so daddy is um he i fee uh sometimes i’m like you get all the cool stuff you know and i’m just it’s just my job to keep him alive but it’s also self-imposed like he’s you know it’s for me it’s a difficult balance because one he’s a he’s a child he’s a baby you know uh i feel like i should keep him i keep saying this keep him alive right uh but he’s also not gonna die if i you know don’t stare at him all day right right you know and my husband gets it so that concept it was actually on that show it was something the the chick elaine from seinfeld had her own show christine adventures of christine or something i don’t know but she had her kids full time and the dad had them every other weekend or whatever the typical old time setup that we used to have and she was jealous that he like did all these fun things with them and his expression was that’s because your place is home right and they always want to come back here so i gotta do whatever i can to grasp a piece of something which is fun and i think that does roll into everyday life even when you’re together like so mom gets up in the middle of the night generally right mom’s got the milk right that’s how it works mom’s there for comfort for feeding for all the daily tasks no matter how much an involved dad is mom still has more so baby tends to choose mom that’s just the way it is right but then dad needs a part so if mom’s always just choosing i mean if baby’s always just choosing mom that hurts well now i got to have a piece what’s my piece oh we’ll play right we’ll get some intense half hour of play and that’s exciting and tickling and throwing them around and [ _ ] right and and so that’s our piece that’s our only draw when mom has all the draw already so like my kids generally yeah it’s mom first right mom leaves oh yeah now daddy’s special i’ll sit on his lap right but right but when mom’s there the choice is clear um and so that i think plays into it too like how are you going to feel going to a meeting when baby’s crying that you’re leaving because you got to leave him with dad yeah but once i’m gone he doesn’t care right right it’s still that heartbreaking moment right so how could we better support moms that we don’t is this just an individual thing is this a a program thing is there some kind of like thing the 12-step program itself is there some like wisdom that we can start telling our sponsees when they have kids or telling anybody like is there some kind of setup do we need more meetings that have daycare like meetings with childcare that’s not often i’ve seen it here and there but like do we need more of that do we need paid child care meetings do we need women’s groups to to step up and be mother groups like what could really help this issue you know if when people you know in recovery want to help um instead of so somebody offered to watch my kids so somebody who would also have gone to that meeting was like hey do you want me to watch your daughter so you can go to the meeting and that i see that as service you know like and so they’re gonna miss the


meeting but they’re serving so somebody who doesn’t get to a meeting as much i never took them up on the offer but i thought it was kind you know so maybe like mother meeting shares where you trade nights right like hey tuesday i’ll stay home you bring your kid over and you can hit the meeting even though it’s still an added [ _ ] step that the guy doesn’t have to do i gotta drive over here to drop my kid off before i go to the meeting but but then thursday i’ll bring my kid to you and i’ll hit a meeting and you can watch it maybe even not just mom swap but like you know you guys could help oh [ _ ] now you wanna i mean this is ideal universe stuff but people like outs people outside of recovery your family like if if you want to support your loved one in recovery yeah offer to watch their child and don’t be uh you know be nice about it toad don’t be like you know don’t take all the credit be like hey i just want to do something nice for you i watch your kid and i’ll bring over some chick-fil-a you know um so don’t be like hey you need a [ _ ] meeting yeah yeah just yeah exactly don’t be a dick about it be like i saved you because i watched your kid just you know i posted it humbly real quick oh yeah yeah like watching my kids so that might you know watching her kids so she can go to a meeting you know be be kind about it because you know they already have enough shame having to to like who hurt you jenny that sounds really personal we could do a whole show on that but um um so yeah i mean if you watch the kid or help with uh food or you know just and just you know be be supportive that way without belittling the fact that they have to go take care of their recovery yeah and i always try to support people that bring kids to meetings um for a couple of the reasons we talked about one i mean and a lot of times you see people that bring kids it’s hard for them to even pay attention because the kids especially if they’re toddlers or that age they’re running around they need attention the whole time but that just getting out like i said around people because i was in the other situation you know where i would bring my kids to meetings you know when they were young and it’s it’s hard you know it’s difficult but just getting out of the house around other people around you know like oh my god adults you know that i can have a conversation with even if it’s after the meeting so now i try to recognize that when i see people bring kids you know at our home group we have a little area in the back it’s got some toys because it’s a church room and we don’t usually say like we have child care but for like some kids especially if they’re a little bit older six eight ten it’s like hey you can come back here we can close this door you can hang out back here and just try to give the parents just try to identify like yeah this is hard we’re glad you’re here you know what i mean your kid is fine like yeah they’re gonna make noise and it’s fine like i hate it it bugs me a lot i hate to say this but when i see people with your attitude that like you got to get your kids and make them shut the [ _ ] up like no they’re kids they’re not going to shut up they’re going to make noise they’re going to cry they’re probably going to want to talk you know they’re going to interact with people because they’re kids and it’s important for that adult to be able to come there and get that time like that’s that’s critical i guess my standpoint has always been like what’s good for the many and i’m like if you come looking at it from and this is a very selfish point of view right but if i bring a kid i’m going to get absolutely zero out of the [ _ ] meeting because my focus is going to be on is my kid behaving and not affecting anybody else’s ability to hear a message so i’ve already eliminated the fact that i’m not going to get anything and now i run the risk of possibly more people not getting anything if they are distracting right so in that standpoint i’m like i’m really doing more harm than good from the way i conceptualize it so i’d get more out of staying home and making a 20 minute phone call to my sponsor while my kid watches a [ _ ] cartoon because i’m going to get more adult interaction out of that than i am going to a meeting where i’m not going to focus on anybody else but i guess not everybody has that maybe some people don’t give a [ _ ] if their kid interrupts other people or they’re not so they’re not so worried about their self-worth being tied to that let me say that i wish we could create an atmosphere where it didn’t matter if a kid made a little bit of [ _ ] noise or not like who cares what you’re saying isn’t that [ _ ] self-important that everybody in the room needs to hear it well it’s it’s less about that and more about with whatever genetic makeup i have i’d get nothing when i’m distracted by shiny things thongs babies like anything that distracts me right like it quickly takes my attention to where i can’t like i my family will try to talk to me when the tv’s on in the room next to it and i can’t hear what the [ _ ] they’re saying because my brain can’t focus in right and so i don’t know if that’s a biological thing that a lot of people struggle with but i feel like that’s genetic and i have tried to get around it and i cannot so we got seven members in my family like five kids two adults when there’s more than one conversation happening at dinner i’m [ _ ] like i’m i cannot hear you i literally can’t i would love to and it’s it’s very frustrating for me because i want to be a part of it and so i it’s not from a standpoint of like what somebody’s saying is so important it’s more of like i literally can’t listen when i hear noise so i i don’t know if that helps you understand mine everybody’s different um in my experience you know i i when i see especially now that i have a kid uh when i see you know rugrats you know before that was probably annoying and over the years i’ve just been like sometimes it’d be like that you know like and i just see first off understanding the struggle it took to get that kid to the meeting like just let that person you know like kids come with [ _ ] [ _ ] and carriers and like you know like just it’s an hour put up with it for an hour you’ve been obnoxious to somebody for an hour before just deal with it just now like right now i’m being obnoxious yeah definitely pissing somebody off somewhere but you know and then now you know i keep going back to my home because it’s it’s the only one i really go to a lot but even in my network uh you know it’s like we actively say to people don’t worry about it don’t worry about it because people come in and their kids loud and whoever sitting around them they’re like it’s fine don’t worry about it just whatever you know and a lot of times like if the person’s comfortable with other people touching their kid the kid gets scooped up you know and there’s snacks and phones and just it’s like we want it to be a welcoming environment you know where people can come and bring their well-behaved child or their dennis the menace you know whatever it is and at one point we did have a meeting and i don’t know obviously with covet going on but we did have a women’s meeting in this area that actually had child care that was like a paid babysitter that sometimes was a member of the home group but sometimes it was my daughter you know and she would go and watch the kids and you know then the parents could come and bring the kids and have someone actually watch them you know so they could get out of the meeting space you know and maybe my view is the male privileged view of like not having to feel like i had to bring my kid to a meeting because there was a woman at home to watch him right maybe that is where i’m coming from i i guess my thought has never been like to be uninclusive in fact if somebody came to a meeting and said dude i really need this meeting can you watch my kid in the back and miss the meeting for me [ _ ] yeah i don’t really need this meeting right today like i’m down with that idea and i’m not gonna get anything if i’m sitting here with your kid yelling anyway so sure i will gladly sacrifice and take them in the back that’s not a problem for me it’s just i feel like in 2021 that’s kind of tough with okay so at a meeting up here with the six people i i’m close with in my home group that’s [ _ ] easy right they trust me with their kid but in the 55 member meeting at in dundalk i used to be a home group member at like where i didn’t even recognize the people they just moved into the recovery house across the street like last week and they don’t trust us yet like they’re not gonna want me to take their [ _ ] kid in the back right right back i don’t know i i just think that’s harder to do i guess yeah see if i love kids but given the choice if i had a meeting with with kids without kids i always pick without kids because i love kids and you know i’d be like drawn to them i’d kind of be like you i’d be like oh what are they doing you know like definitely a distraction yeah definitely and um like anyone else that would sit there and make a bunch of noise in the meeting you’d be like what the [ _ ] are you doing even older kids my concern is like we’re talking about adult topics and so if you get a kid who’s like six and up and it’s like you got language you know situations my daughter was 14 one time and i was going to my home group and i picked her up from something horseback riding or whatever and i said we’ll just go to the home group it’ll be fine you can just sit in the back and it’ll be fine and it was like i mean maybe 10 minutes into the meeting i’m like oh we gotta leave because the conversation like i said it just went to if i’m like this is totally not a place for my 14 year old daughter to be and it wasn’t over i can’t even remember being overly terrible it just got really uncomfortable and we left and i didn’t stay i’ve considered bringing my 10 year old and slapping headphones on her and she would just sit there and play ipad and you know i thought that could work but i’ve never so desperately needed a meeting you know at this time so i thought we got super lucky you know early in recovery and it was mostly because my daughter was like the kid from hell so our my first kid had like colic and cried like all the time we had a couple of babysitters actually quit and said we can’t watch your kid we’re like your kid’s too terrible so my mom actually came and moved in with us and watched our kid and so then we had like a live-in babysitter who was a grandmother who was great you know and that was a tremendous help but yeah that’s that’s the biggest reason i ended up taking my kid to more meetings and that time when she was about two or three my mom moved in so then it was like oh great and we had talked about that yesterday jason and i were having this conversation about it i think it’s easier for older parents to raise kids than younger parents they’re already beaten down they just give up all right like this is what’s happening patience i was super lucky that when i when i went to recovery um i was working but my mom and my husband both jumped in to watch my daughter and then so i could i was free to do what i needed so yeah in the beginning it was like five five meetings a week um and i and i worked too but then after after i had my second daughter i quit my job and then that’s an issue with moms too i think is like my being a mom is not just my role but it’s my job and so i don’t sometimes i don’t know when to stop you know like to to take a break to do the meeting or the social activity just you know freaking sit down you know like so you know that when being a mom is your job it’s just it’s hard to know when to turn off you know i’m always like cleaning making food cleaning up food checking on their emotions you know like and you forget to check on your own [ _ ] and our society is geared that way right men’s number one identifier for who they are as a person that they relate to is their profession and women’s is mom first then anything else is a distant you know fifth definitely one intellectually i know it’s wrong but i’m like i’m the provider and you know her mom’s role is the caregiver like that’s and i’m like i know that’s not really right but that’s just the way my head is geared so i i’m getting the feeling and i don’t know this but have virtual meetings really opened up a whole new world for this like does that give people well how young is your yeah it depends on how you know at any time i pop that laptop open here yeah that’s probably hard so i still need someone to uh sometimes i could like put on my phone and put in a wireless headphone and just listen and just listen but the phone would have to be like so like because he knows that’s right so and then it’s distracting because while i’m doing that like he wants my attention too and while i did them while they were almost the only option always um i was so grateful when in person meetings because they were just a little impersonal like i would talk to the people i knew i didn’t meet anybody new in the chat you know if there was someone new would i always message them but 999 times out of a thousand you don’t get calls for just like in a meeting when someone gives you a number right you know so it was uh i kind of it was like dragging the bottom you know it did what i don’t know that’s interesting i would have thought it would have opened up a new channel i get there’s still some distractions but maybe less pressure because it’s not distracting the meeting i would think but i’m also wondering like there has very much been this you’re either into virtual meetings or you’re really not right and so i’m wondering like for people who came in during the time of virtual meetings if they have a kid if they feel like it’s an easier thing to navigate because that’s all they’ve known anyway is virtual meetings it’s a helpful tool it was helpful to still have access to it but there was less accountability like if i’m talking to you here we are in person i can read your body language i can look at your eyes i can hear the way you breathe when you say something right and you know i can get a better read off of you and maybe hold you accountable and you could do the same but in a meeting i just got to turn my camera like on zoom just turn my camera off or just sit a little back or put you know something right and it’s just like i showed up i sat in the back of the class for me you know and i signed my name and i attended has anybody heard any rules about that like i i’ve gone to a couple of virtual meetings where they’re like we ask that you not vape or smoke what because apparently it might be triggering for people or something yeah pajamas right that’s [ _ ] crazy right but i’m like i’m wondering if a meeting would have the rule like you can’t have kids on screen or something like that i have not experienced that i could see somewhere some meetings got that [ _ ] so what about i’m curious of this and i don’t know that it makes any difference what about the time of normal 12-step meetings right like we have them generally seven seven thirty eight it’s a time right right like is there a way that maybe thinking more about this motherhood topic like is there a better time we could have meetings at that might more accommodate people or make it easier i went to when when my kids were in school i went to a noon meeting from time to time so maybe daytime meetings do yeah provide something but if i was a working mom that wouldn’t work right yeah you know i used to go to when i worked and i i just had the one uh went to a 7 a.m meeting some people think it’s crazy but it totally worked for me right before work yeah i wonder yeah so like if if a mom has access to daycare maybe the noon meeting it’s funny i’ve always thought of noon meetings as people who are still using that’s just what i assume i’m like oh you don’t have a job whatever your your schedule is for whatever reason you know uh the same reasons different times work now for people you’re seven a.m your noon meeting you can go on your lunch break or you know for me a meeting at six would be better for bedtime but it’ll also be impossible because then i have you know my my husband gets home and i have to feed everybody and make sure you know my job uh is to cook you know there’s a in the house there’s a list of things to be done he does half i do have so but sometimes there’s times constraints on what i do so six o’clock meeting would almost never work right for me uh you know the seven o’clock works better for my my child’s needs you know i mean so i don’t know if it’s geared towards because you have moms at work and mom’s adult i have a best friend who brings her kid to work she works she custom designs cookies and like there is so much stuff to grab for a kid she’s got a natural taste tester so she yeah yeah but like she i say she slays because she like makes she she makes it work her kid is almost two and she does it and she would take her kid to meetings like she just she’s an animal man i don’t know how she does it like she works and she takes care of her house and here i was thinking i was mom of the year and she like does everything you know what i mean and she has a supportive spouse but what about what about a later meeting like would that have felt more accessible like hey the kids in bed i don’t feel guilty asking my partner to watch them because they’re tired yeah i get that i just didn’t know i was like well maybe a nine o’clock would be well and did you do that yeah that would work for fathers i think well yeah i’d mention you have another kid on the way sure uh you said due in sept december right yeah i guess we’re not supposed to say congratulations maybe congratulations i already did congratulations i’ll accept it yeah i’m not offended so are there things you’re gonna try to do different this time or things that would make this kid easier i mean it’s gonna actually probably be harder if i had that information i’d be rich i’d write a book about it uh i mean so i will probably put less pressure on myself and uh definitely lean on my husband more there are some things that are difficult right because he has a very labor-intensive job so i try to take the burden on at night of the kids you know what i mean because uh you know for who wants to get up and be pre how hard is it to be productive when you’ve been up half the night and you’re i mean he swings he’s an auto body tech so you know he just bends metal all day with his hands it’s hard to do when you’ve had an hour of sleep consistently you know so these are burns i’ll take on but i remember with the first one like as soon as the kid would cry i’d be right there you know what i mean and he’d just be sitting back on his phone i’m like aren’t you gonna do anything he’s like the kid’s fine just give it a minute and me thinking it’s the end of the world so there’s probably the only thing i would do different is ask for help more he can’t read my mind he doesn’t know when up here i’m about to have a mental breakdown you know because i’m not saying anything if i say you know can you i need to go sit in the bathtub for an hour you know what i mean he’ll be like you know i mean just asking for help um and i think that has made our relationship better since we’ve had a kid and um just being a mom being a parent easier is verbal that’s the way i’m looking for verbalizing because people can’t read our minds and they don’t know what our expectations are and it’s not fair to them so i think asking for help put unfair expectations on themselves you know like it’s okay not to be able to do i can do that to myself it’s not fair to do it to you yeah right they didn’t come from nowhere though like those unfair expectations they moms didn’t just make them up right like this was somewhere along the way this is what our society kind of indoctrinated us with was the idea that this is what moms need to be capable of and handle and take on i mean and i don’t know how much of that’s nature though too like i thought okay so like with our kids like here’s the difference with me and mom like mom’s the one that when they come in like she’s gonna start like trying to fix his hair and oh you got [ _ ] on your face and wiping his face and all that stuff and i’m gonna be like let’s go hit baseballs like i don’t care what you got on your face or what your hair looks like let’s go you know and that’s just a difference of personality or difference you know like i’m not as worried about those things whereas it depends on the time of day for me how how much i care what my kid looks like yeah well and there’s an appreciation for what you just said but we did a grief episode with caroline and understanding the mental health aspect behind that that like some of us are not ready or capable of guilt freely asking for help right like it’s hard when somebody has passed on to to muster up what you need to muster up to say hey i really need you guys to come do this for me or i need your help with this or i need company right and so i i don’t want to put the burden just on mom’s like oh suck it up and [ _ ] ask you right ladies like what can these people around us do what can we understand better and think more of right like and so for the grief episode it was like hey don’t give people the option of if they need help it’s like hey i’m going to bring you dinner what do you want to eat yeah right hey i’m going to come watch this baby like it’s not given that option of denying it and soldiering on right it’s like no i’m going to [ _ ] do this how do you want it to look right right maybe not even give them that option just that’s why i got my fridge just put in my stove i hope you like it right and that’s fine too um so i wonder like is there workarounds for not being able to hit meetings and i feel like this could be tricky but but it’s okay you become a new mom i can’t get to meetings but maybe like when i got clean they had step study groups and [ _ ] like that right like and maybe it doesn’t have to be a step study group but maybe it’s like hey let’s have a mom’s group we’ll pick a house or we’ll rotate houses and once a week we’re gonna set up a [ _ ] time and we’re all gonna get together and talk and our kids can play and we can help mother each other’s kids and learn from each other mothering you know the kids but like what can we do and and again i’m putting the emphasis on women maybe men need to do this too to give their wives a break right come up with parenting father recovery groups where we meet once a week and bring the kids to give mom a goddamn break but like i don’t ever hear about these suggestions being brought up for new mothers and fathers it’s just like hey congratulations move on with your life and do what you got to do right right right so like why not have these ideas of like hey let’s start up a [ _ ] father’s group in our area where maybe it’s not so structured as a meeting and we don’t have to worry about who’s child caring the kids you know so that we can pay attention but we just meet up at a house and [ _ ] kids go wild and and we talk and and life goes on and it gets good fellowship huh sounds like good fellowship you know right right but i feel like i’ve never heard of that happening somebody who’s passed the infant stage has to organize that the people with the newborns can’t be the ones to organize unknown there it is it’s hard just to round up two or three kids and get all their [ _ ] it’s not even worth it you’re like ah that’s too much yeah i mean calling uh uh so my sponsor her children are grown i would almost call her like the equivalent of a predecessor like she’s just she just knows and she’s like well this is you know this is my experience with my kids i just i just took them and here was my experience with it and sometimes it’s inspiring and sometimes i’m like you were crazy you know but having other people who that have been through it just like in recovery people that have been through parenting um i don’t want to say the responsibility should fall on them but i’ve certainly got the most help from people that have survived it you know what i mean um you if you told me when i first brought my kid out that like hey there’s a bunch of moms gonna get together i’m like you’re gonna bring more people with more of these things and we’re all supposed to like talk to each other i’m not real interested but um you know my sponsor would have groups and she would always invite the

New Moms

new moms and say bring your kids you know what i mean so like including you in a thing that’s not for me not just geared towards moms with kids but other adults without it was a little more welcoming i don’t know if that applies to anybody else or anything like that but not being singled out like hey here’s your special need we’re going to cater to it hey you’re just part of everyone else just come we whatever we everyone’s had kids or we know about it just it’s not a big deal when for me it’s always been like i was incredibly lucky i had my kids in recovery they didn’t see me using or anything but our addiction like i think kids are like the innocent victims in all that i mean they’re it’s bad enough they had to deal with me just because i’m sick and [ __ ] crazy but let alone if i was using or kids that have come out of that kind of trauma and they’re like these innocent victims that i like to hope we can be more welcoming and accepting of as part of recovery you know what i mean and then we all know or at least i know families i’ve watched their kids grow up they’ve seen my kids grow up we’ve all kind of been around recovery together and you know you watch they become part of your family you know yeah

this episode has been brought to you in part by voices of hope inc a non-profit recovery organization made up of people in recovery family members and allies together members strive to protect the dignity of those that use drugs and those in recovery by advocating for treatment harm reduction and support resources and mentoring please visit us at

www.voicesofhopemaryland.org and consider donating to our calls

so that and it’s interesting you say that that you felt more welcome at just a friendly outside of the structured n a setting welcome environment right where it wasn’t really oh hey you a horrific new mom right you you’re infected with the new mom disease you belong in this group uh one of the things i’ve failed at for a lot of my recovery is including my family in my fellow shipping like i don’t want to say i haven’t included them in my recovery because i definitely try to take the principles home to them but it’s always been very separated right like i’m not bringing my [ _ ] kids around these [ _ ] up people right honestly like that’s been my thinking they’re not going to do special events no way and i have taken a new relationship with that in my life like i do take my kids to events if it’s something i think that’s useful for them like we’ve been playing softball and all with with some of the narcotics anonymous people in the area but i i think maybe just what you’re getting at is maybe we need more i’m not trying to say outside the fellowship as in like away from n a but with the recovery people and outside of like this is an n a sanctioned event right maybe we need more of this close fellowshipping connection things whether that’s we call it a step study whether we call it a hey we [ _ ] get together once a month because we like each other like whatever we call it maybe we just need more of this to be more inclusive to people who have kids and maybe that does fill the gaps in not being able to hit so many meetings well i mean i i’m not i cuss at home and it’s probably not great my kids are already starting to i cuss in greek a lot which i think maybe he’ll get away with a little bit more but maybe not um because he picks up on my english anyway what i’m trying to get at is for the people that aren’t comfortable bringing their kids for whatever reason to a meeting that everyone’s cussing and be you know showing their crit past criminal element or current whatever you know what i mean um it might be a little more inviting to say hey all these you know pirate mouth criminals are going to go play softball and you know maybe the kid can focus on that instead of what’s coming out of their mouth right you know what i mean and it’s because the intent of the meeting is just to share and you know what we do at meetings um and maybe the focus shouldn’t be on that for the kid maybe they should just see these people living their lives successfully and contributing to society and being good people man we’ve always taken our kids to like the cookouts yeah events i mean they’ve just grown up around n a stuff we’ve had things at our house that aren’t specifically in a sanction but with other people in recovery are our kids have just always been around for a while we had to kind of we had to explain to them like no you can’t just tell people like they would just tell people oh yeah my dad goes to these n a meetings and you know yeah at the most inappropriate times and you know i heard about some guy slamming dope in his neck my dad was in jail okay let’s leave that for another time i wonder if that gets complicated like my situation of marrying an outsider right an earthling or whatever we want to call people that aren’t na people right right right so with her so it felt weird like most of the people i interact with in na are are guys in that network type level right and it’s kind of weird to i guess not a lot of them had kids like most of the guys i was sponsoring didn’t have kids and so i’m just trying to picture like a guy and hey you want to come over and play with my kid it seems a little awkward and it shouldn’t but it does right there’s this connotation to it and i’m wondering like with billy’s situation him and his wife were both in the program right so they all the people that were going to come over might have been couples they might have been friends like the people in my n.a world were not my wife’s friends they did not know her and so it was just like not that i haven’t had some people over my house but i feel like that did make it a little trickier with including the life of 12-step fellowship on your end or in mine probably yeah has she ever oh no been like uh this is weird i don’t like it no she’s the person who from day one is nice and easy to get along yeah she’s like no i’ll go to a meeting with you if you want and i’m like you’re going to be [ _ ] bored at that meeting you don’t need to go she might be but she’s there for you i i know but i’m i’ve always i don’t need anybody here for me this is my like it’s one of the it’s always me we’re going to crack open a psycho jason right now like how do you feel my earthly husband is no interest in checking out checking out my term yeah like my recovery life he came to my one year anniversary you know just because they were like oh is your spouse gonna come but he’s had no interest in doing anything social with anybody i’ve had a few friends come by the house you know and you know he’s not like he doesn’t shun them he talks to them like any of my other friends but you know like when they had their stock up you know like i asked him if they wanted he wanted to do that he’s like no it wasn’t really a soccer but but i was like hey there’s a like it was a new year’s dance i’m like maybe we’ll get my parents to watch the kids we can go on a date imagine that a date and he had no interest in like don’t ask because it was recovery centered or if it was any other dance he probably wouldn’t have went um good point he probably wouldn’t have gone to any like dance right you know maybe something else but like i’ve invited him to other anniversaries or um well wouldn’t it’s so funny like i guess like two three years in we did have a date night i was like yo do you want to hit my meeting and then we’ll go to the movie he’s like what i was like i was like oh it’s cool i’m introducing you to my friends he’s like nah so what would he do like a recovery like i don’t know canoeing trip or something like that

he doesn’t mind me going out and having friends recovery but he doesn’t interesting he doesn’t need any friends my recovery friends i’m pretty sure you’re bringing aaa friends home and he’s like you want a beer my sponsor you’re going to drink those my sponsor’s boyfriend whatever is a uh an earthling i guess we’re calling him now and um you know he’s also a very quiet person you know he’s a man of few words but from what i’ve gathered from what she has said um because i don’t have experience with someone who’s dating a non-addict um you know she was open with him in the beginning and he has been very supportive of you know her meetings and her recovery and she’s a person in long-term recovery you know because he has this attitude and he loves her very much he shows up sometimes they they ride motorcycles he’ll ride to the it’s a women’s meeting he’ll just sit outside just to ride with her there and back you know what i mean but i do go over there and go over step work and sometimes i’m like i don’t have a problem sharing my story which is is graphic but sometimes he’s in the living room i’m like am i like is he not gonna want me in the house now you know because i’m telling he’s hearing my step work uh and he’s just watching he doesn’t care you know what i mean but like that’s a little hard from my perspective well i i mean for people that don’t know my sponsor she she just says anything she wants ever so he’s probably used to hearing crazy [ _ ] but um you know i i people’s opinions used to be a big part of my life and um until i broke free of that i couldn’t start recovery and um so in the past it’s probably something that kept me using for a long time uh and now it’s i don’t want to say it’s a non-issue certain people’s opinions bother me but um being around someone who’s not i try to be respectful i guess for around an earthling but then again you know you don’t have to see me anymore it’s okay i’ve just always been super protective of anything that people want to talk about not so much because of my embarrassment or even theirs right it’s just it’s almost like that therapy idea of like what more would you be willing to share if nobody was listening than you are if we’re at starbucks or if my wife’s in the other room so i’ve always been like super cautious about that she gives me the option of him she’s like are you okay with oh my god i don’t care if if i wasn’t he would [ _ ] off somewhere yeah go [ _ ] off somewhere right yeah but i don’t care so what else can we do to to support moms to change the the stigma around you know what they can do or can’t do or what they’re able to do to change the supports in place that are available like what more could be done in this situation i get it a lot of it feels internalized from what our society has put on people but like what is it going to take to change this is it just hey we keep waiting and slowly over time we get better understandings that women have different needs than men and we need to address them or is there literally some things we can start advocating for like is there things i can leave today and say you know what besides on a personal level i need to be more aware of my wife’s needs and and what she needs to be healthy what can i do when i go to a meeting and i encounter anything can i give helpful suggestions of like oh hey i heard that doing this might help you because i know you can’t get to as many meetings or is there anything like that is there any good plausible solutions yeah patience and tolerance you know if they have to bring their kid you know that’ll you know just be patient and um and offer them help when you can i have to get even on a broader scale i think we need more attention on how much moms drink you know they don’t ask for help i think there’s like that whole uh mommy wine culture and it’s acceptable and it’s so much easier for moms just to stay home and drink and just to keep mom home because she keeps the home running and just let her drink as much as she wants you know as long as the household keeps running because if mom goes away you know sometimes she’s like the the linchpin to the home operation and i think it keeps women drunk until it’s too late you know that is a very a.a view we definitely do not have uh i had no sp like reference to that it’s not like hey let’s get let mom stay home and do heroin yeah stay home and bang the dope in your neck take care of that house good idea to keep in the house mommy fentanyl culture right so when the pandemic happened there wasn’t the um the heroin fairy going around door-to-door the wine fairy did you guys see that at all i did yeah all right so yeah when the pandemic happened we were all like locked away that people were like secretly dropping bags of wine off at their girlfriend’s bags and i was like no don’t do that like no not me like and i wasn’t i wasn’t really out about my recovery yet and i was so afraid somebody’s gonna drop a bag of wine at my house it would be like a gift bag you know with wine and the glasses and the whole like i know they said alcohol consumption was like way up everything everything yeah if we can put wine in bags we should be able to put heroin in bottles that’s all i’m saying equality if somebody comes to a recovery dharma meeting with a kid right we’re talking a a-a-n-a right yeah you’re trying to meditate yeah it’s just that’s hard it would be it would be hard somebody brought a dog once i thought that was kind of like you know because we’re all sitting around meditating here like quiet down fifi yeah like the heavy breathing and i was like i don’t think that’s really appropriate but if some we i would probably make accommodations if we were meditating outside there’s that kitty section in fact this is funny there was an n a meeting in the house and we had our recovery dharma around the fire pit and the kids from the n a meeting came down to party at the play stuff right next to our meditation i was like come on man like it was a little inconsiderate it’s like i can’t leave my dog with


my husband anyway i think he was traveling like from here today i understand you can just leave them and they will be fine i couldn’t leave my kid in a crate it probably it’s frowned upon but we were talking about doing a meditation retreat like a recovery meditation retreat and you know i was seeing who might be interested in somebody’s like oh cool i’ll bring my dog i’m like well uh it’s a silent retreat i don’t know how you could have a dog and be silent it’s interesting the different views on dogs so like two weeks ago there was a dog in my home group and i i was virtual that night for whatever reason but i was like that’s weird to me right but then the next week another home group member messaged me was like hey do you think anybody mind if i brought my dog and i was like well there was a dog there last week but i don’t know how that works if you bring two dogs and they don’t get along like i have no clue like to me if you ask me i no don’t ever bring a dog to a meeting but to her it was like i worked a long day i wanted a dog i don’t know but she wanted to take it for a walk and then she had time to do that but only time to do that and go straight to the meeting and i was like 10 minutes late for the meeting i don’t [ _ ] know don’t don’t ask me i don’t i don’t mind them i don’t think i’d want one at a meditation meeting yeah you know if you just say babies like i’m just going to stare at the dog and the baby the whole time you know like my girlfriend just had a kid and sits next to me all the time and i’m just like and just staring at it the whole time everything he does is fascinating and i i don’t know what’s going on up front so but if they want to you know if it’s not disturbing there’s a lot of things i don’t care about if it doesn’t affect me people start bringing dogs i’m bringing a [ _ ] cat don’t think it’s not going to make it weird just to make it [ _ ] i’m bringing my cat oh you can bring your dog i’m going to bring a cat so maybe maybe this is a practice of our principles right we talk about uh open-mindedness honesty uh self-reflection introspection selflessness maybe this entire practice of like being more aware of mom’s and mom’s struggles in recovery is is the ability for people who maybe are fathers maybe are not fathers and just men maybe or just women who have never had the mothering experience but just us trying to be more aware of like what’s going on what does this person’s special circumstances require and how can i help with that right maybe it’s just that it’s impressive easy yeah looking out for your fellows my biggest thing is um


you know a mom or a couple with a baby and just like in my experience this is what they do and it’s probably not great and they’re probably terrible it’s not really any my goddamn business what’s your problem what can i do to help you know what i mean and instead of occupying my mind with judging them you know just like recognize be vulnerable recognize their vulnerability even if they’re guarding it you know what i mean just be welcoming and it’s like as simple as that just as every other philosopher gandhi whoever you know is just be kind to each other that’s it if you want to judge in your head that’s your problem but don’t pass it on you know what i mean because uh for me i’ve heard horror stories about people walking back into 12 step fellowships naa whatever with their tail between their legs you know what i mean and some of it is because they’ve gotten that experience like people have shamed them or it’s their own [ __ ] i’ve never had that experience ever and it’s um it’s wonderful so if someone you know can go into somewhere and not have to worry about feeling shame uh they’re probably gonna feel more welcomed and to keep coming back and whatever i can do to make that better you know i’ve made strangers food and just hey i i don’t know you but what’s your address here you know sometimes it’s helpful sometimes it’s not but i did my part you know what i mean and i i tried to make them feel loved it’s what was done for me growing up and in the rooms and i just try to pass it on so there you go don’t be that person that someone says that mother right support a mom instead and a dad you know i’m not trying to exclude dads in this conversation i just think it’s very relevant to realize the opposite and opposing and different standards that are set for us and maybe really start thinking it’s one thing for me to be aware that this problem exists but for me this is definitely like what am i going to do to step up to try to make it not exist in my world right because it’s not fair and it’s not right and i wonder how many stressed out new moms don’t have the ability to access the resources they need to stay here and to stay clean so i want to be helpful to that all right have a good week did you like this episode share it with people you think might get something out of it check out the rest of our episodes at recoveryswordup.com also while you’re there you can find ways to link up with us on facebook twitter instagram reddit youtube anything we’re always looking for new ideas got an idea you want us to look into reach out to us


One response to “95: The Mother of all Guilt – Why Moms Struggle to Hit Meetings (Sort Of)”

  1. when my mother got old I brought her to live with me. She used to be a quiet meek religious woman. But when she got alzhiemers she became violent, started cursing she was a different person. She kept running away and the police had to keep bringing her home. The doctor didn t want her eating in mcdonalds because of her pressure. One morning she wanted to go there and when I told her the doctor didn t want her eating there she turned on all my gas jets and rolled up a long piece of paper and told me she was going to burn my d___ house down if I didn t let her out. I was scared. She was bigger than me and her eyes were looking wild. I had to find somewhere to take her. If I fixed her food she would throw it on the floor. It hurt me when I had to find a place for her. She s been dead almost 20 years and I still cry when I think of her I have a 94 year old father who I had to place in memory care last year. Sometimes he’s very with it and other days is the total opposite. I couldn’t physically care for him any longer in my home I feel very guilty about making this decision. He always has gotten his own way and now is bucking me for where he lives. He’s very surly and angry about his life. It’s taking a toll on me because I try to visit every day or my husband goes for me. My diabetes has gotten worse since he got ill last year and I placed him in memory care. I can’t get rid of the guilt.