What’s it like to be a therapist who drinks?

Yesterday I recorded episode #42 for my audio podcast subscription thingy.

I’m starting a new series of audios, where I read letters I’ve received from professionals about what it’s like to drink and do their job.  Doctors, lawyers, musicians, ministers.  This first audio is “What’s it like to be a therapist who drinks?”

Janett (the now sober therapist) outlines what she sees as the challenges of being a drinker in her profession.

It won’t be long before you see a pattern …

I’m posting the entire audio here, because it’s short. This audio will be available for 48 hrs. Click below to listen:

[this audio link has been removed]

click here to try a podcast subscription (1 month trial) – and of course, when you get bored of me, you can cancel whenever you want


Happy Day 50 to Mia

Happy Day 50 to Abrown

Happy Day 50 to IrishGirl

Happy Day 50 to Nontu

Happy Day 50 to Scheherazade

Happy Day 57 to Amelia

Happy Day 100 to MoreToMeThanThis

Happy Day 100 to Katie

Happy Day 100 to Howard

Happy Day 128 to EllieR

Happy Day 300 to LD



I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • From AM: “I listened to this podcast a few mornings ago on my way to see my psychologist funnily enough. It is very interesting because whilst you don’t have to experience addiction personally to be able to productively help someone in need, I believe it would add a new dimension to the therapy. I wonder if it makes it easier to pick up the signals from the patient, more intuitive to some of the underlying issues that might not be verbalised.
    I have had experiences where I have waited for the question about the role of alcohol in my life, given what I have described re anxiety, sleep issues etc but it hasn’t come. I know, I know that for therapy to be successful honesty is pretty key, but where I haven’t felt entirely comfortable with someone and holding back somewhat, I guess I have felt that I’ve offered the clues but the issue of addiction hasn’t arisen.
    Needless to say, sessions with these psychologists (there have been 3 in this category) haven’t progressed and it’s not their fault at all, but as someone who has been exceedingly private sometimes you do need perception from the therapist to join the dots and I sense that someone who has experienced addiction in some form may be more open to this.”

    • @ AM~ i feel you on that thought that if the therapist/coach/nurse had experienced your addiction or “downfall” they will be able to better relate and call it like It is… reminds me of clergymen/women that have been down n out n discouraged or had a drinking problem or whatever pricipalities they had let tear them down ( prior to coming into their calling)…they r not ( or shud not) be ashamed to tell it because It will speak volumes to those in need of ecouragement and Living testament that We 2 can be Victorious over our addictions 😉 INNEEDOFGRACE

  • From Soberp82: “I listened with interest to this podcast about the therapist’s view of drinking alcohol. I can imagine it must be so conflicting for people who work in a professional capacity to distinguish between what they ought to say that is in the best interest of the client, and contend with their own practice outside of work.”

  • I was struck by her comment about changing “the rules” to accommodate her drinking. I think I was playing that game with myself. I think it takes a certain amount of courage to “practice what you preach.” Good on you, Janett.

  • Hey Belle, loved the audio, good to hear your voice 🙂 Interesting to hear the perspective of the therapist (reminds me slightly of a column in a british newspaper that I like called What I’m Really Thinking (http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/series/what-im-really-thinking). I think there must be a problem with a lot of these professions, such as doctors, nurses, counsellors and therapists, where their advice on drinking will be affected by their own drinking habits. How can this patient / client really have a problem if they drink like I do? ( And I’ve always had the impression that doctors drink more than the general population – maybe I am completely wrong about that though!) What a brave woman for talking so honestly and openly about it.
    And thank you for my 100 day shout out! Yay! And hello and congratulations to Katie and Howard, too. Happy to share a sobriety date with you both 🙂 xxx