Recovered Life Contributor
Jennifer is a Certified Life Coach specializing in helping people find freedom from
alcohol. Member of NAADAC.
Jenifer, an Alcohol Freedom Life Coach, supports individuals with ADHD (formally or self-diagnosed) who have been using alcohol to manage their symptoms by sharing her own experience and the consequences of self-medicating. She realized that she had spent over 20 years using alcohol to cope with her ADHD symptoms and learned that individuals with ADHD are five to ten times more likely to develop alcohol use disorder. Through her 1-on-1 and group coaching programs, she works with individuals to change their beliefs around alcohol without labels or judgment, without willpower and without feeling deprived. Her mission is to pass on the tools she has learned to manage her ADHD without the use of substances or other unhealthy coping mechanisms.
For most of my life, I felt uniquely flawed. I struggled completing tasks in school and at work. I
experienced problems with relationships and social interactions, and suffered from low
self-esteem and self-image. However, when I drank alcohol, it seemed to magically give me a
sense of relief from my pain and frustration.
I considered myself a ‘normal’ drinker, not realizing that I was actually self-medicating my
undiagnosed ADHD. Things began to escalate after going through a divorce. Rather than
dealing with my grief in healthy ways I started drinking even more. When the marriage ended,
alcohol became my new partner, companion and best friend.
Initially, alcohol gave me the confidence to socialize with new people, go on dates and even
perform stand up comedy! I could go out to a restaurant or bar by myself without feeling
uncomfortable. Drinking ‘took the edge off’ and allowed me to numb the painful feelings of
betrayal, rejection and loss that I didn’t want to deal with. Alcohol was the magic elixir for
everything! Until it wasn’t.
My post-divorce party girl phase gradually turned into an unhealthy and destructive lifestyle
because I believed all the lies we are told about this toxic, addictive substance; that it is
harmless, relaxing and fun. That drinking is sophisticated, sexy and cool. I believed that alcohol
was only addictive and dangerous for “alcoholics”, and surely I wasn’t one of them!
I spent eight long years drinking so much more than I wanted to. I was terrified to lose my best
friend, alcohol, even though it was causing so many problems in my life. The cognitive
dissonance made me feel so ashamed.
I finally looked in the mirror and knew that I had to make a change. And what I learned, through
coaching, was that I wasn’t broken. I learned that I abused substances because I didn’t have the
proper tools to cope with uncomfortable feelings. Consequently, over the course of many years
of habitual use, I had become addicted.
I never believed that I could happily become a non-drinker. And I certainly never imagined how
much better life would be without alcohol until I understood the science behind the substance
and the power within myself to change my beliefs about it.