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Embracing Sobriety: A New Chapter in Motherhood with Victoria Emes

“I don’t know how we survive without laughing at the absolute carnage that having children is” shares Victoria Emes, this week’s guest on Happy Mum Happy Baby: The Podcast. As a comedian and content creator, Victoria’s Instagram offers a glimpse into the trenches of parenthood, delivering much-needed parenting LOLs and relatable content to her followers.

For Victoria, a large part of her online narrative has been intertwined with alcohol, and the comfort of a much needed ‘glass of vino’ after a difficult day of parenting. It’s a conversation so common in motherhood, using alcohol as a coping mechanism for parenting, and Victoria attributes this narrative as part of the reason why her audience really connected with her content.  After nearly a year of sobriety, Victoria reflects on the journey that led to stopping drinking, considering it as one of the best decisions she’s ever made. 


Navigating the decision to become sober wasn’t straightforward for Victoria. She had gone back-and-fourth with sober stints for short periods, and identities as a ‘grey-area’ drinker, a definition many women may relate to. Victoria shares “I’m not an alcoholic. I haven’t had any rock bottom experiences really of being like “f**k my life, I have to change.” It wasn’t like that. It was more, just that it sort of crept in, I think.”


When Victoria’s father got sick, alcohol became more of an emotional crutch “to essentially block out the pain of what was going on” she describes. Paired with the levels of anxiety Victoria felt from drinking, she no longer felt it was worth the small amount of fun she would have. 


Victoria attributes her sobriety as really helping her through the grief of when her father passed away, sharing “I’ve been sitting with my feelings so much more, especially my dad dying. I don’t think I would have coped nearly half as well with him dying if I hadn’t have been sober, because the feelings come up and they’re really painful. But rather than going  “quick, get a vino down you” you know, and then feeling terrible for like the next three days, I’ve just had to deal with it and process it.”


Not only has sobriety been so important for Victoria’s in processing her father’s death, it has transformed her parenting approach, feeling much more patient with her children and becoming less easily irritated. She jokes “I mean, don’t get me wrong, I still get very impatient with them, but it’s not like it used to be.”


For Victoria, having a community of mums around her for support has been a key part of  sobriety. Victoria is the founder of Rebel Mums Club, an online community with in-person events, set up to reduce loneliness in motherhood and build genuine connections with like-minded mums. Although it’s not a strictly sober club, she shares her appreciation to her growing number of connections with other sober mums in the group, who can all lean on each other through this journey. 


A truly inspiring episode full of laugh out loud moments, you can listen to Victoria Emes full conversation with Giovanna Fletcher on all your favourite podcast listening places or watch the full chat below.

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