On December 29th, 2020, model Chrissy Teigen posted a video to Instagram of herself dancing. Someone commented, “I need whatever drugs you’re on,” and she replied, “4 weeks sober!” Her joy was directly tied to her sobriety.
After losing her baby in September, Teigen experienced immense grief and depression. Someone she’s referred to as her “doctor and friend” gave her the book Quit Like a Woman by Holly Whitaker.
The book—which made it to the New York Times bestseller list—is about our toxic, pervasive culture around alcohol, and particularly how it impacts women. It provides tools that Whitaker has used since she became sober in 2013.
I came across Whitaker’s former blog Hip Sobriety—which talks about her experience in recovery—back in 2015, when I was newly sober and googling anything I could find about addiction. Her work got to me when I needed it, as it seems to have done for Teigen. Teigen’s posts about sobriety to her large following will hopefully encourage more people struggling to reconsider their relationship to alcohol. All of this shows the importance of public discourse about these topics.
For Teigen’s part, after reading the book, she was “done with making an a** of myself in front of people (I’m still embarrassed), tired of day drinking and feeling like sh*t by 6, not being able to sleep. I have been sober ever since.”
In a 2017 Cosmopolitan interview, Teigen talked about drinking too much. “I got used to being in hair and makeup and having a glass of wine,” she said. “Then that glass of wine would carry over into me having one before the awards show. And then a bunch at the awards show.” At the time, she was cutting back on drinking rather than quitting.
It’s common for people to try moderating their substance use, even several times, before getting sober. Teigen said she used to think people who cut out alcohol entirely were “nutty,” but has come to understand the need for it on a personal level. There is still a stigma around alcohol use disorder—but people like Teigen, Whitaker, and so many others are doing the work to break it.
Teigen is witnessing incredible changes in her life in her first few months sober, and she has been documenting those joys. When her husband John Legend performed at the 2021 inauguration, she posted on Twitter, “Just incredible to be here. Sober. I know that’s weird but it’s like…a different world for me. Everything is new and better.”
If you are struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder, there is hope. TruHealing Centers offers high-quality treatment for addiction and mental health disorders in facilities across the country. Our staff—many of whom are in recovery themselves—will help you build joy in recovery. Call an admissions specialist at 410-593-0005.