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Monday Thoughts 12.26.22

“It’s up to us to break generational curses. When they say, ‘It runs in the family.’ You tell them, ‘This is where it runs out.’”

“Dream it. Wish it. Do it.”

“Don’t be afraid to start over. This time you’re not starting from scratch, you’re starting from experience.”

#1 I have a life-threatening problem that once had me.
I now take charge of my life and my well-being.
I accept the responsibility.

As the last remaining days of 2022 come to an end it is an excellent opportunity to review this past year without judgment, but with purpose. This is also a time to reinvest in sobriety and recovery; the WFS New Life Program beginning Statement leads the way.

There is no doubt this past year was filled with uncertainty and isolation as we moved a little further away from a global pandemic and more toward balance and connection. Yet there is also no doubt that this year was filled with joy, growth, and with hope. Sobriety and recovery make life come alive again with a new vision and new tools to manage our lives.

If you are new here or just exploring sobriety, welcome! You have found an empowering community that supports you. Change can feel scary and it can be easy to slip back into unhealthy routines that feel comfortable. Yet the Women for Sobriety New Life Program with its 13 Statements can change your life when practiced daily. Take time to look around and read the WFS Online Forum or find a face-to-face group near you. You will find a community of compassionate women who understand how you feel. You are not alone. You are needed, and you are loved, even if you cannot feel it right now. Embrace Statement #1. You are worth investing in!


Hi 4C Women,

Karen gave wonderful guidance in asking us to review the past year without judgment but with a purpose. Years ago, when I reflected on the year that passed, I focused on the promises I made and didn’t keep. I promised I would handle challenges differently, put myself on the list of self-care, be authentic, and be confident in my choices.

Sadly, I usually ended up berating myself for breaking any promise I made when that year passed. No reflection geared toward understanding, forgiveness, or lessons learned, just pure judgment sprinkled with guilt, shame, regret, and all sorts of negative self-talk. Just the word “purpose” puts an entirely different spin and attitude on how I plan to look at this past year. A purpose is so different from a promise. A purpose moves us in a direction of growth. A promise can sometimes be unrealistic or even impossible to achieve and can unnecessarily cause more pain than the promise itself.

Last Monday I talked about giving a gift to ourselves for acknowledging the positive changes we made, blessings we received, and a self-care plan for 2023. The self-care part of the gift seems to be in line with creating a purpose – a way of working towards healing your well-being and putting you on the list of yes! You may do some of it or even add different plans as the year proceeds.

This year has been difficult and I’ve been feeling a bit sad this holiday season. I think of the years when my mom was still here and how we celebrated her Dec. 27 birthday. The whole family gathered and we laughed, hugged, and shared stories. My mom’s 85th birthday was the last one we celebrated all together. I miss that and my son who lives in CA whom I haven’t seen in over 3 years, my canceled plan to visit PA and NJ this past October. I accept these sad feelings and am grateful to WFS for learning that it’s okay to be sad. It’s better to be authentic as there is a message in those feelings. I no longer have to pretend and hide those feelings in drinking. Now, because of Karen’s wonderful guidance, I have a purpose for 2023. I will make new plans to visit family, hopefully, see my son and take care of my health in a more specific manner. I feel hope among the sadness of this holiday and that is what I am holding onto – HOPE and a PURPOSE!

Think about your purpose. Take time to write it down as a guide and know that even a purpose can change as you change and grow in your recovery.
Bonded in accepting responsibility for your willingness to change and discovering a purpose as you move forward, Dee

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Monday Thoughts 12.19.22

women for sobriety decorative image responsibility

“If life is a stage and you are your own agent, then don’t hesitate to play the character you wish to play.”

Richelle E. Goodrich

“You’ll never know who you are unless you shed who you pretend to be.”

Vironika Tugaleva

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

#13 I am responsible for myself and for my actions.

I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts, and my life.

Sobriety and Statement #13 in action lay a foundation for long-term recovery. While the Statements can be utilized in any order, this Statement is a part of Level Six of the WFS New Life Program which focuses on “A New Self.”  But what exactly is a ‘New Self’? I am confident that if you asked ten different women what that means, you could get eleven different answers. However, one thing is for certain: it’s a New Life without a substance of choice.

For many women, including myself, it was easier to try to fit into someone else’s idea of what life was all about. It didn’t matter if I was trying to fit a round peg into a square hole. By adjusting who I was at the core for someone/thing else, it became a recipe for overwhelming feelings of inadequacy and lack. To combat this, alcohol was a tool (or so I thought) that I reached for but that simply broke the round peg.

Yet through that shattering, something beautiful emerged…A New Self! A self that could be molded into a perfect fit. Statement #13 asserts “I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts, and my life.” It is incredibly freeing to simply be yourself. You are the designer of your life, so make it your own. Statement #13 is a reminder that it’s a process. You can shed parts that are no longer needed while embracing or inviting parts that you do desire. Today is a new day and a brand-new week, make it your own!



Hi 4C Women,

I am grateful for being in charge of my mind, my thoughts, and my life. Yet, there are still times when I do some wishful thinking that someone would take over my responsibilities for just a few days. Do you ever feel that way?

With the holidays, it seems more challenging and I try to follow my own advice about giving something up to give myself more self-care time without guilt. Now I think that qualifies as being responsible!

For the first time in many years, I did not wear myself out with over-decorating. A lot of that has to do with the pain I’ve been experiencing. Yet, as I looked around my snowman extravaganza, I still experienced joy. When I was drinking, I pretended to be someone I was not. I did what was expected and never thought of asking for help or lessening my tasks. WFS has helped me to realize the strength in asking for support even when I still feel slightly uncomfortable, to do less and be honest about my limitations, and to find joy in what I can accomplish.

I do this exercise each year with the group I moderate. I provide them with 3 questions to answer, a small gift bag of their choice and ask them to put this bag under their tree or whatever holiday they celebrate in order to practice self-care, have recognition of the blessings they received, and acknowledge the changes they have made during the year. It’s the gift they give to themselves and to always put themselves on that gift list.

1.    Acknowledgment of positive change(s) made this year
2.    Blessing(s) received this year
3.    Self-care plans for 2023

I hope you will consider doing this for yourself in acknowledging your personal growth and creating plans to continue being in charge of your mind, your thoughts, and your life. Be the gift you want and deserve to receive.
Bonded in being responsible, in charge, being authentic, and practicing self-care, Dee

Donate While You Shop – At No Cost To You!

Did you know you can donate to worthy causes like Women for Sobriety while you shop for holiday gifts when you use AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmileyou can elect to donate 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice – at no cost to you. This includes WFS!

If you already shop on Amazon, or if you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift for your loved one, we invite you to shop at and select Women for Sobriety as your charity of choice.

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Monday Thoughts 12.12.22

“Your crown has been bought and paid for. Put it on your head and wear it.”

Maya Angelou

“There will be haters, there will be doubters, there will be non-believers, and then there will be you proving them wrong.”

Jennifer Allen

“Know the truth. You have it in you to climb every mountain.”

Hiral Nagda 

#12 I am a competent woman, and I have much to give life.

This is what I am and I shall know it always.

She told me that I couldn’t do it and that failure would follow. Did she know me better than I knew myself? There was a choice to make and I decided she didn’t know me as well as I knew myself. She hadn’t known me for that long yet here she was, making predictions about my life, all the while painting the future with a broad stroke. Staring at her, I felt this wasn’t fair and silently questioned what was happening. In that beautiful, spectacular moment, I refused to give consent to fall in line and fail. Statement #12 swirled through me, though I hadn’t even begun to practice the WFS Statements yet.

This was a new path to follow and our founder, Jean Kirkpatrick, Ph.D. had opened the door to a community of welcoming women; capable, competent, caring, and compassionate women! Reflecting back, it was an incredible act of strength to move out of my comfort zone and into something unfamiliar. This is what WFS and Statement #12 in action do… empower women in endless ways.

Sobriety and recovery take work but practicing Statement #12 results in a healthy belief in self and contributes to our well-being as well as to life. In the past, there was nothing healthy that I recognized from within, yet because of Statement #12, I am able to embrace those parts but also encourage inner growth and development. Thanks to Women for Sobriety, and all the women who cheered me on (and still do) I have become my own cheerleader. Go ahead and shine in your 4C Crown this week!



Hi 4C Women,

When I reflect on old messages, I realize that I permitted other people’s opinions to define me. If only I had listened to those who believed in me rather than focus on the negative messages. In my youth, I never questioned people in authority for I had no life experience to counter their input. They had to be right, didn’t they? It was a difficult journey to start believing I was and am a competent woman. Thank goodness for WFS and this Statement.

I worked for the YWCA whose mission is the empowerment of women and girls. I created many programs that addressed empowerment after I was promoted to the Director of the Women’s Program Department. I was skeptical that I could provide opportunities for women to grow emotionally when I was stuck in unbelief about myself. It seemed that others believed in me long before I believed in myself. And during that time, I learned about WFS. I invited Jean Kirkpatrick to speak at the YW to educate others about addiction. I asked her if perhaps I had a problem. She looked at me and said, “If you have to ask, you probably do.” Again, a woman in authority in my eyes but this time, her response was accurate. I decided to quit drinking 34 years ago by solely utilizing the WFS Program, became a facilitator when the internet didn’t exist (grateful it does now), served on the WFS Board for 27 years, and have led groups for 33 years. In my wildest dreams, I never imagined being competent enough to take on these challenges or to share as that would have been seen as boasting. Today, I am proud to share the life changes I have made due to the WFS program.

Opening the meetings by saying I am a competent woman felt so uncomfortable at first but as time went on, I began to believe it, and live it. I am competent and empowered and that includes acknowledging when I also need input, information, and additional support and I’m not afraid to ask for it! Now that defines competence and confidence to me. We are a sisterhood that provides a safe place for bonding, to express our feelings and thoughts respectfully without judgment.  Because of the WFS empowering statements, the YW welcomed my request to have meetings there and accepted, without judgment, my problem with drinking. It took a lot of courage to share this with my supervisor. It was an amazing experience and I will always be grateful to the YW for that acceptance.

As you think about being competent, what comes to mind? Do you believe in yourself? Have you turned off the old negative messages from the past and replaced them with your true value today? If asked to describe your values, what would they be? Today, I would say I am resilient, courageous, trust my instincts, listen and continue to learn life lessons from my own experience and what others generously share with me.

Bonded in being and believing you are competent and have much to give life, Dee

WFS Online: Join (if you haven’t already) and visit often!!

The new WFS Online platform is a space to access virtual meetings, make the daily pledge, and give/receive support 24/7 this holiday season!

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Monday Thoughts 12.5.22

Women for Sobriety enthusiasm next exit sign

“Enthusiasm has an almost magical path to a happy and successful life.”

Patti Blamire

“The passion of genuine enthusiasm is an energy you can generate yourself. How? Simple: by focusing your time, effort, and energy on those ideas, activities and pursuits that get you excited.”

Rita Davenport

“The energy of the mind is the essence of life.”


#11 Enthusiasm is my daily exercise.

I treasure the moments of my New Life.

Self-care is an active part of practicing Statement #11. Self-care is not selfish; in fact, self-neglect would be the opposite. Before sobriety and recovery, neglect was commonplace. Self-care is also multi-faceted; we can apply it physically, emotionally, mentally, and/or spiritually.

Initially, I thought self-care was all about massages and manicures. While those two activities can definitely be something to look forward to, identifying basic needs leads the way toward taking care of self. What are our basic needs? If you look at Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” it begins with survival such as air, water, food, shelter, and sleep, then progresses to security and safety, next is the need to belong, followed by the need for esteem (self-worth, respect, competence, etc.), and lastly the need for self-actualization: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.

Sobriety is the beginning of self-care and when basic needs are met, treasuring our New Life feels natural.  In our WFS Program booklet, it states “Enthusiasm adds fire to life and provides the energy for accomplishment.” Some days Statement #11 is a feeling of immense wonder at the world, other days it is the smallest of gestures that catch my eye or heart. Either way, it is a feeling of contentment infused with joy that flows from daily self-care. This week, identify ways to practice self-care. Here are 4 ways to jump into caring for ourselves:

1.   Recovery: Read the 13 WFS Statements each morning, and choose one to focus on each week. What can you do to insure your sobriety? Create a 5-point plan to prepare.

2.   Sleep: Watch screen time and caffeine, both of which can interrupt sleep. Create a comfy nighttime routine to train your mind and body that it is time to rest.

3.   Meals: Sugar can cause cravings and make it difficult to relax. Eat protein, and focus on balanced meals.

4.   Connection: Isolation can be dangerous to sobriety. We need connection in our New Life, the newly updated WFS Online Forum is available 24/7.



Hi 4C Women,

Feeling enthusiastic can be challenging for some, especially at this time of the year. When I was married, I was the person who made the holidays happen. As a single woman, that responsibility hasn’t changed. However, I still get excited when I start decorating as it creates such fun and loving memories. It is the added overwhelming tasks that accompany the everyday tasks that can take an emotional and physical toll.

Several years ago, I decided to reduce activities that no longer gave me that wonderful feeling of enthusiasm. The first to go was baking cookies as it really wasn’t joyful for me. I felt guilty at first because this was a huge tradition in my family. Each year, I felt so much better and my enthusiasm grew for doing the things I enjoyed. This is pure self-care. The next was sending cards to people I saw every day. Just that one additional change gave me time to write a personal note to those not close by that I cared about and missed. I began to think of enthusiasm as being grateful – grateful that I am in charge of making choices that bring me that enthusiastic joy.

I agree with Karen’s initial impression of self-care and how she began to realize that it was about feeling contentment infused with joy. Since I keep my tree up all year, I have learned that joy comes with each change of season decorating. It makes those necessary and added tasks more bearable. I am also learning that it’s okay when I feel less than enthusiastic. It’s a temporary feeling which means for me that I may feel this way for an hour, a day, or a few days but it will not stay as it did in my drinking days. It stayed way too long and controlled me rather than me looking for solutions, a joyful distraction. Thank goodness for this Statement that alerts me to the need for a positive change.

I once read an article on enthusiasm and it said to be yourself! Pretending is so draining. This is why I acknowledge my authentic feelings. Those feelings are telling me something and I am learning to listen. This has evolved at times to give me a purpose, a reason to put a smile on my face and make a difference in my attitude – back to gratefulness.

If you are feeling overwhelmed or drained of energy doing what is “expected” of you, perhaps think about giving up one task that takes away your enthusiasm, your joy in doing. What would that be? With more “you” time and energy, what activity would you enhance or do that you’ve been wanting to do?

Bonded in self-care, gratitude, and feeling enthusiastic in the process, Dee

Donate While You Shop – At No Cost To You!

Did you know you can donate to worthy causes like Women for Sobriety while you shop for holiday gifts when you use AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmileyou can elect to donate 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice – at no cost to you. This includes WFS!

If you already shop on Amazon, or if you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift for your loved one, we invite you to shop at and select Women for Sobriety as your charity of choice.