How are you doing this week?

I’ve been honoring World Mental Health Day and National Coming Out Day this week. Make sure to follow me on Facebook (click the icon at the bottom of the page) to check out my two recent posts on these topics that have both affected my life and many I love very personally.

I also finished reading Girl on the Train this week. I didn’t love the book and wouldn’t really recommend it unless you like a psychological thriller and a lot of writing about alcohol. (It could also be potentially triggering depending on where you are in your relationship to alcohol and whether you still experience a lot of shame around what has happened to you while you’ve blacked out, thankfully I’ve released that).

That being said, something really struck me about the characters. The main character obviously had a problem with alcohol, the entire premise of the book was based on this. However, one of the secondary characters also finds herself drinking towards the end of the book, as she feels her world falling apart.

What did they have in common?
They both felt profoundly lonely.
They both felt unseen and misunderstood.

Alcohol helped soothe the pain of this loneliness and lack recognition.

You’ll notice how this experience also ties directly into the experience of many people who struggle with mental health and those of us living life under the LGTT2BQQII aka “queer rainbow of sexual and gender diversity.”

There’s a reason why people with mental health challenges and queer folk struggle with alcohol and drugs at much higher rates than the general population.

One of my first mentors in the self-development space, Dara McKinley, describes our need for “Vitamin See.”

“Vitamin See is a no-brainer for babies and children. They demand it and we pour it on, creating an obvious positive outcome. Then, as we become “rational adults,” our need for Vitamin See is hung in the closet. With no map for guiding us to this critical necessity, we are all left to fend for ourselves. We either become desperate from our hunger for it, which fuels competition and posturing, or we pretend it’s not important, which leaves us drained and depressed.”

For many of us here, a lack of Vitamin See leads us to “supplement” with other substances and behaviors, that attempt to fill the void: alcohol, drugs, sugar, food, obsessive exercising, sex, overachieving, perfectionism, excessive helping etc.

Does any of this feel familiar?

Have you ever been made to feel bad about wanting “attention?”

I feel like there was a shift that happened somewhere between childhood and early adolescence that my want and need to feel seen became a bad thing.

Parents and society reinforced this by reinforcing certain kinds of validation (being nice, academic achievements) over others, such as being a wildly creative, expressive young woman.

I was speaking to someone for her first consultation this past Wednesday and I asked her, “what are the biggest BENEFITS of your relationship to alcohol?”

At first, she balked at the question, and blurted out “wow, that’s a good question, nobody’s ever asked me that before!”

However, after her initial surprise, it didn’t take her long to list the benefits of excitement, connection, conversation, loss of inhibitions and self-confidence. It also helped her feel comfortable and open up on dates.

How many of these have to do with being SEEN?

Probably almost every single one.

My own relationship to alcohol was very interconnected with my need to be seen, loved and understood… I just didn’t know how to “do” that on my own. And I learned from a young age that alcohol could “do” a lot of that for me.

Ever since I began this journey of redefining my relationship to alcohol, I realized how important it was to be able to share my experiences with others and how much more powerful we are when we come together to support one another… to truly see and be seen. 

As I mentioned in my last email, I have very few spots available for private coaching. I’d love to work with you now. Remember, that if you sign up with me this month, you can also participate in the Be More Membership for 6 months for FREE.

Click here to set up a time to talk.

Here are a few shares from current clients and members of the Be More members on how they are able to show up and feel truly seen: 

“This feels like a safe space. I don’t feel I have to edit my thoughts or emotions to fit what is expected, which is HUGE b/c (as you know) I struggle with trying to show up as “perfect.”

“I feel like all of me – including the imperfections, the weaknesses, the struggles – not only have a place here, but are honored in the most genuine of ways. Most self care stuff I’ve done in the past has felt disingenuous. In my short time here and working with you, I feel a deep sense of being loved no matter what (for real, not just saying it without meaning) and mutual understanding that I have never felt. And that now that I think more about it, I think what makes this group and coaching so special is that genuineness of care gives me strength, courage, and safety to be more vulnerable and open with myself, so that I can begin to deeply “see” myself for the first time.”

“When I feel like I have no place to go, I remember that I have HERE to go. Fully, completely ME. Real and raw. And it is welcomed with open arms. There is a support network from our hostess/facilitator/coach but also the incredible support from the group. It is a very powerful experience.”

If you would like to experience being truly seen and supported, let’s connect.