Around this time last year, we published the Twitter Influencer Awards in the ‘recovery’ category. We received positive feedback for this piece of content. However, many of those who receive an award were industry ‘heavy weights’. This is because the Twitter awards are largely determined by the ratio Twitter ‘followers’ to ‘following’, along with a few more quality factors. This means many of the smaller and more useful bloggers do dot appear in the awards listing for Twitter influencers.

Giving smaller bloggers the attention they deserve

To overcome this weakness, we’ve decided to alter our approach in 2015 by instead listing what we feel are the best recovery blogs. When ranking the below blogs, we examined the quality of these blogs rather than the size of their audience. We judged these blogs on a set criteria which is explained below.

2015: A busy year for recovery bloggers

2015 has been an active year for those who participate in the addiction and recovery category. We’ve seen an increase in opiate-related and cocaine-related deaths, a debate regarding cannabis legalisation in the UK Parliament and an indication that the Irish Government wishes to decriminalise many illegal substances. All of this has been diligently covered, along with a bunch of personal stories, how-tos and excellent interviews.

A number of bloggers have diligently covered these stories, often voluntarily and without pay. These bloggers help educate the general public on issues such as drug, alcohol and behavioural addiction, particularly in the field of recovery. These bloggers also provide a lifeline for many people who live in recovery by offering support, advice and inspiration when it is needed most.

Why being a recovery blogger requires guts of steel

These bloggers have, often unknowingly, prevented relapse scenarios for thousands of people now living in recovery. What’s more, these blogs provide a powerful motivational push for many addicts initially considering their recovery options.

Many of these bloggers are living in recovery themselves, and writing blog posts on these experiences shines a light on otherwise highly personal and emotional periods of these people’s life. Some of these bloggers are family members of people affected by addiction. Sharing these experiences with strangers clearly requires courage. And let’s not forget the legitimate risk of being stigmatised as a result of sharing these personal experiences. These courageous bloggers share their experiences regarding addiction despite the very real social and professional consequences of doing so.

Categories of blog we cover

The blogs listed below fall into two broad categories. The first category consists of bloggers discussing their own or close family member’s experiences with addiction. These bloggers offer a sort of narrative flow of their experiences, often in a ‘stream of consciousness’ style. The second category of blog takes on more of an official tone. These blogs offer distilled ‘to the point’ advice on beating addiction.  Further, many of the blogs blur the lines between these two categories.

How we chose these blogs

When choosing to include these blogs, we factored in the below quality signals:

  • Frequency of updates
  • Originality of content
  • Emotional impact of content
  • Depth of content

Without further ado, we now list these little-known recovery blogs you absolutely MUST follow in 2016!  The below blogs are simply listed in alphabetical order.

1. A.A.R.M.E.D with Facts

Site: http://aarmedwithfacts.wordpress.com
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Name:Juliet Abram
Location:Ohio, USA
About:This blog is run by Juliet Abram. Juliet is a writer and artist. She is also a former court-mandated attendee of Alcoholics Anonymous. Juliet’s blog is anti-AA. Her activist cause for 12-step alternatives in Ohio is the AARMED with Facts blog.
Media enquiries:sos.ne.ohio@gmail.com

 

2. Adam Sledd

Site: http://adamsledd.com
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Name:Adam Sledd
Location:Pennsylvania, USA
About:Adam Sledd recovered from a substance use disorder. Adam was addicted for 27 years. Following this, he finally decided to get clean by entering a drug court program. Adam favours what he terms ‘self-directed, empowered recovery’ over the 12 step alternative.
Media enquiries:adamsledd93@gmail.com

 

3.  Addiction & Recovery News

Site:http://addictionandrecoverynews.wordpress.com
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Name:Jason Schwartz
Location:Michigan, USA
About:This blog is run by Jason Schwartz. Jason is the Clinical Director of Dawn Farm—a non-profit treatment program in Ann Arbor, Michigan. This blog started out as a list of news links sent to Jason’s staff so they could stay on top of industry-related happenings. However, the tri-weekly (or so) email turned into an ongoing resource for those who want to be on the up and up of what is going on in the world of addiction and recovery. This blog is a great source for headlines and an even better source for inspiring efforts to help addicts in need.
Media enquiries:jschwartz@dawnfarm.org

 

4. A Hangover Free Life

Site:http://ahangoverfreelife.com
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Name:Lou
Location:Cambridge, UK
About:This British blog is run by Lou. Lou offers personal blog posts, how-tos, interviews and workshops. This blog is an excellent resource for anyone living in recovery. Lou also includes a great section on mocktails, including in-depth recipes and photos.
Media enquiries:Click here

 

5. Brian Donohue

Site:http://briandonohue.org
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Name:Brian Donohue
Location:New York, USA
About:This blog is run by Brian Donohue. Brian has an MA degree from Long Island University in clinical psychology, and has worked in private practice as a therapist with a loosely Jungian perspective. He has worked with depressed people, anxious people, and people undergoing major life changes, challenges, and crises.
Media enquiries:dailyrev@gmail.com

 

6. Bye-Bye Beer

Site: http://byebyebeer.wordpress.com
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Name:Kristen Rybandt
Location:Pennsylvania, USA
About:Kristen started her blog in 2011 ago while newly sober and quickly discovered a supportive community and just how many ways there are to get and stay sober. These days she writes more about finding balance and celebrating
Media enquiries:byebyebeer@gmail.com

 

7. Drinking Diaries

Site:http://drinkingdiaries.com
Blog thumbnail: pic1
Name:Leah & Caren
Location:New York, USA
About:Drinking Diaries is a forum for women to share, vent, express, and discuss their drinking stories without judgment. The blog is moderated by adult children of alcoholics.
Media enquiries:leaheps@verizon.net
caren@carenosten.com

 

8. Drinking to Distraction

Site:http://drinkingtodistraction.com
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Name: Jenna Hollenstein
Location: New York, USA
About:This blog is run by Jenna Hollenstein. Jenna is a professional nutrition therapist. The blog includes personal stories, how-tos and podcast style interviews. Good information on different ‘holistic therapies’ and nutrition. Highly recommended.
Media enquiries:hollend2d@gmail.com

 

9. Every Woman Has an Eating Disorder

Site: http://everywomanhasaneatingdisorder.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Dr. Stacey Rosenfeld
Location:Florida, USA
About:This blog is run by Dr. Stacy Rosenfeld. Stacy is a clinical psychologist who treats patients with eating disorders, anxiety/depression, substance use issues, and relationship difficulties. Includes interviews, how-tos and personal stories. A great source for those suffering from an eating disorder (which all too commonly accompany addiction).
Media enquiries:drstaceyny@gmail.com

 

10. Growing up Chaotic

Site:http://growingupchaotic.com
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Name:Dawn Clancy
Location:New York, USA
About:This blog is run by Dawn Clancy. Dawn manages the blog as well as a popular podcast that provides a 360° view on all topics related to the addict’s or alcoholic’s family and friends, codependency, domestic violence, drugs and culture, mental health, recovery and siblings and addiction.
Media enquiries:dawnclancy@ymail.com

 

11. Guess What Normal Is

Site:http://guesswhatnormalis.com
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Name:Amy Eden
Location:California, USA
About:This blog is run by Amy Eden. Amy is a writer, book author, and blogger. She created the self-help blog guesswhatnormalis.com in 2005, a home-away-from-home for adult children of alcoholics and people seeking to heal issues caused by adverse childhood experiences. The blog includes personal stories and useful how-tos. Blog posts are very well written and refer to other useful sources of research and inspiration. Highly recommended.
Media enquiries:amyeden@guesswhatnormalis.com

 

12. Heal Write Now

Site:http://healwritenow.com
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Name:Christine Cissy White
Location:Massachusetts, USA
About:This blog is run by Christine Cissy White. Christine writes about trauma, abuse recovery and learning to inhabit the body not hopped up on numb. Christine has been published in the Boston Globe, Literary Mama, Ms. Magazine Online and Elephant Journal.
Media enquiries:cissy_white@comcast.net

 

13. Heros in Recovery

Site: http://heroesinrecovery.com/blog
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Name:Various
Location:Tennessee, USA
About:This blog is a team effort. Heroes in Recovery celebrates the heroic efforts of those who seek the addiction and mental health help they need without feeling ashamed or isolated. This grassroots movement is intended to remove the social stigma and to connect those in recovery through sharing our stories and engaging in community together.
Media enquiries:info@heroesinrecovery.com

 

13. Imperfect Messenger

Site:http://imperfectmessenger.us
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Name:Christopher Dale
Location:New Jersey, USA
About:This blog is run by Christopher Dale. Chris is a recovering alcoholic and freelance writer who frequently covers recovery-based issues. ImperfectMessenger.us covers topics surrounding sobriety and also discusses politics and social issues.
Media enquiries:http://imperfectmessenger.us/progress-a-mission-statement.html

 

14.  It’s a Lush Life

Site:http://itsalushlife.com/blog
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Name:Allison Hudson
Location:North Carolina, USA
About:This blog is run by Allison Hudson. Allison began It’s a Lush Life after losing her brother to a drug overdose. She considers the site, and her own journey in sobriety, a living amends to him; a pouring out of love from someone who may otherwise feel helpless in the wake of addiction’s destructive path. It’s a Lush Life is an excellent resource for those who have lost a loved one to the disease of addiction, especially if they struggle (or have struggled) with substance abuse themselves. Hudson is passionate about ending the shame and stigma associated with addiction. She writes open and honestly about her struggles with alcoholism, life in recovery, losing her brother and finding faith through it all.
Media enquiries:allison@itsalushlife.com

 

15. Last Call 2015

Site:http://lastcall2015.blogspot.com
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Name:Nancy Carr
Location:Florida, USA
About:This blog is written by Nancy. Nancy began writing short stories and essays in her free time a few years ago. In this blog she discusses recovery, alcoholism and addiction. Nancy’s blog offers many personal stories as well as an abundance of sound practical advice for people who live in recovery.
Media enquiries:nlcarr@outlook.com

 

16. Laura McKowen

Site:http://lauramckowen.com
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Name:Laura McKowen
Location:Massachusetts, USA
About:This blog is run by Laura McKowen. In this blog, Laura offers personal stories about her battle with alcoholism and subsequent recovery. Laura also runs the Home Podcast. Well worth a read and I recommend this blog to anyone who struggles to accept their addiction.
Media enquiries:laura@iflyatnight.com

17. Living with my Drug Abusing Teenager

Site:http://livingwithmydrugabusingteenager.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Susan Mansfield
Location:England, UK
About:This blog is run by Susan Mansfield. Susan is a single mother of three children, the oldest of whom is an alcoholic and drug addict. She writes about her experiences of how living with an addict affects us all in many ways. Susan grew up in America but now lives in the UK.
Media enquiries: Not available

 

18.  Living without Alcohol

Site:http://livingwithoutalcohol.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Mrs. D (pseudonym)
Location:New Zealand
About:This blog is run by Mrs D. Mrs. D is a New Zealand housewife who started anonymously blogging about her struggle with alcohol after realising her drinking was out of control and she needed to stop. She feels that writing out her thoughts and feelings in the early days of sobriety was immensely strengthening, and the community of support that soon grew up around her blog meant Mrs D was able to develop a robust and lasting recovery. Mrs D is now over four years sober and continues to update her blog weekly with all the goings-on of her busy, domesticated, alcohol-free life.
Media enquiries:mrsdisgoingwithout@gmail.com

 

19. Mothers Heartbreak

Site:http://mothersheartbreak.com
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Name:Mary Beth Cichocki
Location:Florida, USA
About:Mothers Heart Break is maintained by Mary Beth Cichocki. Mary lost her son, Matt, to a drug overdose in January 2015. Mary devotes her time to raising awareness to the dangers of drug use. Mothers Heart Break details Mary’s experiences with her son’s drug addiction and subsequent death. Mary now consults with Florida lawmakers and Mary specifically advocates laws to better regulate Florida’s many ‘sober living homes’. Many of these clinics are entirely unregulated and in some cases many offer a service which can be considered immoral and dangerous to their ‘patients’ health.
Media enquiries:mmassey4@verizon.net

20. CMC Blog

Site: http://motivationandchange.com/cmcs-blog-for-individuals-and-families
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Name:Various
Location:New York, USA
About:

The Center for Motivation and Change (CMC) consists of a body of experienced and highly dedicated psychologists. These psychologists have authored many esteemed books on the subject of addiction treatment. They’ve also developed effective addiction treatments and training systems. The blog represents their wider community.  Their goals is to uncover effective treatments for both addicts and their family members. They aim to change the underlying conversation going on around addiction and addiction treatment. They aim to achieve this by shifting the emphasis away from stigma and towards growth instead.

Media enquiries:http://motivationandchange.com/press-inquiries/

 

21. My Life as 3D

Site:http://mylifeas3d.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Dean Dauphinais
Location:Michigan, USA
About:This blog is run by Dean Dauphinais. Dean dedicates the blog to breaking the stigma associated with addiction. The blog allows Dean a platform for thoughts on addiction. Dean is the Father of a Person in Long-Term Recovery from Addiction, a member of the Parent Support Network at the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, and a Lead Advocate for Heroes in Recovery.
Media enquiries: Not available

 

22. My Life in the Middle Ages

Site:http://mylifeinthemiddleages.wordpress.com
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Name:Gayle Saks-Rodriguez
Location:Boston, Massachusetts
About:This blog is run by Gayle Saks-Rodriguez. Gayle works as a Substance Abuse Counselor at an adult-male residential program. Although Gayle is not in recovery herself, she continues to learn invaluable and immeasurable from the amazingly resilient men she works with. Gayle offers a fascinating look into the otherwise closed world of a professional substance abuse counsellor. Well recommended!
Media enquiries:gaylesaks@gmail.com

23. Naturally Sober

Site:http://naturallysober.com
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Name:Cathy
Location:New Jersey, USA
About:Cathy runs this blog. Cathy has struggled with addiction for many years and she’s now 4 1/2 years sober. She uses here blog, Naturally Sober, to show people that it’s totally possible to live free, happy & healthy without alcohol. Naturallysober.com was created to share legit resources that help Cathy stay sober, manage her anxiety, and feel awesome.
Media enquiries:cathy@naturallysober.com

24. Parents of an Addict

Site:http://parentsofanaddict.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Ron and Darlene
Location:Kansas, USA
About:This blog is run by Ron and Darlene. Ron and Darlene are parents of a former addict now living in recovery. However, Ron and Darlene continue to share their experiences with the public through this fantastic blog. This blog is particularly useful for parents or over loved ones of an addiction/recovered addiction. This blog is a good companion to an Alanon programme.
Media enquiries:teamplayer@aol.com

25. Sandy Swenson

Site:http://sandyswenson.com
Blog thumbnail: pic1
Name:Sandy Swenson
Location:Texas, USA
About:This blog is run by Sandy Swenson. Sandy’s son suffered from an addiction to drugs and alcohol. The blog allows Sandy a platform to discuss her son’s experiences with addiction to a wider audience.
Media enquiries:http://www.sandyswenson.com/contact/

26. She Recovers

Site: http://sherecovers.co/blog
Blog thumbnail:pic1 
Name:Dawn Nickel, Taryn Strong and Sharonlee Latham and Asley Prosser
Location:British Columbia, Canada
About:This blog is run by Dawn Nickel, Taryn Strong and Sharonlee Latham and Asley Prosser . She Recovers is dedicated to women now living in recovery. This blog is an excellent resource for women suffering from addiction or now living in recovery, and the blog is one I often recommend to female patients of ours at Ocean Recovery Centre.
Media enquiries:dawn@sherecovers.co

27. Since Right Now

Site:http://sincerightnow.com/home
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Name:Chris Aguirre
Location:Missouri, USA
About:This blog is run by Chris Aguirre. Chris is a former alcoholic now living in recovery. Chris offers many resources, how-tos, personal stories and podcasts. Highly recommended!
Media enquiries:ChrisA@SinceRightNow.com

28. Soberia

Site:http://sober-bia.blogspot.co.uk
Blog thumbnail: pic1
Name:Amy
Location:North Carolina, USA
About:Sober Nation is run by Amy. Amy is a former alcoholic who utilised her blog in getting sober. The blog therefore offers an intimate look into the life of an addict as she attained her sobriety.
Media enquiries:dearsoberbia@gmail.com

29. Sober Julie

Site:http://soberjulie.com
Blog thumbnail:pic1 
Name:Julie Elsdon-Height
Location:Ontario, Canada
About:This blog is run by Julie Elsdon-Height. Julie’s blog is jam-packed with ideas for recipes, travel articles, family fun, tips for sobriety, and tons of ideas for leading a better (more creative, more enjoyable) life.
Media enquiries:soberjulie@gmail.com

30. Sober Senorita

Site:http://sobersenorita.com
Blog thumbnail:pic1 
Name:Kelly
Location:Florida, USA
About:This blog is run by Kelly Fitzgerald. Kelly is an advocate for breaking the stigma of addiction. Striving to fit in with her peers and living the party girl lifestyle, Kelly quickly discovered her drinking habits were much more extreme than others, with devastating consequences. After escaping to Cancun, Mexico and living abroad for five years, she got sober in a spring breakers’ paradise. Today, she lives in Florida and writes about living life as a 20-something sober girl.
Media enquiries:kelly@sobersenorita.com

31.  Thirsty Still

Site:http://thirstystill.blogspot.co.uk
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Name:Thirsty Still
Location: 
About:This blog is run by Thirsty Still. Thirsty is a 47-year-old woman who uses her blog to document her attempts at ‘recovery’. She documents her relapses and subsequent recovery periods in some depth. We liked this blog as it offers an honest account of what the ‘recovery’ process. Thirsty’s experiences mirror many of the people we treat here at Ocean Recovery Centre.
Media enquiries:thirsty.still@gmail.com

32.  Twelve Wellness

Site:http://twelvewellness.com/blog
Blog thumbnail:pic1 
Name:Matthew Lovitt
Location:Texas, USA
About:This blog is run by Matthew Lovitt. Matthew is a Nutrition Therapy Practitioner and specialises in nutrition for people in recovery. He works extensively with clients in long-term treatment for substance abuse disorders and maintains a private practice where he teaches clients how to plan and prepare healthy, therapeutic meals. Matthew is the go-to guy when it comes to nutrition and addiction.
Media enquiries:http://twelvewellness.com/contact/

33.  Veronica Valli

Site:http://veronicavalli.com/blog
Blog thumbnail: pic1
Name:Veronica Valli
Location:Luton, UK
About:This blog is run by fellow Brit Veronica Valli. Veronica promotes fun and happiness in recovery through her blog. Veronica’s blog is very upbeat and essential reading for former addicts who are new to recovery. Veronica also offers a fantastic interview series known as ‘Recovery Rocks’ where she talks to other people living in recovery.
Media enquiries:http://veronicavalli.com/contact/

 34.  William White Papers

Site:http://williamwhitepapers.com/blog
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Name:Bill White
Location:Florida, USA
About:This blog is written by the esteemed William (“Bill”) White. William is an Emeritus Senior Research Consultant at Chestnut Health Systems, past-chair of the board of Recovery Communities United, and a volunteer consultant to Faces and Voices of Recovery. For the past 25 years, his work has focused on mapping the prevalence, pathways, styles, and stages of long-term addiction recovery.
Media enquiries:bwhite@chestnut.org