Currently Reading: Quit Like A Woman by Holly Whitaker

Holly Whitaker Quit Like a Woman

When I posted a photo on my Instagram that I was currently reading Holly Whitaker’s book ‘Quit Like A Woman’ my DMs as they say, lit up. ‘Not in a lockdown’, and ‘Are you mad?’ were comments by both friends and strangers. Please note – I hadn’t posted it with a question, but the idea of me giving up alcohol definfitely seemed to alarm some people.

The Chrissy Teigen Effect

On the flip side, it was also via Instagram that I first came across this book. When Chrissy Tiegen posted that she had quit drinking, I paused and wanted to immediately know more. We all follow Chrissy Teigen on socials don’t we? Tiegen can be highly entertaining and a lot of the time it seemed so because of alcohol. I saw the post just after Christmas – a time when over indulgence seems completely normal, even though every year I find myself saying, “I don’t want to drink as much as last year”.

And so for 2021, I had already decided that as a household we had to do Dry January and Whitaker’s book felt like the perfect night time reading to assist in what would be a hard habit to break. I haven’t been happy with my lockdown relationship with alcohol. Or perhaps my realtionship with alcohol in general, and I wanted that to change too.

My review so far:

‘Quit Like A Woman’ is an awakening – and a highly informative read. Holly Whitaker is an ex-alcoholic willing to share all the brutal details and memories of her addiction.

I haven’t yet got to the part where she talks about her recovery. I’m currently both transfixed and alarmed, reading her in-depth analysis of the Tobacco Industry. And its scarily similar comparissions to the Alcohol Industry. I’m stunned by the sly and unique way women have been targeted through its advertising and marketing. Ways I don’t think I was ever really concious to.

I have to be honest, as someone who works in fashion and marketing, I feel a little foolish about just how easily alcohol has been manufactured by the media to seem like a necessity. I consider myself to be an intelligent person – and yet there are details in this book that leave me feeling rather stupid.

So many women I know have quit drinking. And all of those women are power houses who run global companies. They’re up on long runs before daybreak, and seem extremely happy and healthy most, if not all of the time.

Like many who have picked up a copy of Whitaker’s Best Selling book, I don’t think my intention is to completely quit drinking, but more so to have a better realtionship and feel like I have ‘more control’ over alcohol. I’d love to go out with my friends (whenever the hell that is) and enjoy a glass or two. Rather than feeling disappointed when I realise the bar is closing. So far, ‘Quit Like a Woman’ is certainly inspiring me to be more mindful and to ask myself questions when I hear myself say “Just one more glass”.

Still reading

I’ll be updating this review as I continue to read the book. I had so many questions about it that I wanted to share some of my thoughts now.

And we’ll be adding it to Bini’s Book Club which means if you know one of the team, a copy will be available to you should you wish to read it too.

(You can read more about Binis’s Book Club here. We’re just waiting for lockdown restrictions to ease before we launch so that we are doing everything we can to protect the spread of the virus).

By Sabina Emrit Harper

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