EP 31 – Mending Fences: Janice Johnson Dowd’s Path to Redemption

In this powerful episode, join host Gary Menkes as he sits down with Janice Johnson Dowd to discuss her inspiring journey of recovery and the transformative power of recovering out loud. Janice’s story is one of resilience and healing, as she shares her personal experiences growing up in an alcoholic home and the detrimental effects addiction had on her family.

From finding solace in sports to becoming a social worker, Janice used her own struggles with addiction to empathize with and support others. Through seeking help and finding support, she overcame her challenges and repaired her relationships.

Tune in to this episode to gain valuable insights from Janice on repairing relationships, making amends, and finding hope after addiction. Discover how she navigated the challenges of parenting while in recovery and how she rebuilt her relationships with her children.

Janice’s journey is a testament to the power of recovery and the importance of repairing relationships. Don’t miss out on this empowering conversation as Janice and Gary delve deep into the complexities of addiction and the path to healing.


Disclaimer:

The views and opinions expressed by our guests are their own and do not necessarily reflect the stand or beliefs of the host or the podcast. We aim to provide a diverse range of perspectives and ideas, fostering open and respectful discussions. We encourage critical thinking and forming your own conclusions. Enjoy the show!



About Our Guest (Janice Johnson Dowd)

Janice Johnson Dowd is a remarkable individual who has overcome tremendous challenges in her life and is now dedicated to helping others on their journey to recovery. Growing up in an alcoholic home, Janice experienced the detrimental effects of addiction firsthand. However, she found solace in sports and eventually became a social worker, using her own experiences to empathize with and support others. Janice’s personal struggles with alcohol addiction led her to seek treatment, and through her own recovery process, she discovered the power of recovering out loud. Janice’s story is one of resilience, healing, and the importance of repairing relationships.

Follow Janice Johnson Dowd on her website, https://www.JaniceJohnsonDowd.com/, and Instagram profile, @parenting_in_recovery, to gain valuable insights, guidance, and tools for repairing relationships and navigating the challenges of parenting while in recovery.


Show Notes

  • [01:14] Janice Johnson Dowd discusses her journey of recovery and the power of recovering out loud.
  • [02:35] Janice shares her personal journey of growing up in an alcoholic home, the dysfunctional dynamics within her family, her struggles with low self-esteem and insecurity, and how she found solace in sports as an escape, ultimately leading her to become a social worker. 
  • [05:59] Janice shares her early career, the impact of sports and motherhood, and her eventual struggle with alcohol addiction.
  • [09:29] Janice shares the impact addiction had on her family and her eventual realization that she needed help, leading to her decision to seek treatment.
  • [10:51] Gary shares his personal experience with addiction, discussing his initial aversion to cocaine, his descent into alcoholism and cocaine addiction, and his journey to recovery through Alcoholics Anonymous. 
  • [14:50] Janice shares her personal journey of going to treatment for alcohol addiction and the impact it had on her children, particularly her daughter who took on a motherly role while she was away, leading to a complex recovery process and the challenges of repairing relationships with her family. 
  • [15:57] Janice shares her experience of seeking support and feeling comfortable in treatment, including her decision to go to a halfway house, the fears of abandonment and rejection she placed upon her family, and the impact of using program jargon on her relationships with her children. 
  • [20:57] Janice shares her personal journey of sobriety, highlighting the pain she caused her children during her early months of recovery and the deep depression she experienced after losing her identity as a mother in a halfway house. 
  • [23:59] Janice shares about getting kicked out of her home and the challenges she faced in finding a new place to stay while maintaining her sobriety. 
  • [25:47] Janice shares her journey of recovery and how seeking support from her therapist, 12-step friends, and maintaining relationships with fellow program participants helped her overcome family of origin issues and navigate the challenges of parenting while staying sober. 
  • [27:56] Janice connects with Kim, another mother in treatment, bonding over their shared experiences as moms and seeking advice on how to navigate the challenges of parenting while in recovery.
  • [29:31] Janice shares her personal journey of overcoming challenges and the lack of resources that led her to write a book on repairing relationships.
  • [30:47] Janice shares her personal journey of repairing relationships and finding hope after addiction.
  • [37:22] Janice shares her personal journey on rebuilding relationships with her children, highlighting the challenges she faced, the time it took to see progress, and the turning point that gave her hope. 
  • [43:39] Janice discusses the importance of relationships and recovery, highlighting that while her own marriage did not survive, it doesn’t mean that marriages can’t be repaired.
  • [45:18] Gary discusses the importance of taking care of oneself and not seeking to repair relationships that may not be beneficial. 
  • [48:45] Janice discusses her book and podcast, which serve as a valuable resource for individuals in early recovery, providing simple and easy-to-understand guidance, tips, and tools for repairing relationships, making amends, and addressing the science of addiction, while also acknowledging the applicability of the principles and tools to those recovering from mental illnesses.

For more incredible and inspiring stories of those who have overcome alcoholism and addiction, tune in to the next episodes of The Begin Again Podcast through:


About Gary Menkes

Gary Menkes was born and raised in Port Washington, NY and struggled with alcoholism since his early teens which took him to places he never wants to go again and which took a toll on his health, relationships and professional endeavors. However, Gary completely transformed his life when he was given the gift of sobriety on May 13, 2006. Determined to break free from the cycle of self-destruction, he embarked on a remarkable journey of recovery.

Today, Gary is an active member of Alcoholics Anonymous in New York, married to the love of his life and father of two amazing children of which he owes all to his sobriety. Gary is now launching his own podcast, The Begin Again Podcast.