EP 33 – Jenny Leone: From Victim to Survivor to Inspiration

Join host Gary Menkes in this raw and inspiring episode of The Begin Again Podcast as he sits down with special guest Jenny Leone. In this powerful conversation, Jenny opens up about her incredible journey of overcoming childhood trauma, addiction, and the challenges she faced in the adult entertainment industry.

Jenny’s story is one of resilience and transformation. From a young age, she turned to drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism, but she made the courageous decision to leave her home country and start a new life in LA. However, she found herself in a difficult situation with an older husband and a job in the television industry. Despite facing heartbreaking experiences and being let down by the justice system, Jenny never lost her determination to break free from her past.

Through her journey of vulnerability and authenticity, Jenny found her path to recovery and personal growth. She obtained a degree in drug and alcohol studies and worked her way up in the treatment industry, becoming an advocate for recovery. Jenny now uses her Instagram platform to connect with individuals on their sobriety journey, providing inspiration and support.

Tune in to this emotional rollercoaster of an episode and be inspired by Jenny’s story of resilience and transformation.


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 (Jenny Leone)

Jenny Leone is an inspiring individual who has overcome tremendous challenges in her life. From childhood trauma to addiction and working in the adult entertainment industry, Jenny has faced it all. However, through her journey of vulnerability and authenticity, she has found her path to recovery and personal growth.

Growing up in a divided family, Jenny turned to drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism. She made the brave decision to leave her home country and start a new life in LA, only to find herself in a difficult situation with an older husband and a job in the television industry. Despite facing heartbreaking experiences and being let down by the justice system, Jenny never lost her determination to break free from her past.

Jenny’s journey of overcoming addiction, including struggles with eating disorders, pills, and alcohol, led her to seek help and find purpose in helping others. She obtained a degree in drug and alcohol studies and worked her way up in the treatment industry.

Today, Jenny is an advocate for recovery, using her Instagram platform (@jennys_sober_lifestyle_) to connect with individuals on their sobriety journey. Her long-term vision is to open a treatment center, JSL Recovery, to provide free services to those who can’t afford it.

Follow Jenny Leone on Instagram to be inspired by her story of resilience and transformation.


Show Notes

  • [03:07] Jenny shares her journey into social media work, starting with a podcast for a treatment center during COVID, and how it evolved into her own podcast, with the support of an investor, as she focuses on her mission of recovering out loud. 
  • [05:06] Jenny shares her belief in being vulnerable and authentic online, and how it has helped her find success. She also opens up about her dark past of childhood sexual abuse and how it led her to struggle with drugs and alcohol.
  • [07:49] Jenny shares her personal journey of growing up in a divided family, turning to drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism, and eventually leaving her home country at a young age to start a new life in LA, where she found herself in a challenging situation with a much older husband and a new job in the television industry. 
  • [12:10] Jenny shares her heartbreaking experience of being let down by the justice system and disowned by her family after bravely speaking out about her traumatic experience.
  • [14:17] Jenny shares her experience in the adult entertainment industry.
  • [22:13] Jenny shares her personal experiences of having her past exposed online and her encounter with sexual assault.
  • [24:26] Jenny shares about leaving the industry she was in, getting tattoos as a way to break free, the challenges she faced, and her determination to help others who want to leave that lifestyle behind. 
  • [27:30] Jenny shares her journey of overcoming addiction, including her struggles with eating disorders, pills, and alcohol, and how asking for help and finding purpose in helping others became her path to recovery and personal growth. 
  • [31:04] Gary shares his personal journey of addiction and recovery, and the turning point in his life when he decided to get sober and how it saved him.
  • [33:43] Jenny reflects about when she went to treatment, got a degree in drug and alcohol studies, and worked her way up in the treatment industry.
  • [36:18] Jenny shares her personal journey of self-discovery and growth, emphasizing the importance of committing fully to personal development and overcoming the victim mentality by forgiving oneself and others, ultimately becoming a survivor. 
  • [38:13] Gary emphasizes the importance of surrendering and doing the work on oneself. 
  • [40:29] Jenny emphasizes the importance of finding purpose and passion in life after getting sober, encouraging a “why not me” mentality and highlighting the transformative power of humility and meaningful work. 
  • [41:42] Gary emphasizes the importance of conveying the message that people struggling with addiction are not alone and can completely change their lives through treatment and self-work.
  • [46:00] Jenny discusses her personal belief in turning her pain and anger over to her higher power, finding solace and clarity by the ocean, and the importance of letting go and moving on without necessarily forgiving the person who caused the harm. 
  • [48:03] Jenny shares her experience of using Instagram to connect with genuine and vulnerable individuals, helping them on their sobriety journey.
  • [49:51] Jenny shares her long-term vision of opening a treatment center, JSL Recovery, to help people struggling with addiction, with the goal of eventually opening a nonprofit to provide free services to those who can’t afford it.

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.