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Laura Cathcart Robbins: Motherhood, Ambien Addiction, and Recovery

Did you know that 1 in 10 women relies on sleep aids regularly? It's a staggering statistic, but it's hardly surprising. In today's fast-paced world, where we juggle demanding careers, relationships, never-ending to-do lists, hormonal shifts, and mental health challenges, even a mere six hours of sleep can seem like an unattainable dream. What might surprise you, however, is the potential danger hidden within those seemingly harmless sleeping pills.

Today, I have the privilege of being joined by a remarkable guest on the podcast—a TEDex Speaker, the accomplished author of Stash: My Life in Hiding, and a fellow podcaster, Laura Cathcart Robbins. Laura's memoir takes us on a riveting journey through addiction and recovery. She opens up about her struggles, how she navigated a high-profile Hollywood marriage and divorce, all while facing the challenges of parenting in a world marked by privilege and racism.

Laura generously shares her perspective on the multiple rock-bottom moments that defined her journey and her experience as the only person of color in most of her recovery circles.

I was also eager to delve into what drove Laura to write this memoir, which reveals both the painful and hopeful moments along her path to reclaiming her life. She sheds light on the raw details of her writing journey, including facing rejection letters from sixteen publishers and completing her first draft in a mere six months. (Whaaaat?)

We talk about: 

  • Why Laura felt compelled to turn to Ambien as a coping mechanism for life's pressures
  • The pivotal moment when Laura realized her kids had taken a back seat to her struggle
  • The disparities in Laura and her divorce attorney's definitions of "success"
  • The importance of creating more inclusive spaces for people of color in recovery circles
  • How Laura meticulously curated her memoir, deciding what to include and what to leave out 


To learn more about Laura Cathcart Robbins and her work, be sure to visit her website at, where you can grab her memoir: Stash: My Life in Hiding and check out her podcast The Only One in the Room.  You can also follow her on Instagram @lauracathcartrobbins.


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