Nude blogger, Jessa O’Brien, has spoken out about her past battle with alcohol – which saw the 28-year-old consume a ‘bottle of tequila to myself as pre-drinks’ – before she finally became fully sober.
The Gold Coast-based Instagram star and body positive ambassador took to her Instagram page to celebrate being ‘sober’ for ‘almost two years’ this week.
Here, Jessa speaks to FEMAIL about her ‘binge drinking problem’, and how she got over it.
She also shares her tips for those wanting to embrace soberness for themselves.
In her latest post, the 28-year-old touched on the fact that, while she wasn’t a ‘raging alcoholic’, ‘like many of us, I loved a good drink… possibly in a little more excess than many others around me’.
Jessa then emphasized to FEMAIL that it was ‘definitely a binge drinking problem’:
‘A bottle of tequila to myself as pre-drinks at time. Drinking it from the bottle while others had a beer or wine,’ she explained.
‘Bacardi 151 was my spirit of choice for a long time, because it was 77 per cent alcohol. I was always into the stuff that intoxicated.
‘I was that person with a crazy tolerance for alcohol that meant people didn’t want to drink with me – because I could always manage more.
‘I would never drink anything mixed. A 750ml bottle of tequila sipped and then shots while out dancing. I wasn’t drinking every day, mainly each weekend.
‘But I’d wake up on Sundays in a hungover fog and need another few drinks to level myself out.’
Jessa explained that there came a moment when she realised she’d had enough – and accidentally it arrived after she finished seven months of backpacking:
‘As cliched as it sounds, I had this hugely spiritual experience – this life-changing journey of self discovery,’ she said.
‘Then, when I got home I was a changed person – I felt awkward going to social events with people who expected me to be drinking lots.
‘While I’ve had some of my most memorable moments while drunk and created so many fond memories that I will forever treasure, the relationship had become toxic.
‘Vomiting was a weekend norm. Bad decisions. Blackouts.’
And so, she decided to change. Determining that her ‘connections would come from a depth of authenticity rather than a blurry haze’, and deciding her ‘social life would revolve around something more than alcohol’, Jessa gave alcohol up ‘cold turkey’ in 2016 – and hasn’t looked back since.
‘Since giving it up, I have realised just how engrained it is in our culture,’ she said. ‘Just how addictive the thought of a drink is. Just how low-vibrational it can be.’
Speaking to FEMAIL, Jessa admitted that while it has been a ‘struggle’ at times, she has discovered ‘alternative ways to socialise’:
‘At the beginning it was difficult because I’d always been a party girl and I no longer had the patience to drink water while others drank alcohol,’ she said.
‘But soon I found a way to socialise with others that didn’t come through booze – long coastal walks, yoga, going for a juice or a coffee.’
And Jessa added that her life has become so much better and so much stronger now that she is sober:
‘As well as being hugely empowering, it’s also given me so much clarity,’ she explained.
‘These days, seven days a week I feel good – never hungover. I’m so much more productive in the week and have such a clearer head.’
The blogger lastly shared her tips for others who are trying to get on the path of sobriety themselves:
‘Organise things you’d normally do by yourself with friends,’ she said.
‘Whether that’s a yoga class or a walk.’
Jessa also said that, on the whole, she now avoids meeting friends who are all drinking – because she finds ‘sitting there with water boring’.
‘Your social circle may change a little, but those who matter will stick around,’ she said – citing that there are all sorts of mindful drinking or abstinence events popping up these days.
Jessa O’Brien shot to fame last year after her Instagram page, The Nude Blogger, was ‘deactivated without warning’.
The 28-year-old, from the launched her ‘body-positive’ page in October 2016, and swiftly amassed 42,000 followers.
However, Jessa found herself quickly back at zero followers after she said she thought the profile had been removed because it breached Instagram’s nudity policy.
‘Nearly 10 months in, almost 43,000 followers later, and a hell of a lot of time, energy and effort… and they do this… Not one notification,’ Jessa posted at the time.
‘Well, not good enough. I wasn’t even given the opportunity to rectify or negotiate the matter before they shut the account down.’
Jessa later had her profile re-instated, which the blogger defined as a ‘HUGE win for body positivity’ – and she has since gone on to accrue more than 75,000 followers.
These days, she has become an outspoken body positive ambassador, sharing her message both on her Instagram profile and her blog.
Recently, Jessa spoke about the ‘body shaming double standards’ that exist:
‘You do not have to be fat to be a victim of body shaming,’ Jessa wrote in a post on her blog about the difficulties of being body positive and skinny.
‘It is also experienced at the other end of the spectrum, although this aspect tends to fly under the radar a little more,’ she added.