#203 – Episode 203 – The Sober Curator with Alysse Bryson


Alysse Bryson is started the sober curator during lockdown. She wanted to create a fun uplifting space for people in long-term recovery. In this conversation, she candidly discusses becoming a single mom at twenty.

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about this episode

“I’m trying to show people that a sober lifestyle can be wildly rewarding and fun.” – Alysse Bryson

Like many of us, Alysse was on the hunt for fun and interesting content at the height of lockdowns and pandemic restrictions. As a person in long-term recovery with an expansive media background, she was specifically looking for a resource to direct her to great recovery content and merchandise.

She couldn’t find anything that spoke to her, so she created it herself. Along with a friend and her sister, Alysse started The Sober Curator as the ultimate resource hub for people in recovery.

I absolutely love the vibe of The Sober Curator; it has serious content, but it’s also quite fun. From the latest TV shows that have addiction and mental illness as an underlining storyline to must-listen podcasts, The Sober Curator aims to share all the options so you can find the right content for you.


About Alysse Bryson

Alysse Bryson is a strong woman in recovery, an innovative media maven, marketing guru, and gal about town. This sober gal has a humorous outlook on life combined with a fierce determination to succeed.

Alysse was the Publisher of Seattle Met magazine, Seattle’s largest lifestyle publication in her past life, Seattle’s largest lifestyle publication at the time. She lived the magazine lifestyle for nearly a decade. What’s she up to now? Currently, Alysse serves as the Director of Business Development for KING 5 Media Group, part of TEGNA. Her second title around the office is “Director of Fun.”

Alysse is a very active advocate for recovery. She’s been on the board for the Recovery Cafe and the Friends of the Recovery Cafe Network for over six years. Alysse also volunteers with the King County Recovery Coalition and the Washington Recovery Alliance.

key highlights

Wherever you go, there you are

Growing up in a Christian household and attending a Christian private school, Alysse was shocked when she entered the public school system in high school. There were so many things happening that she had never experienced, but one thing that stood out to her was that the cool kids were the party kids.

Desperately wanting to be one of them, she started drinking around age 16, and although she didn’t understand what was happening, she knew right away that she was drinking differently from her friends. After becoming a single mother at 20, Alysse spent most of her twenties compartmentalizing her substance and alcohol use.

Thinking that moving somewhere new would make everything better, Alysse moved from her small town to Seattle at around the age of 30. From the outside looking in, she seemed like she was doing okay in life but internally, she knew she was on the brink of losing it all. After a series of unfortunate events, she hit a breaking point and realized something had to change.

Through therapy and an intensive outpatient program, everything changed for the better for Alysse. Now, she’s just over 16 years sober and describes her life as wildly rewarding, fun, crazy, and unpredictable.

“If you told 30-day sober Alysse that your life would look like this, I wouldn’t have believed it. I wouldnt have dreamed big enough for myself.” – Alysse Bryson

Consistency & community

“If you do a few simple things consistently, you can transform your life.” – Veronica Valli

This is something I talk a lot about in my coaching groups. Consistency is the secret sauce to superpower your recovery.

When we’re talking about doing the work for sustainable sobriety, it’s not about doing it perfectly. We do it messily but consistently, and it’s in the mess that we find growth.

In recovery, life still comes at you hard. For Alysse, she’s had to deal with cancer, her son being diagnosed with a lifelong disease, losing loved ones, and more. She credits two major things for getting her through those difficult times: she’s consistently focused on her sobriety, and she has a network of people that support her personally and professionally.

Remember, you don’t need to do this by yourself. Community makes a massive difference, especially when faced with tough times. So many support options are available to you from people who understand where you are.

Single parenting while getting sober

“It took me a really long time to get my priorities right.” – Alysse Bryson

Alysse’s son was nine years old when she got sober. Before that, she shielded him somewhat by being absent – things like dropping him off with the grandparents so she could party all weekend.

In recovery, things didn’t become perfect overnight. Alysse became a full-blown workaholic and was glued to her phone even in the important moments when her son needed her to be present for him.

The relationship didn’t change until she prioritized learning to be present and what it meant to really show up for someone.

The bottom line is it’s a lot of trial and error. Parenting is hard, and single parenting is even harder. For Alysse, it took a long time for her to show up differently for her son and to get to the good place they are now. It’s something she’s always working on and improving.

Social media & sobriety

When I got sober, social media, podcasts, and the rest weren’t around.

The beautiful thing about the sober online space is that the more people there are recovering out loud, the more we break down the stigma. With everything from free support groups to social media accounts showing what sobriety can be like and communities like Soberful, more options are available for people struggling with addiction. Hopefully, more people will get the help they need, and more lives will be saved.

That said, there are so many people without qualifications who are doing more harm than good. As Alysse says, there’s a difference between being a person in recovery and performing recovery. Sustainable sobriety is not about knowing the right buzzwords and being able to do Dry January. It’s about doing the deeper work to heal the root causes of our drinking. That’s how you get real results.

Be discerning with what you consume and the people you turn to in your recovery. Check people out, listen to their content and find out about their qualifications. It matters.

resources mentioned

Connect with Alysse Bryson


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