[DIAL AN EXPERT] EP#482 – Privilege, Race, and Addiction with Laura Cathcart Robbins

Mar 12, 2023

After a secret, six-year love affair with prescription drugs and alcohol, Laura Cathcart Robbins begrudgingly checked herself in rehab. She knew that if she had any hope of a future and any hope of parenting her precious children, she needed to get some help. And, fast. And the timing couldn’t have been worse. She was in the beginning stages of what could potentially be a horribly contentious divorce and had just signed on to a prestigious community position. In the space of a short ten months, Laura had ended a very high-profile marriage, went to rehab, got sober and fell in love. 

This week on the show, I chat with Laura about the chronology of her addiction, including a brief stint with freebasing cocaine, hiding pills and booze in a vault of shoe boxes, and terror she felt when she realized that her maternal instinct to caretake for her children, THE driving force in her life, was now superseded by the drive to get high. The strongest pull she had ever known was now dethroned by the urge to use. 

In this candid and unabashed interview, Laura shares her elitism around her addiction and how that kept her from getting the help she needed, her defense tactic of stonewalling others, and how she healed herself from taking ten Ambien daily… washed down with a few shots of Vodka. We discuss how her perspective on intimacy and vulnerability has changed in her relationships now that she’s in recovery, the role race and privilege played in her addiction, and the first step you should take if you are concerned about your substance use.

This pod explores:

  • Understanding the difference between privacy and secrecy and how addiction thrives in secrecy
  • How Laura defines addiction and how it shows up in our work, fitness, and relationships
  • How Laura opened up to vulnerability and what her first step was (spoiler: you can do it to)
  • Exploring the lack of Black and Brown voices the recovery space and how Laura is shifting that paradigm




I have three battle-tested (and badass) keynote speeches that are ready to be delivered to your company, organization, group, or association. If you or anyone you know could benefit from me droppin’ some gems (um, like, who couldn’t use some new tools?) please send them to THIS FANCY INFO PAGE on my site where you/they can message me directly about specific needs.



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Laura Cathcart Robbins is the host of the popular podcast, The Only One In The Room, and author of the forthcoming Atria/Simon & Schuster memoir, STASH (March 7, 2023). She has been active for many years as a speaker and school trustee and is credited for creating The Buckley School’s nationally recognized committee on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice. Her recent articles in Huffpo and The Temper on the subjects of race, recovery, and divorce have garnered her worldwide acclaim. She is a 2022 TEDx Speaker and LA Moth StorySlam winner. Currently, she sits on the advisory boards of the San Diego Writer’s Festival and the Outliers HQ podcast Festival.

Connect with Laura on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.


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I'm a sassy-ass life coach and hypnotherapist who specializes in all things self-worth and confidence. I help aspiring badasses (hint: that's YOU!) speak up for themselves without being assholes. As in... telling your mom to stop butting into your relationship. You feel me, no?

It's time to let go of all that people-pleasing and cultivate some serious "enoughness". You're home, love. You're home.


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