CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A woman is working to get back on her feet after struggling with alcoholism for more than 20 years.
What You Need To Know
- Montiece McCade struggled with alcoholism for more than 20 years
- Her addiction continued through the first months of the pandemic, a time when alcohol consumption went up in the U.S.
- McCade turned over a new leaf with the help of Charlotte Rescue Mission
Montiece McCade turned over a new leaf after being part of an addiction recovery program at the Charlotte Rescue Mission.
She graduated from the 120-residential recovery program for women, Dove’s Nest, earlier this year. It provided her counseling, support, educational and professional advancement opportunities at no cost.
“They didn’t pat me on the back and say, ‘It’s going to be OK.’ They taught me how to make it OK,” McCade said.
When McCade was baptized on Easter Sunday, she also renewed her faith and made a promise to do the best she could to serve God.
“I don’t have material success but I have spiritual success, and that’s more fulfilling than anything,” McCade said.
McCade shared about her life before she joined Dove’s Nest late last year. She recalls more than 20 years ago, she started drinking after finding out her husband had an affair.
“I drank to deal with the pain. You feel rejection, you feel unwanted, unloved, ugly,” McCade said.
McCade had periods of sobriety but she drank off and on after her divorce.
“I loved him. I didn’t know how to let go, so I drank,” McCade said.
The 67 year old said at the beginning of the pandemic she continued drinking.
“Loneliness is a very bad thing. That’s my trigger, being alone,” McCade said.
It turns out she wasn’t the only one struggling with alcohol consumption. According to an RTI International Study, between February and November of 2020, people exceeding drinking guidelines went up 39% in the U.S.
Alcohol consumption increased among women. Black and Hispanic women and Black men and women with children under the age of 5 had the largest increases in consumption.
McCade made the decision to turn her life around last year, making a promise to stop drinking for good.
“I’m so glad. I’m so proud. I really am,” McCade said.
After graduating from Dove’s Nest, she joined the Life Skills Program at Community Matters Café, an extension of Charlotte Rescue Mission.
While doing the program, CRM provides her with housing at Hope Haven.
It allows her to navigate her new lifestyle before she is ready to be back on her own.
Community Matters Café Brand Manager Paula Elkins said 75% of their staff at the restaurant is made up of students in the Life Skills Program.
“They learn to be accountable. They learn to hone in on daily disciplines like showing up to work on time, taking pride in what you do, being accountable for their word and just making that new transition back into community,” Elkins said.
McCade is grateful for the support before she’s ready to be on her own.
“Connecting with these people has given me the chance to be myself again,” McCade said.