Drunk Mom

Drunk Mom

A Memoir

Book - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Penguin Putnam
An intense, complex and disturbing story, bravely and beautifully told.  I read Drunk Mom with my jaw on the floor, which doesn’t happen to me that often." - Lena Dunham

Three years after giving up drinking, Jowita Bydlowska found herself throwing back a glass of champagne like it was ginger ale. It was a special occasion: a party celebrating the birth of her first child. It also marked Bydlowska's immediate, full-blown return to crippling alcoholism.

In the gritty and sometimes grimly comic tradition of the bestselling memoirs Lit by Mary Karr and Smashed by Koren Zailckas, Drunk Mom is Bydlowska's account of the ways substance abuse took control of her life- the binges and blackouts, the humiliations, the extraordinary risk-taking- as well as her fight toward recovery as a young mother. This courageous memoir brilliantly shines a light on the twisted logic of an addicted mind and the powerful, transformative love of one's child. Ultimately it gives hope, especially to those struggling in the same way.

Publisher: New York, New York : Penguin Books, 2014
ISBN: 9780143126508
Branch Call Number: 362.29209 B991d 2014
Characteristics: 308 pages ; 20 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Jan 02, 2014

What an awful book. Maybe it could be helpful for other women in her situation, but I just felt like a voyeur after reading it, and I skipped whole chapters. I didn't think she was honest with herself, even in the end.

Jun 23, 2013

A bit like watching a train wreck. It is dark and sometimes overwhelming but very very interesting.

ksoles May 24, 2013

Confessional autobiographies, epiphanic tales and addiction memoirs have proliferated bookstore shelves in recent years. However, Polish-born Torontonian Jowita Bydlowska’s account of her relapse into alcoholism stands out because, at the time, she also acted as primary caregiver for her infant son. Her failure to care for a helpless child makes her rapid decline all the more tragic and horrific; the stress placed on her relationship with her boyfriend seems marginal by comparison.

The strength of "Drunk Mom" lies in the power of Bydlowska's story, told retrospectively through sobriety’s hindsight using painfully direct language. The author does stretch her metaphor of mother as failed monarch to the breaking point, though, and the monotony of buying, hiding, drinking, and disposing of bottles weakens the book's momentum.

The book with resonate most with those touched by addiction but, to all readers, it searingly shows how self-delusion and self-destructive behaviour ruin lives.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at PCPL

To Top