Profiles in Recovery

Tori McGough

McGough runs a popular Wyoming dude ranch that borders the majestic Grand Teton mountains. As a woman in long-term recovery, she sees beauty in the world around her – but especially in herself.

“I don’t ever want to not love myself again, so I do the work of recovery every day,” McGough says. She overcame a 25-year alcohol addiction with intensive outpatient treatment and the support of a 12-step program. Now six years sober, McGough often chairs an AA meeting while balancing life as a business owner, wife and mother to three children.

“If I stay in the moment, I find that each second is purposeful and has meaning,” says McGough, recipient of a 2017 Wyoming Women of Influence award for being an inspiration to others in her state.

Day Job:
Dude ranch general manager/mom

What I lost to addiction:
I lost my worthiness and self-esteem

At my worst, I was:
Drinking before work and parent-teacher conferences

What worked for me:
Intense outpatient therapy and continued AA meetings

Advice to my younger self:
Learn coping skills for life that don’t include substances

Rules I live by:
Be willing, be honest, be your own best friend

On my bucket list:
Finish college and seek a degree in social services

Favorite recovery quote:
One day at a time

My rock bottom moment:
Throwing up in the morning and chasing it with a beer

When cravings come:
Play the tape all the way through

On my schedule today:
Chair an AA meeting; show up for my three kids

Best advice for newbies:
Be honest and go to meetings

What I value most in recovery:
I like myself today

Stigma I faced:
I faced the stigma that my drinking was weak and that I lacked willpower

What I learned about myself:
I like to learn about how to be a better person every day

How I get through the holidays:
I drive and I get soda water immediately so I don’t have people offering me a drink all night

I get inspired by:
Genuine living

What saves me from myself:
Being of service to others

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If you’re a person in long-term recovery who wants to share your insights, please contact us at [email protected].