Ashley McBryde Quit Drinking Over a Year Ago: ‘It Was Just Really Detrimental’

Ashley McBryde might have songs about drinking, but she is now proudly sober. The Arkansas native quit drinking more than a year ago, but chose not to talk about it until she knew sobriety was something she could fully embrace.

“I didn’t really want to talk to anybody about it even lightly until a year had passed because I was like, ‘What if I screw it up?'” McBryde said on Apple Music Country’s Today’s Country Radio with Kelleigh Bannen.

But now that McBryde has been sober for more than 450 days, she is opening up about her excessive drinking, and why she knew she needed to stop.

“Turns out it was just really detrimental,” McBryde acknowledged. “And then when you’re finding out the reasons that you’re going so overboard all the time was because of your inability to feel something that your brain was like, ‘I can’t do it. I can’t do it.’ I’m like, ‘Well, that’s weak. I’m not going to accept that. I’d rather just hurt.’ This morning I was at the boxing gym working out with my coach. We were doing something that was hard, and he said, ‘Are you okay? Do you need a break?’ And I said, ‘I know how to hurt.’

“I do now,” she added. “I mean, I knew how to hurt before and add extra to it for no reason. And now, when I’m uncomfortable, I say out loud, ‘I know how to be uncomfortable.'”

Now that she is no longer placating her emotions with alcohol, the “Light On In The Kitchen” singer can openly experience all of her feelings, even the really hard ones.

“I don’t have to go hide because I’m not a weenie,” McBryde boasted. “When I was like, ‘You have no idea how much I can drink. I can drink you under the table,’ what an awful thing to admit. You are so weak that you have to drink an entire bottle of anything instead of just feel what you feel.”

McBryde just released  her latest album, The Devil I Know, which includes a song called “Blackout Betty.” The Grand Ole Opry member wrote the song before she quit drinking, although the lyrics give an indication of the internal battle McBryde was facing.

“There’s even a line in ‘Blackout Betty’ that says, ‘Why can’t I have just one glass of wine? Hey, I’m a real piece of sh– sometimes,'” McBryde shared. “And at the time, I was. Pretty often. But you’ll hear it in context and you’ll be like, ‘Yeah, it’s kind of said in a jabbing you in the ribs kind of way’… And I know that my therapist would be like, ‘We’re not going to say that I’m a piece of sh– sometimes. We can say I’m messy, we can say I’m complicated.’ But at the time, it was absolute truth. I mean, I wrote the song hungover.”

McBryde will embark on her headlining The Devil I Know Tour, which kicks off on October 7 in Mobile, Alabama. Find all of McBryde’s music and tour dates at