Below Deck Med: Captain Sandy Yawn recalls words that helped her get sober

Captain Sandy Yawn on Below Deck Mediterranean.
Captain Sandy gets real about her sobriety. Pic credit: Bravo

Below Deck Mediterranean star Captain Sandy Yawn has reflected on the words that helped her get sober over 30 years ago.

The captain has been vocal regarding her struggles with alcohol and drugs ever since she became part of the hit-yachting show.

It was a challenging time for Captain Sandy, who’s grateful to be sober and living her best life with her girlfriend Leah Shafer.

Captain Sandy has admitted that stopping drinking or stopping smoking pot wasn’t the challenge, it was “staying stopped.”

This week, though, the captain shared a heartbreaking story about how she would be dead if it wasn’t for one brutal phrase.

Stopping by Addiction Talk, an online talk show hosted by American Addiction Centers, Captain Sandy recalled what made her get clean once and for all.

Captain Sandy Yawn recalls the words that helped her get sober

The Below Deck Med star shared just how bad her addiction was as she continuously tried and failed to stay sober. Captain Sandy even admitted that things got so bad people were giving up on her.

One person she spoke about was her former sponsor, who declared sponsoring Captain Sandy was hurting her.

“She goes, ‘Sandy, sponsoring you is hurting me. Because every time you go out, I worry about you.’ So she goes, ‘I can’t help you clearly,'” the captain expressed.

Despite how bad that felt, it wasn’t the defining moment for Captain Sandy. That came when she was at a halfway house, and the director said the words that changed her life.

“I remember walking into a halfway house. And the director looked at me, and she goes, ‘You’re not worth the paperwork. Every time you come in, I do all this paperwork, and you relapse,” Captain Sandy stated.

The word paperwork made something click psychologically in the captain. She would go back to the halfway house every day after that to prove to the director she was serious about staying sober.

Captain Sandy recalled the director letting her eat there and eventually allowing her to stay under one condition. Each week she had to turn over her paycheck to the director because the director knew a paycheck was the captain’s gateway to relapsing.

The captain lived there for six months, turning her life around one day at a time.

Below Deck Med star Captain Sandy’s life changed because of halfway house director

After hearing she wasn’t worth the paperwork, Captain Sandy began to go to meetings and find a sponsor that she wanted to be like and admire. At the time, she picked a person who was sober and drove a cool car.

That sponsor helped her work the steps, something that has kept Captain Sandy clean for decades. It wasn’t easy, but she has not drank alcohol or done drugs since then, and that was in 1998.

Along with sharing her own story Captain Sandy Yawn has also helped others stay sober. The Real Housewives of Orange County alum Braunwyn Windham-Burke credits the captain with helping her get clean.

Below Deck Mediterranean airs Mondays at 8/7c on Bravo with early access on Peacock.

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