starbucksHi. My name is Laurie Ruettimann. I was once addicted to Starbucks, but that’s all over now.

Before I left for Cuba, last November, a friend joked that I might die without Starbucks. I thought, hey, that’s a little extreme. Cubans have good coffee. I’ll be just fine.

Turns out, I did nearly die.

My morning drink at Starbucks is the equivalent of six cups of coffee. I quickly figured out that there was no way I could ingest that much caffeine and get on a bus in Havana. I was shit out of luck. Literally.

My overall coffee detox began on my second day in Cuba.

The headaches came, but the good news is that they went away pretty quickly. I came home to America after nine days and decided to extend my coffee hiatus. That went fine, but then I had to travel for work in America and quickly realized that most morning meetings revolve around coffee. I allowed myself two cups with cream and that’s it. Doesn’t matter the brand.

But my Starbucks days are over (minus drip coffee when I travel). No espressos, no mochas, no javas, no flat whites, no macchiatos, and certainly no frappucinos. It’s real coffee or nothing at all, and some days it’s nothing at all.

Can I keep this up?

Well, it’s now February. I thought Starbucks would send out a search party to look for me, but lazy parents are creating new brand loyalists on a daily basis. They don’t need me, and I don’t need them. Life without Starbucks is fantastic. I can fall asleep faster at night. The first four hours of my day are no longer an accelerated, non-stop race to lunch. And I’m not randomly yelling at people unless they deserve it.

Well, that last one is debatable.

It’s possible to quit Starbucks, diet soda, social media or cigarettes and not die. In fact, I want to recognize the difference between needing something and wanting something in life. If I need you, my dear Starbucks, I shouldn’t have you. Nothing should have that much power over my life and my pocketbook.


  1. Wow – so just curious what was your former “normal” drink at Starbucks that was equivalent to 6 cups of coffee?!! I have a pleasant relationship with Starbucks that simply consists of stopping there on my one morning when I head to the office (Mondays. Work at home the rest of the week). I’m not “addicted” to Starbucks but do enjoy my weekly treat (Flat White my favorite)! Enjoy your detox/flush wallet! 🙂

  2. I was just reading about giving up coffee yesterday as I think I drink too much. After reading your post, I realise I don’t drink too much coffee! Yey! I am validated!

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