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Alcoholism - there and back: A qualitiative analysis of interviews with clients engaging with a 12 Step based treatment prgramme. / Rebecca Louise Hancock

Swansea University Author: Rebecca Louise Hancock

Abstract

The contribution of treatment interventions and processes involved in facilitating recovery from addiction are still not entirely clear. In particular, 12 Step research data is notoriously difficult to obtain due to the anonymity of group members and self-selecting nature of the organisation. The pr...

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Published: 2007
Institution: Swansea University
Degree level: Master of Philosophy
Degree name: M.Phil
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa42688
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Abstract: The contribution of treatment interventions and processes involved in facilitating recovery from addiction are still not entirely clear. In particular, 12 Step research data is notoriously difficult to obtain due to the anonymity of group members and self-selecting nature of the organisation. The present study investigates the processes of recovery from addiction, via a Grounded Theory analysis of semi-structured interviews with fourteen participants, recruited from a 12 Step based treatment programme. Six major phases, or in Grounded Theory terms categories, emerged from the analysis. In chronological order, these are: the descent into addiction; realisation of the problem [a gradual process]; accessing treatment; the treatment process; spirituality; and recovery. It is suggested that the participants experienced a gradual descent into addiction. As the participants' drinking career developed further, cracks began to show and the telltale signs that appeared indicated a problem with alcohol. Participants appear to have journeyed through a gradual process of realisation of the problem. All participants described a turning point or significant event that prompted them to access treatment. The spiritual nature of the 12 Step programme was self-evident from the data. Finally, participants viewed their recovery as a life-long process, and although they acknowledged that the programme provided them with the tools to achieve and maintain sobriety; they recognised that it was ultimately their responsibility to put these tools into action. In light of the limited qualitative research on the subject, this study has provided a valuable insight into the processes of recovery via a 12 Step based treatment programme. Working through these process is important for sustaining abstinence and recovery. However, if we are to improve alcohol treatment and rehabilitation services and thus reduce the impact that alcohol use has on the individual's life plus their families/friends, and communities, we need to carry out such research on a larger scale.
Keywords: Clinical psychology.
College: Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences