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Older women’s experiences, identities and coping strategies for dealing with a problem-drinking male family member
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Social Research on Alcohol and Drugs (SoRAD).
2017 (English)In: Drugs: education prevention and policy, ISSN 0968-7637, E-ISSN 1465-3370, Vol. 24, no 5, 409-417 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aims: In this study, we highlight the identities and actions of women with a problem-drinking relative by analysing autobiographies of women born between the 1920s and the 1950s. We ask how women describe their relationship and the problems arising because of a significant other’s drinking and how they cope with these problems. Methods: In the analysis, we pay attention to the power dynamics between family members. We, first, trace what kind of positions or identities the protagonists take in relation to the drinker. Second, we examine what kinds of harms and emotional reactions significant other’s drinking causes. Third, we consider how writers identify or take distance from events described in the autobiographies. Findings: Our analysis reveals four main identities and coping strategies: the positions of victim, helper, boundary setter and fighter. The victim and helper positions often entail women’s weakness and oppressed role, while the positions of boundary setter and fighter express women’s own power and reflexivity in action. Conclusions: Knowledge of the identities and coping strategies is important for understanding the power aspects of a relationship and developing appropriate support for women suffering from family member’s drinking.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 24, no 5, 409-417 p.
Keyword [en]
Coping, wives of alcoholics, drinking problems, autobiographies, qualitative research, identity
National Category
Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-141926DOI: 10.1080/09687637.2016.1184622ISI: 000406387000006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-141926DiVA: diva2:1089789
Projects
Drinking, Gender Differences and Social Change. The Gendered Dynamics of Swedish Drinking Situations from a Comparative Perspective (project no. 20140167, funded by FORTE, Sweden)
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2014-00167
Available from: 2017-04-20 Created: 2017-04-20 Last updated: 2017-08-21Bibliographically approved

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Törrönen, Jukka
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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf