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The Self-Perception of Women Who Live With an Alcoholic Partner: Dialoging With Deviance, Strength, and Self-Fulfillment*

Authors


  • *

    We wish to thank the women whose life stories form the substance from which this article was created for their willingness to support us in this project.

**Einat Peled is a senior lecturer in The Bob Shapell School of Social Work at the Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel (einatp@post.tau.ac.il).

Ilana Sacks is a junior teacher in The Bob Shapell School of Social Work at the Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel (sacksila@post.tau.ac.il).

Abstract

Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to learn about the self-perception of women who live with alcohol-addicted partners. It was hoped that avoiding to label the women in advance as codependent would facilitate a better understanding of their lives and self-perceptions. The qualitative naturalist methodology used was based on a feminist framework. In-depth interviews with 10 women living with alcoholic partners were conducted and analyzed. The findings revealed 3 central dialogues around which the women’s self-perceptions evolved—with deviance, with strength, and with self-fulfillment. Findings are discussed relative to the ongoing discourse between the codependency approach and other social, psychological, and gender conceptions in this domain. Clinical implications and directions for future research are offered.

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