Empowering Your Sober Self: The LifeRing Approach to Addiction Recovery
This chapter describes stigma women perceive as drug addicts and the strategies used to confront that stigma once they become members of a mutual support group, Narcotics Anonymous (NA). Stigma is associated with being a drug addict and even more pronounced for the female drug addict. Public policy and media continue to focus on womens reproductive roles, igniting the stigmata associated with being female and addicted. It explains a sample of women in NA that represents a highly stigmatized group by race and class and uncovers the extent to which women perceive stigma both in their active addiction and once in recovery. Three groups in particular Women for Sobriety (WFS), women-only meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), and women-only meetings of NA offer a recovery venue that acknowledges the role of stigma in addiction. Women seeking recovery from addiction bring with them feelings of guilt and shame that arise, in large part, from the stigma associated with over consumption of substances.