• A qualitative study of counsellors’ personal experiences of alcoholism

      Mintz, Rita; Roberts, Tracey (University of Chester, 2011-11)
      This dissertation aimed to provide an understanding of the impact of alcoholism and how it has affected counsellors who are in recovery from alcoholism. The research also focused on how the participants’ lives are different today, being in recovery. This small scale qualitative phenomenological research study was undertaken using six semi-structured face to face interviews. Counsellors were asked about their experiences of alcoholism and recovery and what impact their experiences may have had on their decision to train as counsellors. The sample included three females and three males who had a minimum of five years of sobriety. Data were analysed using the constant comparative method. The findings from this research indicated a number of factors that contributed to the development of alcohol dependency, including a family history of alcoholism. The outcomes also highlighted the debilitating psychological, physical and social impact of alcoholism. The process of recovery, often preceded by a ‘spiritual awakening,’ reflected the joy of being in recovery and how participants’ lives are different today. Participants predominantly had a positive outlook on life. The findings of this research help to confirm that being in recovery from alcoholism had a major impact on the decision to become a counsellor and also was perceived as having a positive impact on the counsellors’ practice.