Application and Extension of the Alcohol Recovery Narratives Conceptual Framework

Mohsan Subhani, Usman Talat, Holly Knight, Joanne R. Morling, Katy A Jones, Aithal Guruprasad, Stephen D Ryder, Stefan Rennick-Egglestone

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Recovery narratives are personal stories of health problems and recovery. A systematic review proposed a conceptual framework characterising alcohol misuse recovery narratives, consisting of eight principal dimensions, each with types and subtypes. The current study aims to apply and extend this preliminary conceptual framework. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to collect alcohol misuse recovery narratives from adult participants. A two-stage inductive and deductive thematic analysis approach was used to assess the relevance of the dimensions and types included in the preliminary conceptual framework and identify new components. The sample consisted of 11 participants from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds who had previously displayed varying degrees of alcohol misuse. All conceptual framework dimensions (genre, identity, recovery setting, drinking trajectories, drinking behaviours and traits, stages, spirituality and religion, and recovery experience) were present in the collected narratives. Three dimensions were extended by adding types and subtypes. Whilst the existing conceptual framework fitted the collected narratives, a new dimension describing the alcohol environment was required to fully characterise narratives. Types included in the alcohol environment dimension were policy and practice and social dynamics. The extended framework could guide the production of resources enabling clinicians to engage with narratives shared by their clients.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1203-1217
Number of pages15
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number13
Early online date8 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2023


  • alcohol misuse
  • conceptual framework
  • narrative inquiry
  • narrative interviews
  • recovery narrative
  • recovery story
  • validation


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