A Family Affair: Latinas' Narratives of Substance Use and Recovery

Cecilia Ayón, Bonnie E. Carlson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Scopus citations


    The purpose of this study was to explore factors that influence Latinas' drug use and recovery process. Fourteen Latinas participated in in-depth interviews. Findings reveal that their families were at the heart of their stories, playing exacerbating or protective roles. Latinas whose family had a history of substance use encountered more challenges in their recovery process, as they had to break ties from unsupportive family members and had less support available, and were more likely to internalize negative stereotypes of Latinos as drug users. Latinas with no familial history of use received tremendous support (i.e., emotional, instrumental, and family members involved in treatment) from their family. They tended to challenge negative stereotypes of Latinos as drug users. Recommendations for improving services for this population include using peer mentoring groups, culturally grounded activities and interventions, and identifying supportive family and networks members to facilitate the recovery process.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)55-77
    Number of pages23
    JournalJournal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 2014


    • Latinas
    • internalized oppression
    • stereotypes
    • substance use and treatment

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Health(social science)
    • Education


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