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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 131-139

Lived experiences of the wives of alcohol use disorder partners: A phenomenology study

1 Department of Gastroenterology Nursing, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 Principal, College of Nursing, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Mini George
Principal, College of Nursing, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/iopn.iopn_84_21

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Introduction: Alcoholism, a “family disease,” is on the rise in India. Individuals who abuse alcohol affect themselves and family, especially their spouses. This study explored the lived experiences of wives of alcohol use disorder (AUD) partners within the context of phenomenology. This was essential to understand their life as they experienced it, from their perspective and the coping resources adopted by them. Materials and Methods: Interpretive phenomenology was used with a purposive sampling of wives of AUD partners attending the de-addiction clinic. After explaining the study and written consent, in-depth interviews were conducted with 11 participants, which led to data saturation. Results: Data were explicated by thematic analysis. Significant statements and meaning units were identified, and codes were assigned. Three categories namely impact on self, effect on life, and coping strategies were emerged. Two major themes namely “faced innumerable challenges and used adaptive and maladaptive coping” were generated. Conclusion: Wives faced innumerable problems of poor health, physical misery, social relations, emotional disturbances, marital discord, and financial burden. In terms of coping, most wives relied on either avoidance or tolerance which was not productive for them or their partners. The wives covered up partners' alcohol dependence, took on their responsibilities, withdrew or distanced themselves from friends and family. Many of them put on a brave front and continued to live with the constant stress.

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