Making Lesbians Visible in the Substance Use Field

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Psychology Press, 2005 - Self-Help - 120 pages
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Get a better understanding of how--and why--lesbians fall victim to substance abuse

Making Lesbians Visible in the Substance Use Field marks an important step in the creation of an environment to heal the hurt of invisibility felt by lesbian substance users. This unique book works to develop an understanding of the complex relationship between sexual orientation and substance use by challenging the traditional stereotypes about the behavior, identity, and culture of sexual minority women. Contributors draw on ethnographic work, grounded theory, and personal accounts to present quantitative and qualitative data on depression, race/ethnicity, social identity, self-esteem, recovery, addiction counselors and treatment programs, and HIV risk and infection.

Through a wide range of approaches and a variety of perspectives, Making Lesbians Visible in the Substance Use Field examines empirical/post-positive, interpretive, and critical social research paradigms to help provide a better understanding of the misjudged and misunderstood women who have lived in society's shadows. This book transforms obsolete ideas, beliefs, and practices, offering a "lesbian perspective" that's been missing from the field of substance abuse.

Making Lesbians Visible in the Substance Use Field examines:
  • the importance of self-acceptance in recovery
  • the link between depression and alcohol use disorders
  • substance abuse patterns in different sexual orientation categories of women
  • findings of the Chicago Health and Life Experience's of Women Study (CHLEW), conducted in 2000-01
  • how age, race, ethnicity, and historical content influence alcohol use by lesbians
  • how high self-esteem and a positive social identity can affect alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use in the lesbian community
  • the need for treatment programs designed for lesbians to the various causes of substance use
  • what lesbians really want from treatment for alcoholism
  • the importance of hiring openly LGB addiction counselors
  • why manifold marginalization is the most probable justification for heightened HIV risk among lesbians
Making Lesbians Visible in the Substance Use Field presents a "lesbian sensitive" perspective to addiction counselors and therapists, community nurses, healthcare workers at treatment and rehabilitation centers, and graduate and undergraduate students in the psychology, sociology, and nursing fields.


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in the Substance Use Field
Contemporary Womens Issues 1998
The CoOccurrence of Depression and Alcohol Dependence
Alcohol Consumption AlcoholRelated Problems and Other
Alcohol Use and AlcoholRelated Problems in SelfIdentified
Substance Use and Social Identity in the Lesbian Community
Lesbian Information Service

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About the author (2005)

Elizabeth Ettorre is Professor of Sociology at Liverpool University, UK.She has taught and researched in the USA, Finland and the UK and holds honorary appointments at the universities of Exeter, Helsinki, Abo Academy University and the Institute of Scientific Analysis. Her research interests include women's studies, substance use, health and illness, and ethics.

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