Narratives of Opioids Users in Addiction Recovery Resources : A Preliminary Analysis.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 11:30
Oral Presentation
Julien THIBAULT LÉVESQUE, University of Ottawa, Canada
The objective of this communication is to explore how the navigation of addiction services, through their own specific logics, practices and interactions, contributes to modulate the biographies of the services users and, ultimately, shapes their recovery trajectories. Based on interactionist theories, we postulate that contrasting conceptions of addiction traversing the many approaches in the substance abuse field carry differing views on identity. In this sense, in order to answer our research question, we conducted participant observation and semi-directive interviews (in process) with opioids users. Observations of the interactions between workers and users (roles, tasks, biographical demands) were made in three different addiction services, each with its specific intervention approach, etiology of addiction and definition of relapse. Interviewees were also recruited from the same community organizations. Data was then submitted to a paradigmatic analysis of narratives. A twofold comparison was made between the accounts of newer and older services users, and between users of different resources in order to explore the changes in the language used by the services users and to better understand the biographical demands of the various approaches. This strategy also allowed us to explore the biographical strategies used by recovering opioids users and the challenges of navigating different approaches to addiction management. The analysis showed how knowledge and practices modulate subjectivities and how resource users must juggle between subjugation and resistance to the multiple demands for biographical reconstruction. Through the integration of a new vocabulary, users of the different services learned to re-evaluate their conducts and to reframe their life story via a lens specific to the approach. In this sense, biographies were shaped during treatment episodes and could be seen as central to the actions taken in recovery. Therefore, it becomes important to explore the narratives of the services users and their effects on recovery.