, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 299-309

An analysis of 12-step programs for substance abusers from a developmental perspective

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Twelve-step programs are increasingly recognized as important resources and treatment adjuncts for recovering alcohol and other drug abusers. It is therefore important that social workers and other clinicians understand the therapeutic value of these programs to the recovery process. This paper explores 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous in light of Margaret Mahler's conceptualization of the separation-individuation process that leads to object constancy and healthy object relations.

Based in part on a paper presented at the XVI Annual Symposium on Social Work with Groups, Hartford, Conn. October 29, 1994.