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Subst Use Misuse. 2013 Jun;48(9):750-60. doi: 10.3109/10826084.2013.787100. Epub 2013 Apr 22.

A qualitative analysis of women's experiences in single-gender versus mixed-gender substance abuse group therapy.

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  • 1Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Program, McLean Hospital, Belmont, Massachusetts 02478, USA.


The present study of women with substance use disorders used grounded theory to examine women's experiences in both the Women's Recovery Group (WRG) and a mixed-gender Group Drug Counseling (GDC). Semi-structured interviews were completed in 2005 by 28 women in a U.S. metropolitan area. Compared to GDC, women in WRG more frequently endorsed feeling safe, embracing all aspects of one's self, having their needs met, feeling intimacy, empathy, and honesty. In addition, group cohesion and support allowed women to focus on gender-relevant topics supporting their recovery. These advantages of single-gender group therapy can increase treatment satisfaction and improve treatment outcomes.

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