Toivo paranemisesta: nuoren naisen päihdetarinan rakentuminen haastattelussa


  • Taina Ukkonen



This article focuses on personal experience narration about drug abuse and treatment. The material was elicited from a life-story interview with a young woman called Hannele, who was in substitution treatment meant for opioid users. The approach is material-based: the author has constructed Hannele’s ”drug-story” and compared it with the institutional model narrative about recovery from drug problems. Hereby the author has been influenced by the folkloristic study of personal experience narratives and social scientific research on narratives. The model narrative is commonly known in treatment systems, and it tells us how it is possible to cope with drug problems and return to normal life. The hero of the story is a humble recipient of help and professional treatment, who aims to change his or her lifestyle completely and become fully abstinent. Hannele’s story describes how she started using cannabis, then amphetamine and heroine and how she stopped using them without any professional help. Then the story continues with buprenorphine (Subutex) use, which caused problems and made her apply for treatment. Hannele as the hero of the story is a self-motivated and even obstinate client who defines her treatment goals independently. Her story is a so-called ”short-step story” challenging the traditional model story and its requirement for complete abstinence and a comprehensive change of lifestyle and identity.





Ukkonen, T. (2007). Toivo paranemisesta: nuoren naisen päihdetarinan rakentuminen haastattelussa. Elore, 14(1).



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