This paper examines the characteristics of alcoholics and drug addicts who terminate their addictions without the benefit of treatment. Using what is commonly referred to as "natural recovery" processes, respondents terminated their addictions without formal treatment or self-help group assistance. Data for this study are based on in-depth interviews with 25 alcoholics and drug addicts who were identified through snowball sampling techniques. First, we examine the postaddict identities of our respondents to see how they view themselves in relation to their addictive past. Next, we explore the reasons respondents gave for avoiding treatment and self-help groups. We then examine the factors in our respondents' lives that promoted natural recovery. Finally, this paper concludes with a discussion of the relevance of our findings to clinical treatment and social policy.

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