Original Article

Exploring possible network properties facilitating recovery for residents of sober living homes

Leonard A. Jason1, Ted Bobak1, Mohammed Islam1, Mayra Guerrero1, John M. Light2

1DePaul University, Chicago, USA
1DePaul University, Chicago, USA
2Oregon Research Institute, Oregon, USA


Background: Recovery homes provide supportive settings for thousands of individuals with substance use disorders each year. However, not all residents of recovery homes improve in these settings, and the reasons for both improvement and lack of improvement are still unclear. It is possible that those low in recovery might benefit when they are in settings with high recovery residents.
Methods: : We examined social network ties among 19 recovery home settings that had pairings of low and high recovery residents
Results: We found that low recovery factor individuals generally increased their recovery factor scores over time. In the cases where recovery factor scores did not increase, the low recovery factor individuals had few social network ties with the high recovery residents.
Conclusions: Both selection and influence can likely be factors that affect recovery behavior in these social settings, as residents may select friends who already exhibit similar behaviors as their own or be influenced by friends to adjust their behavior, so it is more like that of the group. A dynamic systems-based perspective can help investigators better understand how recovery-related behaviors and social relationships co-evolve, and how individual characteristics and house-level social structures ca

Keywords: Oxford houses; recovery homes; relapse predictors; recovery latent factor, social networks