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alcoholic family, alcoholism, Confucianism, Korean culture



  1. Park, Sihyun PhD, RN
  2. Schepp, Karen G. PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC, FAAN


Abstract: The purpose of this study was to interpret the dynamics of Korean alcoholic family through the lens of Confucianism, using research conducted in South Korea. To gain an in-depth understanding of the family dynamics and the lived experiences of a certain alcoholic family having a specific ethnicity, health professionals must first understand the uniqueness of their own cultural bases and how those cultural components can shape dynamics of alcoholic family. Thus, we reviewed qualitative studies of Korean families with alcoholic fathers to investigate the unique characteristics of Korean alcoholic families in terms of Confucian thoughts and values and discuss how the Confucian thoughts affect family dynamics in those Korean alcoholic families. Relevant literature was found through Korean database Research Information Sharing Service by using several (Korean) searching terms: alcoholic, home, spouse, wife, children, and family. Articles were included if they were studies of a Korean alcoholic family and used qualitative methodology. If the studies did not include familial perspectives or not focused on alcoholism issues, those studies were excluded. Eleven qualitative studies of alcoholic family were searched. The members of alcoholic families in South Korea, including the alcoholic member, have expected roles and duties because of the influence of Confucian thoughts and values. By associating with family member's alcoholism, those expectations are a big burden on those family members. Therefore, future plans for community interventions and programs for this population should incorporate the findings from this study.