Engagement and disengagement in addiction recovery settings are important for these communities and their members. This study tested an Affective Events Theory (AET) model of these constructs in the Oxford House network of recovery homes. Residents’ congruence with their home (P-E fit) was hypothesized to directly influence behavior that supported the house and other residents—citizenship behavior. We further hypothesized P-E fit would be related to member intentions to leave, with attitudes toward the home mediating that relationship. To assess this, we administered a cross-sectional national survey to 296 residents of 83 randomly selected Oxford Houses. Although the AET model demonstrated good fit with the data, an alternative model fit better. This alternative model suggested an additional indirect relationship between P-E fit and citizenship mediated by attitudes. Results suggested affective experiences such as feeling like one fits with a community may influence engagement and disengagement. There appears to be a direct influence of fit on citizenship behavior and an indirect influence of fit through recovery home attitudes on both citizenship and intentions to leave the home. We conclude affective experiences could be important for community engagement and disengagement but AET may need to integrate cognitive dissonance theory.
Update: Now available via online first publication.