This paper addresses the possible consequences of histories of violence and abuse on women’s subsequent drinking behaviours. Twenty-one autobiographical accounts were collected and analysed, in a qualitative study that applied life history methodology, informed by feminist epistemology. Representative dominant research themes of child sexual abuse, rape and domestic violence emerge, and the effects of continuums of violence on women’s alcohol misuse are explored within the oppressive social and political contexts of abused women’s lives. Alcohol misuse as an available personal survival orcoping strategy for women survivors of genderbased violence is theorised. The chosen research methodology is assessed, and considered to be antioppressive and ethically advantageous. Implications for improving health and social care practiceswith women problem drinkers who may have experienced personal violence are also considered.