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    Individual Pathology Perspective

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    Read the case study below and imagine that your client presented this situation to you in couples therapy.

    Jody and Ted have been married for ten years. Last year, Jody's mom passed away and since then she has been drinking heavily. Ted has taken over getting the kids off to school and he sometimes has to call Jody's work when she is hungover and let them know that she is "sick." The couple also argues over money and parenting issues. Jody is very lenient with their two young children while Ted tends to be strict. Ted has been begging Jody to get help but she refuses. She will, however, attend couples counseling because she would like the arguing in the house to stop.

    Assess the case from a traditional individual pathology perspective, noting how you would proceed with this case. Discuss specifically who you would see, how would you structure therapy, what your therapeutic goals would be, and some possible recommendations. Next, assess this case from a systemic or relational perspective. Be sure to address the following issues:

    •How would you identify the client?
    •What systemic model of therapy would you use?
    •What are the goals of therapy according to that model?
    •What is the role of the therapist who is using that model?

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    Solution Preview

    (1) How would you identify the client?

    Jody and Ted have marital problems that appear to stem from Jody's drinking and their financial problems. Research suggest that alcohol is one of the most common addicted drugs that can have an effect on a relationship. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders group disorders related to drugs that are abused include alcohol beverages. (e.g., beer wine, distilled spirits) that produce a relaxed euphoria, that temporarily boosts self-esteem, Side effects include impairment in mental and motor functioning, and mood swing.
    Clients can be identified regarding their tendency to abuse substances through a screening device. For instance, individuals involved in the communication process in a screening interview provide information that can be useful in making a diagnosis. J. Sommers-Flanagan & R. Sommers-Flanagan point to two possible rules in human communication: the sender of the message and the receiver of the message. Further, they emphasize that communication is so complex that roles are often interspersed. Consequently they list essential elements that are necessary to establish rapport between the interviewer and the interviewee that include: (a) listening, empathetic responding and behavioral skills. The importance of listening well is essential to have open communication, and a healthy relationship between the interviewer and client.

    In Jody's case as illustrated in the scenario, under the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM as cited in Brief interventions) criteria, brief interventions are aimed at the nondependent user. For instance, in substance abuse treatment settings, the goal is to determine the client's stage of change such as the one developed by Prochaska and DiClemente (1992 as cited in Brief interventions). These five (5) ...

    Solution Summary

    This in-depth solution examines a case study from the perspective of Individual Pathology perspective. All the references used are included.