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Codependency and Substance Abuse

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Can you address the following:

Discuss, while protecting confidentiality, a case example of codependency, dual diagnosis, addiction, or substance abuse you have encountered during your clinical experience or can you hypothesize about how you might handle one.

Utilizing information from readings or other articles you have located in the professional literature, describe the approach you used for working with these presenting issues.

How would it be determined that this would be the most effective approach to use? Give an example of at least one specific intervention used, and describe the impact this intervention had on the client.

Discuss the reactions or feelings one might have working with this client. Discuss methods used to address any countertransference.

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Solution Preview

Can you address the following?

(1) Discuss, while protecting confidentiality, a case example of codependency, dual diagnosis, addiction, or substance abuse you have encountered during your clinical experience or can you hypothesize about how you might handle one.

Case Example

Susie X, a 25-year old African American female presents with a dual diagnosis of a substance abuse disorder and a medical condition—Auto Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). For months, the family has been dealing with the devastating effects of Susie' illness coupled with their daughter's addiction to alcohol. Susie drinks to counteract the pain associated with AIDS. The family sympathized with her because of her struggle with the devastating disease, even bringing her alcohol they believed that was allowing her to function. At first, Susie was handling the illness well, but a moment of depression initiated her bout with alcohol. She has since become dependent on drinking to get through the average day. Her mother recognizes that Susie has a drinking problem, sheet, yet the family continues to aid in her addiction through support (including financial and emotional).Susie excuses her drinking as coping with the pain and memory of her condition. However, lately she is spiraling out of control, and has become abusive and violent. The family is experiencing the backlash of their codependency in supplying her with the alcohol that feeds her addiction.

Research shows that there is a dangerous link between substance abuse, irresponsible sexual behavior, and AIDS. Codependency adds to the bewilderment of complex issues surrounding the contraction of AIDS. Thus, adding to the question of how to best help, family members often substitute helpful behaviors for love and concern by enabling the addicted person to maintain his or her addiction. Based on a feminist critique of the term codependency the term is considered, "A euphemism for the practice of dominance and subordination". This theoretical position underscores the concept as the beginning of personal problems of the individual, and not social contexts. In other words, feminists view male-dominated attitudes regarding gender, race, class and sexuality as what "makes people sick"(Sands, 1997).

However, issues such as socio-economic, racism, and sexism are risk factors for African American women that can lead to substance abuse, and addiction. Substance use may also be instituted as a routine defense against disappointment, frustration, and stress in personal experience with society (Shaw, ...

Solution Summary

This solution examines a case of substance abuse and codependency. Examples of codependency, dual diagnosis, addiction, or substance abuse that expert has encountered during their clinical experience are provided.

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