Family Based Interventions In Substance Abuse Counseling


Drug abuse has been one of the major challenges for the American government over a very long period of time. The situation is at times made complex by the intensity with which the victims desire to use and abuse the drugs. For instance, in some cases, the victims get an uncontrollable desire to use the drugs, eventually leading to the abuse of the drugs even when it might result into dire consequences. The same problem is what faces our client by the name Julie. Probably her problem began with a voluntary action of taking the drugs and consuming excessive alcohol.. When the behavior is carried on for a long period of time, the urge to stop or walk away from the substance abuse becomes compromised.

An individual finds it difficult to eventually walk away from the substance abuse as a result of becoming a drug addict. For Julie, consuming the drugs, especially alcohol to an intoxicated capacity has been the major problem that has eventually led to her being arrested on a number of occasions. The problem is that she has been into the business of using drugs to an extent that it has affected the functioning capacity of her brains (Laureate Education, 2008).  The addiction has therefore affected a number of her brains circuits and cells so that she feels functionless without the use of the drugs. Moreover, her brain cells that are involved in creating rewards and motivation for her have been greatly affected by her use of the intoxicated levels of the drugs. Finally, her addiction has brought her to a level that she feels she no longer has control over her life and the use of the drugs. The suggested solutions and appropriate counseling that she deserves to get will be outlaid in the course of this paper.

Current symptoms

For most of the drug abuse victims, the problems start when the victims get into problems either at work or at home and a result of using the drugs. Additionally, there are those who even find themselves getting into problems in their relationships as a result of using drugs. For the case of Julie, the symptoms include letting her life revolve around the use of the alcohol. She openly claims that she likes frequenting broken spoke bar where she normally drinks with her father. Moreover, she insists that even after the counseling sessions, she would not want to stop her frequent visits to the pub due to the kind of satisfaction that she derives from that place. It therefore means that she will still be in a position to get access to the drinks making her more vulnerable to future problems. The problem is also made worse by the fact that it is her father who owns the bar, so it is easy for her to pop up at any time of the day. The only problem is that she takes the drinks in excess quantities to an extent that it forces Cathy and Alexis to carry her to bed.

Apart from that, Julie can also be seen to have withdrawn from her activities that she used to enjoy in the past. For instance, she has not been able to have a cloud of friends around her due to her alcohol addiction. As a result of that, she has had the lonely feeling that makes her want to get back to her social life where she used to meet friends and date. Julie’s problems may also be occurring as a result of the divorce she had to go through with her former husband who is currently re-married. It therefore means that the drugs addiction has taken her to worst levels where she cannot do without them and she therefore loses the urge of having a man in her life (Narconon).

Another symptom that she exhibits is her continued use of the alcohol despite the fact that she knows that alcohol causes a lot of trouble in her life. Her children have their own share of problems but she cares less about that. For instance, Joshua is being tested for ADHD and at the same time, he keeps missing his classes as a result of the same. On the other hand, Alexis tries to perform so well in school but she does not get the moral support she deserves from her parent. Moreover, Julie’s addiction has topped her from getting married despite the fact that her biological clock is quickly ticking away. Finally, it can be seen that the lady may have had the desire to stop using the drugs but she has been unable to do so due to the addictions. Probably, the counseling sessions and advice will act as the best solutions for her to get over her addiction practices.

Objectives/ Outcome criteria

The primary objectives of the treatment process will be to talk to the client and give her the best solutions that will enable her to stay free from her drug addiction and alcohol abuse. There will also be a need to get the lady to her right senses so that she lives a free life that is free from violent behavior. In most cases, when is under the influence of the drugs, their judgmental capacities normally goes down thereby making them prone to getting into violent acts. Such a move would ensure that she becomes free from being a threat to herself as well as the others. For instance, she has been accustomed to the behavior of getting back home late because of staying the broken spoke bar. Eventually she struggles to get back home, and it forces both Cathy and Alexis to intervene in order to help her get to bed.


Some of the methods that will be used in the treatment process include both the behavioral and medication therapy that have proved to be very effective in the past. A combination of the two processes will begin with a detoxification process so that her blood is freed from the contents of the alcoholic contents. Thereafter, a treatment and a relapse prevention process will follow so that she no longer gets the urge to use the drinks (Gordon and Marlatt, 1985).

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