Useful Information - Addiction, Co-Dependency etc

  • What is Addiction?
  • Addiction is a persistent, compulsive dependence on a behaviour or substance. The term has been partially replaced by the word 'dependence' or the expression 'substance abuse'. Addiction has been extended, however, to include mood-altering behaviours or activities.

    Some researchers speak of two types of addictions: substance addictions (for example, alcoholism and drug abuse and process addictions (for example, gambling, spending, shopping, eating, and sexual activity).

    There is a growing recognition that many addicts, such as polydrug abusers, are addicted to more than one substance or process.

    Diagnosis:

    In addition to a preoccupation with using and acquiring the abused substance, the diagnosis of addiction is based on five criteria:

    • loss of willpower
    • harmful consequences
    • unmanageable lifestyle
    • tolerance or escalation of use
    • withdrawal symptoms upon quitting
  • What is Co-Dependency?
  • If you have suffered from addiction then you will probably have co-dependent traits.

    Co-dependency is a condition experienced by people who have not developed enough psychologically and have a dependent way of attaching to another, as if their existence is only valid in relation to others.

    Co-dependency can be very damaging because it never truly nourishes the person or their loved one yet the fear of detaching is so powerful the Co-Dependant feels compelled to continue the behaviour and in the process loses their sense of themselves.

    Sometimes this can be the main reason and the game is to hide-out in a relationship that is co-dependent without attempting to put in the work to make it healthier. Learning about Co-Dependency can be overwhelming because it can seem like every behaviour is Co-Dependent and therefore BAD. This is not the case.

    Co-Dependency, like addiction, is about learning and changing behaviour in a supportive and caring environment; being too hard on ourselves will only make matters worse.

    Co-dependency is a condition for which it is difficult to find one common definition. Ernie Larsen, a specialist in this field describes co-dependency as "Those self defeating, learned behaviours or character defects that result in a diminished capacity to initiate or participate in loving relationships".

    Melody Beattie, author of "Co-dependent No More", says "A co-dependent person is one who has let another person's behaviour affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behaviour."

     

    Patterns and Characteristics of Co-dependence - these patterns and characteristics are offered as a tool to aid in self-evaluation:

     

    Denial Patterns:

    • I have difficulty identifying what I am feeling
    • I minimize, alter or deny how I truly feel
    • I perceive myself as completely unselfish and dedicated to the well being of others.

     

    Low self esteem Patterns:

    • I have difficulty making decisions
    • I judge everything I think, say or do harshly, as never “Good Enough”
    • I am embarrassed to receive recognition and praise or gifts.
    • I do not ask others to meet my needs or desires
    • I value others’ approval of my thinking, feeling and behaviour over my own.
    • I do not perceive myself as a lovable or worthwhile person.

     

    Compliance Patterns:

    • I Compromise my own values and integrity to avoid rejection or others anger
    • I am very sensitive to how others are feeling and feel the same.
    • I am extremely loyal and remain in harmful situations too long
    • I value others opinion’s and feelings more than my own and am afraid to express differing opinions of my own.
    • I put aside my own interests and hobbies in order to do what others want.
    • I accept sex when I want love.

     

    Control Patterns:

    • I believe most other people are incapable of taking care themselves
    • I attempt to convince others of what they “Should,” think and how they truly “feel”.
    • I become resentful when others will not let me help them.
    • I freely offer others advice and directions without being asked.
    • I lavish gifts and favours on those I care about.
    • I use sex to gain approval and acceptance.
    • I have to be "needed" in order to have a relationship with others.
    • So if I identify with these symptoms then what can I do?

    Well - the first thing is not to panic! You may feel a sense of panic or a sudden feeling of hopelessness but the situation is not hopeless and there are things that you can do to start to repair the damage and pain. Norman is here to help you do just that.

  • What is Counselling?
  • Counselling is a process that focuses on helping a person to understand their issues and to make effective decisions affecting their life. A counselling session focuses on enhancing the psychological well-being of the client so that they are able to reach their full potential.

    The counsellor listens effectively to your concerns and issues and then assists you to define goals which suit your values and culture.

    The counsellor has different theories from which to work to help facilitate personal growth, self-understanding and development which empowers the client to make changes in their behaviours and attitudes in order to improve their life circumstances.

    The counselling process will help you gain clarification of your problems, and how you behave, think and feel. During counselling sessions you will work together with the counsellor and use a variety of theories and techniques to assist you in exploring your situation so that it may be understood and possibly resolved.

    Counselling is supportive, and offers a confidential, non-judgement environment for the client to resolve issues and make decisions, or just have a listening ear.

    Counselling empowers the client to make their own choices with clarity and insight for improved circumstances.

    The purpose of counselling is to enable you to find the answer to your problem so that you can experience life with greater joy and self-awareness.

  • What is Structured Intervention?
  • STRUCTURED INTERVENTION is...

    "…presenting truth to a person out of touch with reality in a receivable fashion."

    "…a procedure by which a group of caring people together with a trained professional in a caring, non-judgmental process confront an addicted person in an effort to break through that person's ambivalence about the nature and seriousness of the problem and present the reality of his/her actions by those who are adversely affected by them and get the person to some kind of treatment, before they destroy themselves or others."

     

    CORE ELEMENTS OF INTERVENTIONS

    Conveying love and acceptance for the addicted individual.

    Breaking the silence and directly confronting the person's alcohol, drug abuse, eating disorder or other addictive process through communication of the specific ways each family member has been affected by that problem.

    Asking for a commitment from the person to seek treatment for the problem and establishing individualised specific consequences if the addicted person is unwilling to cooperate by seeking treatment.

    ALL Structured Interventions using the Johnston Institute method which Norman employs are ‘successful’. The dysfunctional scenario in your family will never be the same again as you will learn how to stop enabling the dysfunction to continue. Your family will commence to recover - even in the unlikely event of your loved one not accepting the need for help.

     

    Six Steps of an Intervention:

    1. Call for help – 07909 970131: Norman will assess your crisis & determine the appropriateness of an intervention.
    2. Initial Planning: Norman will guide you through the process of organizing an effective structured intervention – to choose a possible team, dates & treatment options.
    3. Pre-Intervention educational session(s): typically scheduled the day before the planned intervention & lasting 3 to 4 hrs, you will meet with Norman to discuss addiction and its impact on family, friends, co-workers & others. You will also discuss what the treatment course & recovery process will involve. Finally written statements are prepared to share during the intervention.
    4. Pre-Intervention Rehearsal Session: to rehearse delivery of data, define order of delivery & a plan of action.
    5. Intervention: typically scheduled for the following morning - usually takes about 1-2 hrs. If the individual accepts help, they will immediately go to treatment. If they refuse help Norman will assist you to carry through your pre-planned consequences.
    6. Post-Intervention Consultation: after the intervention, you meet to put closure to the process and Norman will help you start your own path of recovery and healing.

    Post-treatment services:

    Support immediately following treatment significantly increases the probability of abstinence and aids in the major transition from treatment to independent, sober living. The goal is to provide intense, individualised care during this critical transitional period so that your loved one can begin to develop a healthy, satisfying and productive life in sobriety.

    These highly individualized services are offered at additional cost.

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