PSYCHOTHERAPY: ADDICTION, CODEPENDENCY, ADULT CHILDREN OF ALCOHOLICS
Psychological assistance and psychotherapy of addicted persons
Nowadays, addicted persons often function well. The picture of a “typical drunkard”, drunk since the very morning is more and more often replaced with other pictures, more difficult to recognise:
- a senior manager having a glass of whisky “for better sleep” everynight in front of his fireplace
- a beautiful young girl, who after a working week usually relaxes in a company of a joint and an accidentally acquainted boy
- 40-year-olds who while meeting with a group of old friends from the university try a new stimulant every time, which they call “looking for boundaries”
- a menopausal seriously ill woman, who before each doctor’s meeting and each medical test buys a new scarf
- a woman making an international career in marketing, who regularly before important presentations spends an evening drinking “one glass of wine too much” (luckily, her presentations are still very good)
Each of those people may wonder whether they are addicted. May similar persons visit psychologists’ offices, including my office. They talk about their doubts, they are worried with their actions (and their consequences) or say that it was a close person that advised them to visit a psychologist. To better assess the situation, usually during the first meeting we try together to define the factors of addiction. Only later we discuss possibilities and conditions of a therapy: we define the goals and methods of work and schedule meetings.
Contemporary forms of addictions
Some of the features of contemporary world such as easy access to various goods, anonymous social relations and sales transactions, pressure on professional efficiency or changing family and social relationships influence also addictions. Behaviour patterns related to addictions change, addicted persons change, addiction therapies change as well as things people get addicted to: substances (designer drugs, drugs) and activities (games, internet, gambling, sex, shopping, physical exercises, work).
Some of the forms of addictions require specific forms of therapies (e.g. detoxification at a psychiatric hospital because of strong withdrawal syndrome and its side effects). Other addictions may be treated with psychotherapy.
Regardless of whatever you are or may be addicted to, it may be beneficial to consult a specialist: a psychologist, a psychotherapist, an addiction therapist, a GP doctor. Only after such consultation, you will know what your situation is and what are the options of treatment.
Psychological assistance and psychotherapy of codependent persons
Family members of addicted persons often suffer equally as much as the addicted person, because addiction usually influences the whole family. They often try to help the addicted person without any success. They see how much the addicted person harms himself or herself and they have very limited influence over the addicted person’s behaviour. They suffer various consequences of the addiction of their relative: financial, psychological or related to sharing home duties. They also suffer from permanent stress, losing safety and stability and they are unable to take care of many of their needs.
In such situation, family members of an addicted person try to manage the situation the best they can, but it often occurs that their actions, which they consider proper, are not only not improving but deteriorating the situation.
Psychologists call such situation codependency trap. It is a trap, because what they intuitively see as helpful and serving solving the problem, does the opposite – hinders solving the problem. When we are in a situation of codependency, seeking a specialist assistance is advisable. As a psychologist and a psychotherapist, I can help you to learn better methods of adapting to your situation.
Psychological assistance and psychotherapy of adult children of alcoholics (ACA therapy)
Children growing up in families where one or both parents are alcoholics experience very specific problems. Their emotional reactions, thinking and behaving patterns, which they had learned in childhood and which were effective then, used in adult life make it difficult for them to build close relationships with other people and be happy in their relationships. Such disorder of adaptation to situation psychologists call ACA (Adult Child of Alcoholic) syndrome.
Later, the psychologists have noticed that very similar difficulties are encountered also by other people, who have grown up in disfunctional families, i.e. families with serious functioning disorders, for example caused by violence, long absence or emigration of one of the parents, serious somatic or mental illness of a family member. This syndrome of difficulties characteristic to such people has been named ACODF – Adult Children of Disfunctional Families syndrome.
At my psychologist’s office in Warsaw I assist ACA and ACODF persons as well as the addicted and codependent persons to return to normal life. I encourage to contacting me by the phone and scheduling a psychological consultation, during which you may decide whether you want to work with me. I am a certified psychologist and a psychotherapist – you will always have my full understanding and can rely on my discretion. I offer my assistance in solving your problems.
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If you need psychological help, contact me.