M6D1: Alcoholism as a Family Disease

Module 6

As always, this discussion will simulate a face to face discussion in a classroom. We will go through the questions as a group beginning with the first question. As we answer each of the questions, we will move to the next one together. Read what others have said and add to the discussion in a substantive manner. There is no right or wrong in discussion postings, but you should demonstrate an ability to relate the course materials to the discussion questions and your interactions with me and your classmates in an articulate, well-reasoned manner.

Begin by discussing the following question in your opinion and based on what we have learned over the past five weeks together.

1. This week, we are looking at addictions from the family perspective, including the person who is substance dependent/abusing as a part of the family. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement: Addiction is often described as a family disease. Please explain your opinion.

This week, we are reading about many different facets of addictions impacts on families. We will be talking a great deal about codependence. Please review your Schwartz reading, a fictitious email in the addictions blog entitled, Codependent and Enabling Behaviors (Links to an external site.), which we will use as a case example in the readings-application portion of our discussion.

2. First, lets talk about co-dependence within the family. What roles does co-dependence play in the relationships between the substance abuser and family members? How might co-dependence manifest for different family members? Consider the relationships with significant others (spouses, partners, etc), parents, children, and siblings? What elements of co-dependence do you see in the fictional email? How might you address the writers concerns?

3. Now that we have explored what co-dependence is and how it is manifested in this email, lets talk about moving beyond co-dependence in supporting persons with abuse/dependence problems. How do we support someone without also not taking responsibility for their addiction and recovery? How do we support the family members? For example, if Worried Parent lived in your community, what resources would you recommend, and why those in particular?

4. Lets wrap up by applying what we have learned to Nic and his family. Nics addictive process clearly affected himself and his family. What were the consequences of Nics addiction on all of those around him – family, grandparents, girlfriend, friends, family friends, community members, other users? How were these impacts evidenced? As you engage in conversation, be sure to consider the impacts that the abuse had on the community. Explore the impacts on one or two relationships that struck you as compelling.

Note: We will be discussing each question together as a group, one at a time. As you create your posts, remember that the goal is an informed, dynamic conversation. Be creative in your headings and responsive to others who have posted before you. As you create responses to others, create new and descriptive titles to your post. Dont simply put “re:” or type in a person’s name that is already clear from the thread. Instead, if you type a full sentence or long enough phrase that the point of your post will be clear. This tip for using the subject line effectively will make navigating all discussion threads easy and meaningful. There is no right or wrong response, but you should demonstrate an ability to relate the module materials to the discussion questions in an articulate, well-reasoned manner.











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