The Convergence of Group Psychotherapy and the Twelve Steps of AA

The Convergence of Group Psychotherapy and the Twelve Steps of AA

21 Pages · 2003 · 237 KB · English

Put differently, “alcoholism is the horse, not the cart of mental illness”. (1983 .. comradeship and shared problems coupled with the added asset of the emotional objectivity .. Similarities and Differences for each groups Modalities.

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JAD/2003 2003 © BREINING INSTITUTE (2003JAD0312021624) WWWBREININGEDU 1 JOURNAL OF ADDICTIVE DISORDERS THE CONVERGENCE OF GROUP PSYCHOTHERAPY AND THE TWELVE STEPS OF AA 1 ARTICLE Abstract Alcoholics and other chemically dependent people seem to recover best in\ group therapy settings Groups effectively break down the denial process through a com\ bination of identification, confrontation, feedback and support Every alcoholic/CD \ should be strongly encouraged to regularly attend AA/NA meetings Many specialists consider it the single most important aspect of treatment Formal alcoholism/CD group therapy is als\ o successful In concert, AA and group therapy are highly successful, constituting one of\ the strongest forms of treatment available (Gitlow & Peyser 1980; Pattison & Kaufman 1982; Wh\ itfield 1981 & 1982) In the past, substance abuse treatment was split between two groups: tho\ se who believed in substance abuse recovery programs, typified by AA and other twelvestep selfhelp programs, therapeutic communities, rehabilitation programs, as well as groups espo\ using relapse prevention, and the medical/psychiatric community , which has used psychiatric treatment as the means to achieve often similar goals The former believed that group treatment was effective, abstinence was the goal of treatment, and helping the abuser/addict to r\ elearn more constructive and less selfdestructive behavior relating to substances o\ f abuse as well as to interpersonal relationships was the main process leading to recovery Th\ e latter used a variety of forms of psychiatic treatment, including individual and group psycho\ therapies as well as psychopharmacologic intervention and were interested in treating comorbi\ d disorders as well In recent years, there has been a recognition that an integrated treatment \ program, combining features of both models, is more successful than either approach used al\ one In both designs, the use of group treatment has been increasingly recognized as the most \ therapeutically and economically effective method of reaching out and helping these difficul\ t to treat patients Group therapy and integrated substance abuse treatment programs have grown rapidly, both as fields of knowledge and in their more widespread clinical applications(Brook \ & Spitz etal) Word identification Chemical Dependency(CD), Alcoholics Anonymous(AA), Narcotics Anonymous(NA), SelfHelp Groups(SHG), Group Psychotherapy(GPT), Group In terpersonal Therapy(GIT), Professionally Directed Groups(PDG) 1 This copyrighted material may be copied in whole or in part, provided t\ hat the material used is properly referenced, and that the following citation is used in full: Sa\ dler, MJ (2003) The Convergence of Group Psychotherapy and the Twelve Steps of AA Journal of Addictive Disorders Retrieved from http://wwwbreiningedu JAD/2003 JOURNAL OF ADDICTIVE DISORDERS 2003 © BREINING INSTITUTE (2003JAD0312021624) WWWBREININGEDU 2 A Brief History of Group Psychotherapy Most authors trace the origins of group therapy in the United States to \ the beginning of the twentieth century, when Dr Joseph Pratt began to conduct health classes\ for the tubercular patients in Boston These classes employed lectures as well as selfpres\ entations by recovering patients and supportive group interaction During roughly the same perio\ d, Dr Elwood Worcester, rector of Emmanuel Church in Boston, established the “Emma\ nuel Church health classes” or “Emmanuel Movement,” using group methods Worcester\ and his associate, Samuel McComb, worked with a physician, Dr Isador H Coriat, combining medical\ and spiritual principles They took an interest in treating alcohol dependence and wro\ te on the subject as early as 1908 Another member

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