Counselling the Person beyond the Alcohol Problem

Counselling the Person beyond the Alcohol Problem

Counselling the Person beyond the Alcohol Problem

Counselling the Person beyond the Alcohol Problem

Synopsis

"At the heart of Richard Bryant-Jefferies work with problem drinkers is his belief in the power and effectiveness of the person-centred approach to counselling. He suggests that many alcohol problems develop out of, or are connected with, relationship difficulties. He highlights the importance of building a therapeutic relationship with the person, and of engaging with their individuality to encourage sustainable lifestyle change underpinned by personal growth. This practical book shows how such client-focused counselling can support problem drinkers who are seeking to develop and sustain a less alcohol-centred way of life. Supported by contributions from clients who have undergone counselling for alcohol reliance, this is a comprehensive and positive guide for people working with those who have a harmful relationship with alcohol." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

I do not know what prompted me to apply for the post of Primary Health Care Alcohol Liaison Worker and Counsellor with the Acorn Community Drug and Alcohol Service in Surrey, other than that it somehow felt right. I had not previously had experience of working with people with alcohol problems. It was late 1994 and I had recently left my job as a Fundholding Manager at a GP surgery in Guildford, having earlier completed my diploma training in person-centred counselling and psychotherapy. I had chosen the personcentred approach because it offered me a way of working with people that made so much sense. My training reinforced my belief in the importance of having genuine respect for other people. I experienced the reality of the ‘facilitative climate’ through which growth can occur. I was fired up with the ideas of Carl Rogers, keen to apply them in my new career of counsellor.

It was while I filled in my application form that I knew it was the job for me. I had not previously thought of working in this area, yet looking back now I see that I owe a great deal to a past experience that I had thought was forgotten. Some years before, a manager of mine had had an alcohol problem and while aware of it I had no idea what to do, or how to help. The job application reconnected me with that experience. With hindsight, I could have done something. At the time, though, I was not in the right place within myself to offer anything; I certainly had no concept of how damaging and life-threatening a serious alcohol problem can be. He died and somehow the seriousness of his drinking did not impress itself on me until his locker was discovered to be full of empty sherry . . .

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