Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Addictions, Codependency and Family Functioning

Although my client base is self selecting and not representative of the general population, I am still amazed and distressed at the frequency with which addictions are part of my clients' lives.

When I first started out in private practice, I relied primarily upon formal diagnostic criteria (DSM-IV) as a means to identify the presence of an addiction. The DSM-IV provides a sound measure of substance abuse and dependence that is based on the frequency, amount and history as well as the substance's impact on a person's life. On its own, it provides a very acceptable way of assessing one aspect of an addiction problem.

Over the years, I have found that these criteria miss an important element in the addiction process; the impact a substance and/or an activity (and the resulting behavior) has on the family system.

To read this article in its entirety, please click here.

For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/


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