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Biography

Carrie Randazzo has over fifteen years of experience working with adults, adolescents and their families in areas of mental health and chemical dependency. She is a graduate of the California School of Professional Psychology specializing in cross cultural psychology. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychology at National University, the Clinical Director at Touchstone Recovery Center in Clovis, and is a Clinical Supervisor for the Offender Mentorship Program through the California Association of Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Counselors (CAADAC). Dr. Randazzo is an active member of CAADAC, and is Certified as a Clinical Supervisor.

Abstract

This paper explores current literature and research related to the complex variables that inhibit women’s substance abuse treatment entry, re-entry, and treatment completion of both outpatient and residential treatment. Current research indicates that a vast majority of these women report living with a significant individual who actively uses alcohol or other drugs. Research also indicates that the partner's behavior and attitude towards treatment have been strongly associated with motivation to enter and successfully complete treatment. The relevancy of utilizing a brief relationship and unconscious agenda workup, developed by Dr. Gary Brainerd, a clinical psychologist and Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice in Southern California will also be explored. This brief workup is based on Imago therapy which is a form of marriage therapy that takes a relationship approach rather than an individual approach to problem solving in an intimate relationship. Dr. Brainerd's workup helps identifies the "wounds and protections”" experienced in early childhood and adolescence, which ultimately are used as protective strategies in adulthood. These protective strategies are hypothesized as relevant in chemical dependency as they may identify the cognitive distortions and defense mechanisms prevalent in this population, while assisting in providing coping strategies to minimize the impulsive nature of this disease, as it relates to enhancing relationships in early sobriety and recovery in this high-risk population.

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