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Addictions Counseling

The Video

The video that I reviewed is titled “Addictions Counselling”. The video is a counseling session with a client who has battled with heroin addiction for years but is struggling to deal with life sober (Counselling Channel, 2014). The video starts off with the client wondering if her life had been different if she had a different upbringing. She talks about how her brother introduced her to heroin and the issues that she had with her mother. The session then turns from addictions at the 11 minute mark and starts to take a mental health turn for the next hour and a half. The client discusses her childhood with her mother and how she processed this as an adult. Then out of nowhere, the counselor addresses the emotions of the client. The counselor then processes things like comfort and being empty. The video ends with the counselor describing the importance of the therapeutic relationship and processing childhood events.

My Interest in the Addiction Population

I am interested in this population because I have dealt with many addictions in my life. I have my own addictions that I have to deal with and have seen family members with addictions. I feel that the best way to serve my community is to show those who are addicted that there is more to life than just drugs and alcohol.

Insights and Conclusion

One of the main insights that I gained from the video is the importance of dealing with childhood issues. A client that uses drugs may be using the drugs to mask things and may not have the proper coping skills to figure out life. The client in the video did not know how to process her pain in the video now that she is sober. The counselor used open ended questions and also built a rapport with the client (Erford, B., 2018). She also confronted the client with her own words, an example of reflective listening (Erford, B., 2018). The clients’ issues ranged from upbringing to not being fulfilled in life. There was very little discussion about the drugs, only in reflection of how her traumas may have resulted to her choices. The video did have a section in which the counselor describes what addiction is and how Lucy (the client) used, which led to her distortions in thinking. The video was helpful in showing the clients distortions by repeating back to her her answers and processing what they meant.

Challenging Population

This video confirmed my views with this population. The drug is sometimes just the means of escape and is not always the underlying issue. In this video, Lucy’s emptiness and emotional journey was showcased. In addictions counseling, I want to go through the journey of use and sobriety with the client. Just like any other form of therapy, there are stereotypes to this population. In the video, the counselor did not judge the client about her use but instead focused on the clients thinking and emotions associated with her life today in the present. I am excited about working with this population because it appears to be a blend between substance abuse and mental health. It is about meeting the client where they are at (the present) but processing the past and planning the future.


Counselling Channel (Producer). (2014). Addictions Counselling [Video file]. Retrieved from Academic Video Online: Premium database..

Erford, B. T. (Ed.). (2018). Orientation to the counseling profession: Advocacy, ethics, and essential professional foundations (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

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