Friday, October 17, 2014

Practice with a Free Case Study

After completing a biopsychosoicial assessment, and an additional session with Mel and Megan, you begin to formulate assumptions about the personal and interpersonal strengths, resources, and difficulties that brought them to marital counseling. Megan expressed in the initial session with you that she has concerns relating to her relationship with her husband, Mel, and that she would like at least some individual counseling sessions with you to discuss personal issues that she feels uncomfortable discussing with Mel in the room. Mel grimaces and looks at Megan with a disdainful look and tells you that he does not have anything to hide and whatever she has to say she should say in front of him. From what Megan stated in the beginning sessions, you discern that if Megan’s concerns are expressed in front of Mel, this could result in emotionally and/or physically negative repercussions against Megan. In therapy, Mel has openly demonstrated his anger, criticism, resistance, and difficulty relinquishing control over Megan. Megan hinted that Mel and her father bear certain similarities in their behavior, and use of control mechanisms with her. You see through Mel’s covert attempts to keep certain aspects of their relationship secret and his attempts to control Megan through modulating his tone of voice, carefully choosing his words and body language and their effect on Megan. You suspect that there is the possibility of domestic violence in the marriage. You further suspect that from Megan’s comments that she has witnessed or experienced domestic violence in her family of origin, with her father as the perpetrator.


From assessment information, therapists _____________ clients; therapists interpret information to determine if an emotional or mental disorder is present, rather than _______________. If an emotional or mental disorder is present in a client, it is ____________________. :


A) Diagnose; making a value judgment of the client’s worth; a single aspect of that individual, not a prime descriptor of his or her life

B) Assess; diagnose a client’s value; considered in the treatment plan

C) Describe a client’s condition; describe the client’s condition; the essential characteristic of that person and determines the course of treatment

D) Determine whether to proceed with therapy; ruling out and dismissing possibilities of other diagnoses from the initial assessment only; neither ethical nor unethical to discuss the diagnosis with the client







Explanation: According to Hohenshil, 1993, “Diagnosis…is the meaning or interpretation that is derived from assessment information and is usually translated in the form of some type of classification system.” Diagnoses describe a person’s condition, and do not determine the worth or value of a client. People are individuals, not the disorder; clients have a particular type of mental or emotional disorder that is only one aspect of the person, not the fundamental descriptor of his/her life or person. Diagnoses change based upon information gathered from subsequent contact with the client in therapy.