Discussion: Unique Features of Addictions Treatment A therapist specializing in childhood sexual abuse would not likely divulge his or her experience with a similar trauma. Instead, the therapist would most likely have a doctorate in psychology, counseling, or social work, and would take an objective role in therapy. However, this is not the case in addictions treatment. In fact, it was not until the mid-1970s that licensure of addictions counselors became common practice. Prior to that time, it was common for addictions counselors to enter the field with a history of substance abuse. Today, however, many view the treatment of addictions as a complex process requiring specialized skills and education. The practice of recovering substance abusers serving as addictions professionals is one unique feature of the field of addictions. Addictions professionals should understand both sides of this argument and be familiar with other unique aspects of the addictions field. To prepare for this Discussion: Review the Learning Resources, particularly Learning the Language of Addiction Counseling, Chapter 13, “Personal and Professional Development of the Counselor” (pp. 436-438). By Day 4 Post your response to the following question: Does personal history of addiction and treatment make counselors more effective? Provide an informed argument based on the week’s Learning Resources and any other factors you have identified. Finally, describe two other aspects of the addiction field that are uniquely different from the general field of mental health, and explain why they are different. Be specific and use the week’s Learning Resources in your response.
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