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In a minimum of 200 words, respond to the below posting by:

  • Asking a probing question.
  • Sharing an insight from having read your colleague’s posting, or
  • Expanding on your colleague’s posting.

Identify a treatment approach that you think best addresses the various issues described in your selected case study.

I chose to stick with my favored approach of harm reduction in the case of Carol. Carol is 39, released on parole and a current user of marijuana also has a lengthy use of marijuana and has the support of a mother and aunt in her use of the substance. Carol has been in the legal systems for several years on various charges including assault with a deadly weapon. There are no significant historical childhood issues mentioned in a brief history however she did have cancer and has remained in remission since the age of 17 when she had to have her uterus removed d/t the cancer found. I find that the developmental theory which discusses self-regulation and the stages in which a person moves from external to internal control would work side by side with the harm reduction if done properly. Wagner, E. F. (2008) notes that “when behaviors are self-directed mature individuals then become more and more autonomous”. Self-regulation is thought to contain three stages; self-monitoring, self-evaluation, and self-reinforcement. Carol appears to struggle with the self-monitoring and could use assistance with this through use of the developmental theory alongside the probation use of harm reduction approach as she does not wish to stop use of marijuana altogether as she feels that this helps her although how was not discussed as of yet.

Limitations of the treatment approach

Wagner, E. F. (2008) identified that there are deficits in one’s ability to accomplish self-control in the above stated areas of emotion which may account for addictive behaviors. I believe this could be plausible with Carol as she was never able to fully move through the stages. Also, motivations derived from oneself instead of being forced by hand through legal means could also prove to predict a person’s long-term behavior change but this is still unknown scientifically. Wagner, E. F. (2008) stated there are four concerns; there are weak psychometrics in the instruments measuring the stages, the model may fit better with the behavior change model versus this one, it is cross-sectional in design and does not quite show the process involved throughout the stages and only really looks at the recognition of needing change and then the actual taking of steps to change.

How you would address these limitations

Wagner, E. F. (2008) used a non-profit, low-level, nonviolent drug offenders on felony probation in his studies and I believe once again Carol although having a history of charges and one with a deadly weapon could fit into the use of this treatment and model of harm reduction given the proper tool and skills to advance her self-regulation and internal motivating behaviors. She could have weekly urine tests to test against use of other substances and journal her use of marijuana. If she fails to show for her treatment, therapy or urine she could face probation noncompliance and have new charges however if she shows for a mandated time frame for therapy to look at working on the self-regulation then dropping the probation time frame could be an external goal to achieve.


Brocato, J., & Wagner, E. F. (2008). Predictors of retention in an alternative-to-prison substance abuse treatment programLinks to an external site.Links to an external site.. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 35(1), 99–119.

Geyer, M. D. (2009). Treatment outcome models

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