Substance Abuse and the Family demonstrates what it means to view addiction through a systems lens by considering biology and genetics, family relationships, and larger systems. Throughout the text, Michael D. Reiter shows how to examine a person's predilection to become addicted, his or her social environment around substance use, the functionality of his or her family, and various treatment options.
Chapters are organized around two sections: Assessment and Treatment. The first section pays attention to how the family system organizes around substance use and abuse. Here family roles, culture, and other issues such as family violence and resilience are covered. Two chapters are also included on the neuroscience and genetics of addiction, with contributions from Jaime L. Tartar and Christina Gobin. There are also chapters on working with partial systems, using genograms, and working in a culturally-sensitive way (with contributions from Dalis Arismendi), with culture-specific consideration paid to African American, Hispanic and Latin American, Asian American, and Native American families.
The second half of the book explores what a systems orientation means in practice and goes over self-help groups for individuals and families. An overview of the major family therapy theories is included, which examines intergenerational, experiential, communication approaches, strategic, systemic, and post-modern models. A separate chapter examines issues faced by both youth and adult children of alcoholics. Intended for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as beginning practitioners, this text is one of the most penetrating and in-depth examinations on the topic available.