As a specialist in pain medicine since the 1970s (Dr. Gagne) and a clinical psychologist treating chemical dependency and personality and mood disorders since 1980 (Dr. Weedn), we are amazed at how far pain treatment has come, even though it remains mired in its central conundrum: the tendency to oversimplify. Simply stated, too many practitioners see only what they are trained to treat.
In 1986, the drug in the news was cocaine. It was portrayed as the drug of choice for the wealthy, jet-setting, indulgent, yuppie demographic in powder form, and of those in run-down urban areas in the form of crack. Its use was rampant and cited as a major factor in the need for increased law enforcement and seizures. Yet rarely were the dangers of the drug, and its impact on human lives, discussed. On June 19, 1986, that changed.
The title of this article may shock you, especially when you realize that I am considered a trauma expert in many circles, traveling the country educating other professionals on trauma competency, especially within the context of addiction services. But really, I mean it: trauma isn’t the problem.
In the offering of addiction treatment, this article presents one clinician’s method to reflect feelings and actions with respect to transference and counter-transference.
One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light but by making the darkness conscious. ~C.G. Jung