The ABC-X or Double ABC-X models have been widely applied to assess the coping mechanisms of families as well as in counseling them on how best to manage different stressors. ABC-X model contains different elements with A referring to the main stressor or event that necessitates a family to cope and successfully overcome. B denotes the different resources that are available to the family whether financial or otherwise. The C contained in this model looks at how the family perceives the stressing event while X is used to explain the likelihood of the stressor leading the family into a crisis. As can be seen from the different elements of this model, the variables B and C are the key determinants as to whether the stressor event A to the family will end up in a crisis (Rosino). The attached two case studies will be explained through this model that is extensively used to counsel and research families.
The two case studies are evident of how destructive alcohol or substance abuse can be to a family. Case study one depicts a perfect family set up with the son full of hope and aspirations for the future which have been cut short by the stressor event of an accident resulting from drunk-driving. The same can be said of the second family in which Marcel has grown in an alcoholic family that has lost their father t abuse, leaving the family dysfunctional with relations between him and his sister impaired. The traumatic experience of the accident has led Robbie to engage in further drinking just like the lifelong psychological trauma experienced by Marcel has plunges him into the world of substance abuse.
A social worker or a counselor may apply the knowledge on families through the ABC-X model to provide family life education to the parties in both cases. Robbie's case is relatively easier to manage because his accident and subsequent treatment can easily be alleviated by his family's socioeconomic status since his father is a financially stable attorney while his mother can afford to spend ample time with her son. However, his return to drinking should be handled by the parents who ought to take his drinking problem seriously since they seem oblivious to it as a potential crisis. On the other hand, Marcel is disadvantaged due to his socioeconomic status and race. As a person from the minority community, he is vulnerable to indulging in substance abuse without anyone to guide him because even the relations with his sister are not solid. He is in a crisis mode and only counseling and rehabilitation can help his cause.
The ripple effect of continuous use of drugs, alcohol, and other illicit substances is felt by an entire family. It takes the comprehension of the developmental phase in which the affected family member is in to help with the most appropriate intervention studies. Prolonged abuse of drugs and/or alcohol will deteriorate a person's physical health and impair their mental functioning; not to mention the detrimental effects it has on the immediate family of the alcohol or substance user. The behavioral, emotional, and psychological patterns of the different family members are affected by alcohol and substance abuse because of the adverse outcomes to both the children and grown-ups in the family. Social workers can apply either the ABC-X or the double ABC-X models to help intervene and counsel such families.
Rosino, M. (2016). ABCX model of family stress and coping. Wiley Online Library. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119085621.wbefs313
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