Vargas Case Study

Since the last session,

you received a call from Elizabeth who stated her family was in crisis. She reported that her nephew Geoff, the 15-year-old stepson of Bob’s sister, Katie, had nearly overdosed. She said that the family had noticed some changes with Geoff since his father’s recent death, but attributed the poor mood and slipping grades to the normal effects of grief. Elizabeth said that Geoff had never used drugs, as far as anybody in the family knew, and that the overdose was “a total surprise.” Elizabeth reported that after learning of this, Bob’s mother, Linda, called the school counselor but complained to Katie that “she was not at all helpful,” and told Katie exactly how she should handle it. Katie spoke with the school counselor who told her that she was not allowed to speak with Linda due to matters of confidentiality. Elizabeth informed you that Katie had shared her frustration with the school counselor’s suggestions to help him “get his mind off the sadness,” and believed he needed more help. You learned that Bob’s father, Tim, was trying his best to help, and that Elizabeth felt his intrusion was making matters worse. Among other things, Tim had taken Geoff out of school on a week-long camping trip against Katie’s wishes. Elizabeth said that the involvement of Linda and Tim, despite their good intentions, had begun to cause widespread family strife and asked if you could possibly see the entire family. You agreed to provide a session with Elizabeth, Bob, Tim, Linda, Katie, and Geoff.

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