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Atlanta University (AU)


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This study was designed to determine (1) if a correlation existed between the clients' perceptions of their early relationships with their parents and their current tendencies toward alcohol abuse, and (2) the effects, if any, of a psycho-educational treatment approach on the clients' alcoholic behaviors.


The design used in this study was a pretest/posttest control group design. The pretest/posttest instruments consisted of the LIPHE, COPE, ALCADD and counselors checklists which were administered in group form to both the experimental and control clients.

The study compared two randomly formed treatment groups. The experimental group was exposed to weekly psycho-educational group experiences while the control group was provided basic therapy experiences. The groups were com posed of sixteen male clients enrolled in a public alcoholism center.


1. There was no relationship between the child of the alcoholic's perception of his parent(s) behavior or feeling and his own alcoholic behavior.

2. Significant reduction in the alcoholic's preference for the use of denial as a coping mechanism did not necessarily result from insight into his own or that of his alcoholic parents behavior.

3. Factors indirectly related to early childhood experiences i.e. personality, individual perception, ability to cope with stress, etc. may be crucial to the development and maintenance of high levels of emotionality and tendency toward alcoholic behaviors in alcoholics.

4. There were no significant improvements in the group's behavior relative to their overall responses to day-to-day life tasks functioning. However, when the groups were compared relative to their actual and expected direction of improvement, task by task, the group exposed to the psycho-educational group experience showed significant improvement on seven of the eight life tasks as compared to two of the eight for the group exposed to a basic therapy experience as observed by the counselors.

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