What is Harm Reduction? Meet Dee-Dee Stout - Cathy Taughinbaugh

What’s Hurt Discount? Meet Dee-Dee Stout – Cathy Taughinbaugh


Have you ever heard the time period hurt discount however are uncertain what it means?

Would you want extra data on the strategy?

I’m excited to share my interview with Dee-Dee-Stout at the moment!

Dee-Dee has a Grasp’s in well being counseling and has been a substance use counselor for almost thirty-five years. In at the moment’s interview, Dee-Dee discusses hurt discount and the way the strategy may also help households. You possibly can learn a number of the highlights from the video as effectively beneath.

Watch the video right here:

Are you able to outline hurt discount and what the time period means for individuals who aren’t accustomed to it?

  • Hurt discount is something that reduces or minimizes the hurt, the unfavorable penalties. On this case, it will be round substance use.
  • We use hurt discount methods in all the opposite areas of our lives. Take into consideration vehicles. You recognize, extra folks die in automotive accidents than absolutely anything. Not proper now due to COVID, however historically that’s been an space the place, significantly, many younger folks get injured or die, sadly. And but, we don’t outlaw vehicles. That may be insane. We work to make vehicles safer, whereas we admire that they’re killing machines.
  • With substance use, all the pieces suits below the umbrella of hurt discount. One other factor that’s an enormous fantasy in hurt discount or substance use remedy is that someway abstinence isn’t in there. As a result of clearly, abstinence can’t be, not for everybody, however for many individuals, that’s the final hurt discount. So, after all, it suits in there.
  • It’s simply that we’re not saying you have to be abstinent. That’s not our job. It’s definitely my job as a hurt discount counselor to carry that choice up.
  • Hurt discount is a technique you would possibly change your relationship with substances and maybe enhance your life in some methods. And we are able to discuss steps you would possibly use to get there, however I don’t know, that is your life. You inform me what you’d be considering doing.
  • So, many individuals come to me and say I don’t know that I’m prepared to present all of it up. Is there a method I can use it safely? And I at all times say, I don’t know, I don’t have some magic ball right here that I can have a look at and prognosticate what’s going to occur sooner or later. However what I can say is whereas many individuals do, nevertheless, it’s going to be as much as you.
  • How are you going to know that it’s working? How are you going to realize it’s not working? That’s what’s necessary to me.

Dad and mom need or are sometimes informed that sobriety is the one approach to change, so what message do you’ve for folks who’re dealing with the unfavorable habits and how you can assist a son or daughter who’s attempting hurt discount?

  • I admire that many individuals, mother and father, companions, need that. We may additionally throw the police in there as a result of that’s a number of the route that, sadly, folks will take. They’ll wind up concerned within the prison justice system. The prison justice system will solely take abstinence as effectively.
  • In terms of folks having boundaries round it, we prefer to say, how would you deal with your little one doing anything that you just’re not comfy with?
  • For us, it’s all about, once more, the connection that the individual has to the substance. If I’m working with the person and the remainder of the household, how are you speaking with that individual to begin with?
  • Usually what I observe is that they’re not, that the remainder of the household is kind of behind closed doorways, attempting to determine what to do with the one who’s utilizing. The substance consumer is type of off right here on the aspect. We discuss in regards to the particular person utilizing substances and the household as two separate entities. I spotted I used to be doing that till lately and thought, how did we get there?
  • Suppose I’m actively and chaotically utilizing a substance. In that case, I’ll not have the wherewithal to have the ability to say to you, mother, I’m in a number of ache proper now, or dad, I used to be sexually assaulted lately, and that’s what’s occurring. So,
  • Sadly, the place mother and father are likely to go when now we have these sorts of conversations is it should be our fault. We’ve carried out one thing to trigger this. I imply, frankly, perhaps you’ve, I don’t know. I imply, none of us know. I do know that your little one lives in a world past simply the household. So, the concept that it may solely occur throughout the household construction is fairly restricted, proper? It’s most likely one thing that’s occurred of their world that you’re unaware of, and I hear many mother and father discuss that.
  • That’s a part of it, however it’s additionally about how we maintain these traces of communication open? So even if you happen to really feel like you’ll be able to’t be round that individual that you just love a lot anymore as a result of you’ll be able to’t watch this, I’m nonetheless going to advocate for a way do you retain these traces of communication open and at just about any value you wish to maintain that line open.
  • As a result of if you’re not doing that, and the one you love feels alone and ashamed, I can assure they’re not going to cease. I can nearly assure the one you love goes to make use of extra as a result of that’s a part of the explanation we’re utilizing substances within the first place.
  • Now I believe too many individuals assume, oh, folks use substances for the euphoria. They wish to get excessive. They’re irresponsible, and perhaps at first, positive. However not in the event that they’re caught in that way of life. And if this can be a habits that has turn out to be entrenched, it has nothing to do with that anymore. I can assure that.
  • And might I say one thing to that about kicking your child out? I like to inform people that’s completely an choice? Proper? And you’ll solely do it as soon as. To start with, if you happen to say that, you have to comply with via as a result of if you happen to inform me you’re going to throw me out, and you then backtrack each time you say it, I’m not going to imagine it anymore. That’s not useful.
  • And second of all, you’ll be able to solely try this one time, proper. That’s, it’s like, , within the outdated card video games, that’s my trump card. I can solely play that when. So save that for the very last thing you do. Don’t let that be the very first thing you do. There are many different choices earlier than you get to that time. That’s in your bag of tips, however let’s see if we are able to attempt another issues first. They don’t wish to try this. They don’t know another technique.
  • I do the identical factor round alcohol or different medicine. Begin writing down all of the instances you’re utilizing or use an app for that. And let’s see if you find yourself consuming or utilizing different medicine and the way come. What are the consequences? Merely doing that, imagine it or not, can reduce folks’s drug use.

harm reduction

Do you’ve a case research of somebody who makes use of hurt discount and the way it affected the household, what boundaries they arrange, or the way it labored?

  • One of many issues I like about hurt discount is that it’s not a one-size-fits-all. In doing hurt discount remedy, we’ll ask folks to be abstinent for a time period. We name it sobriety sampling.
  • Take a look at this like a funds, a monetary funds. If you happen to’re going to have a look at a monetary funds, how are you aware how you can funds if you happen to don’t know what you’re spending? Proper? So I would like you to write down all the pieces down, however I would like you to try this with out judgment in order that we are able to get a baseline of the place you might be.
  • The dialog is at all times in regards to the relationship, which confuses folks. Once I describe to them, “We’re going to have a look at your relationship to medicine,” they’ll at all times say, “I don’t have a relationship with medicine.” That’s a part of what we wish to have a look at and see. What does it value you? What are these unfavorable penalties, but in addition what are the positives? Since you should be getting one thing constructive from that habits.
  • So we wish to train mother and father to say issues like, , I like it while you’re not below the affect, , utilizing meth, and we’re in a position to exit and have dinner collectively. These are actually particular instances that all of us stay up for now.
  • And if that’s your settlement that they’re not going to be below the affect while you get collectively, that’s a reasonably typical one. Then you’ll be able to say to the one you love, gosh, it’s too dangerous. We are able to inform you need to’ve had a tough day at the moment. Our settlement is that we solely get collectively and exit while you’re not below the affect. It’s okay. Let’s provide you with a experience again.
  • You will have heard of a analysis idea known as contingency administration. And primarily, what it means is rewarding constructive habits. We don’t use it in remedy on this nation, though it’s extraordinarily efficient.
  • Watch the video to listen to a gorgeous piece by Gabor Maté. It sums up properly how we are able to discuss to folks we love who’re utilizing substances problematically.
  • Put in your oxygen masks. That’s so necessary to take that breath or a number of breaths. Nothing must occur proper this second. It’s important to imagine you can take that point, no less than a couple of minutes, it doesn’t matter what the disaster is.

Two extra assets for folks from Dee-Dee:

The e book is free. It’s nonjudgmental and excellent for speaking to children about drug use. The e book can be obtainable in Spanish!


Dee-Dee Stout has labored in behavioral well being for greater than 30 years, and she or he relates her personal private story of dependancy, different psychiatric diagnoses, and continual ache to all conversations. Dee-Dee has been interviewed on tv, radio, movie, and print, discussing remedy points, coverage, and extra. She has a personal apply for people and households. She is an adjunct professor for the graduate division of Forensic and Counseling Psychology for Holy Names College in Oakland, CA. She is a frequent coach throughout the nation in evidence-based practices. Her e book, “Coming to Hurt Discount Kicking and Screaming:  Searching for Hurt Discount in a 12-Step World,” is the idea for at the moment’s dialog.



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