Creating Promising Futures Through Social Construction
Christine Dennstedt, PhD, is a registered clinical counselor living and working in Squamish, BC. She has worked in a variety of settings including as a Family Therapist at Peak House working with young people and assisting them in finding freedom from drugs and alcohol and as a Counselor at Vista, a residential program for women struggling with eating disorders. She also teaches in the Vancouver Community College Counseling Skills program. Christine has facilitated workshops at the Dulwich International Narrative Therapy and Community Work Conference and Therapeutic Conversations Conferences and has also co-published a chapter in the book Therapy from the Outside In.
Christine recently completed her PhD dissertation for the Taos/Tilburg program titled The Interplay of Substance Misuse and Disordered Eating Practices in The Lives of Young Women: Implications for Narrative Therapeutic Practice. Using a narrative approach to therapy, she explores the interplay between these problems, and the ways in which disordered eating practices and substance misuse problems can “feed off of each other,” thereby keeping young women ensnared in their grips. Twelve young women (insiders) who attended a residential substance misuse program were interviewed about their personal experience with substance misuse and disordered eating practices in an attempt to explore and identify ways in which helpers and young women can use these similarities to their advantage. Using case examples from 12 semi-structured interview conversations, she demonstrates the merits of co-research practices, and details the practical and therapeutic applications of a narrative therapeutic approach when working with young women struggling with these problems.