Application of Clinical Psychology Jennifer Simpson Psy-480 March 4, 2013 Application of Clinical Psychology Introduction Winona Ryder is famous for more than the movies that she starred in over the years. News reporters gathered to gain more information in regards to this famous actress gone astray. In 2001 Ryder made the news for something that was not entertaining but gained quite a bit of public knowledge. The actual incident was only part of the information that the public was curious about.
The treatment and the reasoning for the off behavior were desired in order to better understand the issue that had haunted Ryder. Ryder is known as a kleptomaniac and her struggle became public after she was arrested for the theft of thousands of dollars in merchandise from Saks Fifth Avenue. Brief Overview: Wynona Ryder Arrested in 2001 and charged with grand theft and burglary, Winona Ryder reportedly has had previous shoplifting accounts as well (Meyer, Chapman, & Weaver, 2009). Her tumultuous childhood experiences (bullied for her appearance) accompanied with hippie-like parents caused Winona tremendous unease.
According to Meyer, Chapman, and Weaver (2009); “Eventually, her parents removed her from public school and home schooled her until she graduated” (p. 239). After moving to Petaluma, California, at age 10, Winona “enrolled in acting classes at the American Conservatory Theater” (Lee, 2011, para 2). Winona’s extreme childhood experiences may have led her to develop interpersonally generated anxiety (Meyer, Chapman, & Weaver, 2009). As an adult, she experiences occasional panic attacks, insomnia, physical exhaustion, and stress from negative media attention.
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These cumulative issues accompanied with her relationship break with Johnny Depp caused her to check herself into a psychiatric clinic for treatment. Because of her psychological distress, her psychiatrist prescribed her sleeping pills. Winona allegedly became reliant on pain medication as well (Meyer, Chapman, & Weaver, 2009). Kleptomania often accompanies other psychological disorders, including anxiety, irrational impulse control, and depression (Labi & McDowell, 2002). Winona could easily afford to purchase everything she stole.
According to Labi and McDowell (2002); “Experts today are more inclined to compare recreational larceny to thrill-seeking behaviors like bungee jumping or to addictions like drug abuse or compulsive gambling” (para 4). Stealing behaviors and the (pleasure) rush associated with getting-away-with-it often become addictive. In addition, the stealing behavior often becomes a reward that some individuals believe they deserve (Labi & McDowell, 2002). Biological, Psychological, and Social Factors: Wynona Ryder/Kleptomania As with many disorders, there are certain factors that play important roles in the development of kleptomania.
Studies have shown that although more research is needed to prove biological factors are connected with kleptomania, this impulsive disease has been proven to be more common in females than in males and may be connected to low levels of serotonin in the brain which affect mood and emotion regulation. Psychological factors involved in the case of Wynona Ryder and her kleptomania seem to be more of the key components than any other factors. Stress related instances that occur abruptly and conflicts in relationships both are connected to kleptomania and to Ryder.
The multiple moves in her childhood and the negative relationships with the other children in school, along with her failed relationship with Johnny Depp are some examples of what could have aided in the development of the impulsive disorder for Ryder. Her admitted bouts with anxiety and depression are also psychological factors that have been proven to connect with kleptomania since Ryder clearly could pay for the items she stole, it would be fair to say that her actions were more for anti-depressive purposes rather than monetary or usefulness.
Substance abuse was discovered in Ryder’s life and has also been proven to be connected to impulsive disorders, especially, but not limited to kleptomania. Other factors that have been connected with kleptomania are social factors such as social phobia, but with Ryder starring in many big deal movies, and some not so big deal, social phobia does not seem to be an issue for her. However, if one goes back to Ryder’s childhood and the bullying she suffered at the hands of her peers during such a vulnerable time in her life, kleptomania ust may be the way that she deals with a fear of social connections or relationships – a way for Ryder to cope with the emotional scars she may carry from her childhood. Clinical Psychology Interventions: Kleptomania The therapy offered to the client with Kleptomania is the cognitive-behavioral therapy. The behavioral and substance addictions are similar to Kleptomania. Choosing the cognitive-behavioral therapy comes from a convincing validation of the research into Kleptomania as a behavioral addiction (Grant, 2006).
The therapy would attempt to alter the clients’ unwanted behaviors and thoughts through the cognitive restructuring and behavioral therapy to the thoughts and behaviors wanted for the individual. This type of therapy can assist in the replacing of the individual’s impulse to steal with the feelings of relaxation as in the Systematic Desensitization model of the cognitive-behavioral approach. The systematic desensitization therapy that replaces the urge to steal with relaxation feelings could also assist in treating the client’s symptoms of anxiety (Grant, 2006). The setting for this intervention is the clinical office of the therapist.
This is so that the clients who could be ashamed or embarrassed about their issue can speak openly and freely with the professionals. These meetings should include the client, the therapist, and the professional who prescribes the clients antianxiety and antidepressant medications. Under the circumstances of some disorders that require medication, collaborations between the client and the professionals involved is essential for the clients proper treatment. The areas targeted by this therapy will assist the individual’s maladaptive ways of thinking and problematic behaviors.
A cognitive-behavioral approach to the client’s treatment can help to provide the client with new and different coping skills to deal effectively with the impulse to steal, and the anxiety issues of the client. Conclusion Individuals that are affected by kleptomania do not all have the same background or even share the same daily struggles. These individuals walk different paths and struggle with many different types of kleptomania from gambling to stealing. Any one issue that takes away from an individual’s ability to better focus by needing the rush that comes with accomplishing he unnecessary task becomes a sign of kleptomania. Assisting individuals with the proper treatment at an early stage will allow the professionals to help them conquer the problems with which they struggle. These individuals need to be given the proper coping tools to refuse the anxiety and depression that lead them to perform such unwanted tasks. Once a patient has accomplished these coping skills, they will gain self confidence in their daily struggles and know that they can and will succeed. Reference Grant, J. E. (2006). Understanding and Treating Kleptomania: New Models and New Treatments.
The Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences, 43(2), 81-87. Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/docview/236926707? Labi, N. , & McDowell, J. (2002). Why Did She Do It?. Time, 160(21), 69. Retrieved from http://web. ebscohost. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/ehost Lee, K. (2012). Biography for Winona Ryder. Internet Movie Database (IMDB). Retrieved from http://www. imdb. com/name/nm0000213/bio Meyer, R. G. , Chapman, L. K. , & Weaver, C. M. (2009). Case studies in abnormal behavior (8th ed. ). Boston, MA: Pearson Education/Allyn & Bacon.