Substance Use Interview

The initial or the first-hand contact between the two the interviewer and the interviewee is basic and simple in nature in order to form a comfortable and easy situation or atmosphere and the interviewee, Gavin can easily and smoothly open up about the issue of substance use (Pere, 2018). In the first interaction, the interviewer greets the interviewee by telling him in basic words to grab his seat and also informs him about the warning health signs and symptoms. The initial contact is made in a way that helps in keeping Gavin in a relaxed position and also ensuring the fact that he can open up about the experiences that he is having regarding substance use disorder (Pere, 2018). No such fast approach is used in the first place and no harsh comments are also made by the interviewer (Pere, 2018). The whole meeting or conversation is kept simple and that gives Gavin a good space to open up. The main purpose of the interview is made clear and the interviewer tells about the signs and symptoms of substance use. 

The interviewer shows every sign of respect and rapport towards Gavin as his sole purpose is to resolve the substance disorder issue through a sustainable way or approach. The interviewer gives enough space to Gavin to tell about his life. He asks a question to him about his course and then very carefully and peacefully listens to all his answers and statements. Gavin tells him that he is into some software project and that is most of the time busy with this project (Wubbolding, 2017). The interviewer does not show any kind of irritation nor does he show any kind of negative vibes while talking with the interviewee. The technique that is used here is very helpful and is such that builds trust and confidence in Gavin and thereby allows him to open up in front of the interviewer with ease. This also shows the kind of building rapport between the two. The interviewer very tactfully uses the acknowledgment technique and this technique can easily provide appreciation and value to the interviewee and thereby a relationship of respect and rapport is also build with the interview (Wubbolding, 2017). Respect is important in this case since this is all about understanding others ideas and thoughts, valuing their statements and experiences, showing concern and others and the use of this approach leads to building good rapport as well. The communication style is not limited to question and answer rather it is more like a conversation between two men and the interviewer gives ample of time to Gavin to narrate his story and his experience and his feelings (Wubbolding, 2017). Gavin tells about his issue of lack of sleep due to his computer project and also tells that this is when he uses the substance. Hearing this interviewer does not show any immediate irritation or harshness towards Gavin rather in a friendly manner tries to hear more from him and this shows the sign of respect and also rapport in the conversation (Wubbolding, 2017). The sign of respect is evident from these kinds of approaches and gestures and the reason behind this is that the interviewer truly respects his idea, his experiences, and his feelings and is not judgmental about it in the first place and this also helped in creating a rapport between the two. 

The interviewer in the process of communicating with Gavin very well understands that he is a simple boy and that there is readiness in him to change. He is easy going, quite flexible and is also having a notion that he is on substance use which is not at all good for his mental and physical health as well (Wubbolding, 2017). The readiness of change in Gavin is also reflected from the fact that he is open about his substance use issue and also that he is open about the types of substance used by him and the number of times he has been on substance. He is quite open in nature and this is one of the main facts that will help him to change (Wubbolding, 2017). The interviewer uses observation technique to perfectly judge Gavin’s nature and idea and it is seen that he himself has a self-recognition that he is using the substance and that is not right for him and thus readiness to change can be easily detected in him. 

The interviewer tries to find out the different types of substances that Gavin uses and with the help of a checklist, he tries to note it down. When the interviewer communicates in details with the interviewee then he comes to know that the type of drugs he is using is very detrimental to his health and his mental condition as well (Chukwu et al., 2017). This kind of substance use can lead to several complications like depression, nervous breakdown, isolation, aggressive attitude and behavior, abusive nature and others however other than this it is also noted that the use of drugs with alcohol can lead to a chronic mental health issue in the interviewee (Chukwu et al., 2017). The sensory organs can also lose its functioning power and at the same time, the nervous tissue and cells can be damaged. The interviewer uses detailed questions to know about the drugs and the trends of taking the drugs and from their access the health impacts in Gavin.  

The impact on substance use in day to day life can be critical. The day to day living and activities of Gavin can also be impacted due to this substance disorder (Chukwu et al., 2017). The impact can lead to societal isolation, the fear of being judged by others in the society, lack of sleep, lack of interest in living and in performing day to day activities, depression, can lead to negative mental condition and others (Chukwu et al., 2017). Besides this, the impact can also include memory loss. 

There are some other stress factors as well in the case and this is known through the conversation and communication process with Gavin (Chukwu et al., 2017). The stressor like to well in the project is always there and besides this, the stress factor like getting acknowledgment, achieving success and also competing with friends are the most important stress factors that are there in case of Gavin (Pere, 2018). He, in fact, says that the computer project on which he is working is quite hard and is quite challenging as well and that is also pushing him to dwell on substance use as he is thinking that substance use can provide some momentary respite to him (Pere, 2018). These are the other stressors that Gavin is experiencing and is impacting him in a severe way. 

Overall engagement level is very positive and high as from the initial point there has been both ways communication and the interviewer tried to engage with the interviewee in every possible way and also tried to do away with his inhabitations and prepared a relaxing and comfortable position for the interviewee (Pere, 2018). A level of rapport is also created and that also talks about the overall engagement with the interviewee from the end of the interviewer (Pere, 2018). The engagement level is active and fruitful as the engagement helps in bringing out some useful information from Gavin. Information about his personal life, his own experience, his tendency to take drugs, his feelings and others are all known through active engagement of the interviewer with the interviewee. 

The interviewer used a note of self-reflection and self-realization while conducting the interview with the interviewee. He concluded the interview with a note of message where he tells that there is a need to do away with this habit of substance use for Gavin and also presents the message of clear vision and better lifestyle for Gavin so that there is no such issue or experience like this that he is facing now (Pere, 2018). The conclusion is made on a positive note as the interviewer shows hope and faith and confidence for Gavin and also cites him the appropriate path towards a better and good lifestyle. The conclusion also brought self-realization on the part of Gavin where he himself identifies and sees that it is due to his added stress that he is using the substance and that he needs to better his life. The interviewer concluded the interview in a positive and healthy note where he shows hope for Gavin and also provides positive vibes in him. 


Chukwu, E. O., Pius, V. T., Fiase, T. M., Haruna, H., & Achukwu, C. E. (2017). Effects of substance/drug abuse on the academic achievement of secondary school students in Mkar metropolis, Gboko, Benue State. Journal of psychological and Brain sciences, 2 (2): 40-45, Doi, 10.

Winters, K. C. (2016). Brief interventions for adolescents. Journal of drug abuse, 2(1).

More, A., Jackson, B., Dimmock, J. A., Thornton, A. L., Colthart, A., & Furzer, B. J. (2018). “It's like a counselling session… but you don't need to say anything:” Exercise program outcomes for youth within a drug and alcohol treatment service. Psychology of Sport and Exercise.

Zuleta-Alarcón, A., Coffman, J. C., Soghomonyan, S., Papadimos, T. J., Bergese, S. D., & Moran, K. R. (2017). Non-opioid anesthetic drug abuse among anesthesia care providers: a narrative review. Canadian Journal of Anesthesia/Journal canadien d'anesthésie, 64(2), 169-184.

Wubbolding, R. (2017). Counselling with reality therapy. Routledge.


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