Behavioral Cognition

B.B. is 17 year old senior in high school and is the son of Benny and Rebecca. He was loved by his mother, but hated by his alcoholic father, who was extremely jealous of B.B.’s relationship with his mother. As a youth, B.B. was extremely bright, and could deduct algebra problems at the age of 6, geometry at 7, physics at age 8, and so on. Benny, a former atomic physicist, had the idiosyncratic belief that his son’s intelligence was a mutation derived from his exposure to radiation when he was working as a physicist. Thus, his genotype was “transformed”. Benny tried to sue his company, but the lawsuit was thrown out, due to being deemed frivolous. Benny murdered his wife when she attempted to leave with B.B. He was convicted and sentenced to 10 years for involuntary manslaughter. It was later dismissed due to him being analyzed by a team of counselors. The counselors deemed he was not mentally able to be in a prison, and was sent to a mental hospital. After the murder, B.B. was raised by his aunt and later attended a prestigious school for academically gifted children. B.B. had an immense hatred for his father, but diverted his anger into his study of science. B.B. is a highly withdrawn intellectual unable to cope with emotions. Although he states he detests his father, he wants to obtaining a doctorate in physics, just like him. Right after receiving an admittance letter into a prestigious university, B.B.’s father was released from the mental hospital. This release would lead up to the last confrontation between B.B. and his father at his mother’s grave. Benny accused B.B. of being evil and a monster that was a threat to everyone around him. Years of frustration had built up. Here at his mother’s gravesite his father was coming at him again physically striking him again as well as verbally abusing him. Frustrated, B.B. knocked Benny backwards into his mother’s headstone. Benny died due to this encounter. B.B. was acquitted of any wrongdoing, and continued to prep for graduating and attending college. B.B. states he has “fallen in love” with a girl at his school. However, her father, a military man, looks at B.B. as a weak young man, and has told that to B.B. in his face. The girl’s father is not pleased with B.B.’s relationship with his daughter. B.B. has stated that the girl’s father sometimes reminds him of somebody he would rather forget. At his core, B.B. is intellectually gifted but emotionally withdrawn. B.B. describes himself as “living in a constant state of panic, always wary that something inside him will erupt, and therefore he can’t form meaningful bonds with anyone”. B.B. feels as if he cannot control his emotions, such as rage and fear. Resultingly, B.B. tries not to show his emotions, but he expresses his love for the girl at his school immensely. He has also shown to be very capable in solving problems posed to him.B.B. comes to you, his counselor (i.e., school, mental health school psychologist), as a last ditch effort, to, in his words, “Make himself better”. How would you work with B.B.? (1). Think of the case scenario as an actual client who walks into your office needing help. Make sure the theory you choose: (1) Makes sense to you, and (2) is clear on how it would be applied to the client’s presenting problems and issues. Things to Consider (these are suggestions, students can think and utilize much more as needed)(1) Using your theory of choice, how would you predict the client might act in regards to your theory (i.e. his reaction). For example, some theories are cognitive based in nature, as others are emotional, or history focused. Would you predict this client would respond better (or worse) to your choice of theory?(2) Are there any behaviors, cognitions, history (both medical, social and psychological) and environmental concerns/factors that are related to the major problem that your theory of choice can explain?(3) What techniques or strategies in your theory of choice may be appropriate to use with the client?(4) Describe the relationship you may have with your client using your theory of choice (i.e. collaborative, person-centered, etc.).(5) Are there any multicultural concerns using your theory of choice with the client? Does your worldview potentially enhance or take away from the relationship with the client? Do you perceive obstacles working with this particular client with your theory?(6) What assessments would you utilize?(7) Does B.B. require a diagnosis? If so, what would it be?(8) Do you believe B.B. attained all his developmental milestones growing up?

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