The Family Is An African American Pair Of Grandparents -ernie And Audrey
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The Anderson family is an African-American pair of grandparents –Ernie and Audrey—raising their daughter’s three children. Their daughter and her husband were killed in a car accident recently; however, the grandchildren had been living with the grandparents before this untimely tragedy due to financial hardships experienced by the family. There are three children, two of which appear to be adjusting well, and have supports in place. The main concern of Ernie and Audrey surround their 3-month old granddaughter, Artesia. Artesia was born with an extremely low birth weight, and has faced other health problems since delivery. While Artesia’s mother was pregnant with her, it was reported that they had been living in a car. Artesia’s mother did not receive proper medical care, as well as engaged in proper self-care, during the pregnancy due to her financial situation. She was also plagued with high maternal stress due to the circumstances (Laureate Education, Inc., 2013).
While it is not clear from the case study if Artesia’s mother was clinically depressed, there were certainly situational factors that led to high stress. Homelessness, financial insecurity, and raising two children (one being on the autism spectrum) would have created an extremely high stress environment for Artesia’s mother during her pregnancy. DiPietro (as cited in Broderick & Blewitt, 2015) stated, “during pregnancy, high levels of maternal stress hormones can pass through the placenta to calibrate the child’s developing stress systems in harmful ways,” (p. 70). Van Izjendoorn, Bakermans-Kranenbug, and Ebstein (as cited in Broderick & Blewitt, 2015) added, “From an epigenetic perspective, divisions between genes, brain and be...
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...posed to so much stress during the pregnancy, as well as immediately after, a relaxed environment would benefit her greatly.
One Challenge a Counselor May Experience
A counselor working with a strongly religious family may experience some challenges regarding intervention strategies. Brody, Stoneman, & Flor (1996) stated, “Religiosity may also influence judgmental processes through attributional means. Religious adults and children may be more inclined to attribute family members ' conflictual behavior to situational rather than personal characteristics,” (p. 704). In the case of Artesia and her family, there may be a rationalization made that the developmental issues Artesia is facing is completely situational, as opposed to biological and physical. Certain needs or intervention strategies may be dismissed as unnecessary now that the children are in a stable home.