Application of neuroscience and interpersonal neurobiology case study

The Case of Susan
Susan was put down by her emotionally-distant mother her whole life. She reports that she was a poor student and was always getting in trouble for not paying attention. When she was 14, her father, who was the one who helped her most with homework, died suddenly of a heart attack. As an adult, Susan (she is 58 years old) suffers from low self-esteem, and high anxiety when she is around people, though she desperately wants friends. She over-functions in the few relationships that she has and is often hurt and disappointed in her relationships. Physically she is overweight and lethargic. She often stays in the house and gets little exercise. She has come to counseling because she is depressed and says that nothing matters anymore. She says that she believes in God, but he doesn’t seem to care either.

Analyze Susan’s experience from a neurological, social, physical, and spiritual perspective.

• What is happening (or not happening) in her brain and embodied mind? (Be very thorough here, incorporating as much neuroscience information that applies…show me what you learned!).
• What would be some treatment goals for her care?
• What interventions might you suggest?
• Are there ways that Susan might trigger unpleasant feelings in you?
• How might you apply IPNB understanding and skills to help you stay mindful?