Case 12 Dr. Zack Determined: It Is a Strange World After All

  • Florence W. Kaslow


In this chapter, Dr. Determined summarizes his reflections on how he needed all of his intelligence, resourcefulness, perspicacity, and the support of a dear friend to survive the severe disappointment and disequilibrium he suffered when his wife, the mother of their four children, told him she wanted a divorce and insisted he move out. Her mother had been divorced so this was not atypical behavior in her family, and she assumed her (his wife’s) wealthy mother would continue to help support the lavish lifestyle she had accustomed her to prior to and during her (his wife’s) marriage. She was and wanted to remain a full-time mom and have others make this possible for her. Apparently, she told the children and her attorney many lies about their father and portrayed him as mean and inadequate while trying to diminish his right to any of the marital property. At the time of the separation, his mother was in the throes of dying and he was caught up in additional angst and depression. He assuaged his sorrows in alcohol, spilling over to a bartender and a female friend.

After horrific legal maneuverings, the divorce was finalized and he set up good living quarters so his children could visit, which they did. Subsequently, all four have run into various problems – some needed inpatient substance abuse or psychiatric treatment, but all now seem to be on more solid emotional keel.

Dr. Determined relocated many years ago, built a successful career, and has become a highly respected professional. At the time he was interviewed, he had been sober for 18 years and he and his partner have a warm, open relationship with his children and grandchildren. This story reflects the power of determination, positive thinking, and faithfully adhering to a 12-step program to facilitate healing.


Female Friend Living Quarter Residential Treatment Center Anxiety Disorder Symptom Nervous Breakdown 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Bepko, C., & Kreston, J. A. (1985). The responsibility trap. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  2. Daley, D. C., & Reskin, M. S. (1991). Treating the chemically dependent and their families. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  3. Gold, L. (1992). Between Love and Hate: A Guide to Civilized Divorce. New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
  4. Millon, T., & Everly, G. S. (1985). Personality and its disorders. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  5. Orford, J. (1985). Excessive appetites: A psychological view of addictions. Chichester, England: Wiley.Google Scholar
  6. Simon, F. B., Stierlin, H., & Wynne, L. C. (1985). The language of family therapy: A systemic vocabulary and sourcebook. New York: Family Process Press.Google Scholar
  7. Solomon, M. F. (1989). Narcissism and intimacy. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  8. Windle, M., & Searles, J. S. (Eds.). (1990). Children of alcoholics. New York: Guilford.Google Scholar


  1. Leeson, M. (Writer), & Devito, D. (Director). (1989). The War of the Roses [Motion Picture]. Culver City, CA: Twentieth Century Fox & Gracie Films.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Florence W. Kaslow
    • 1
  1. 1.Kaslow AssociatesPalm Beach GardensUSA

Personalised recommendations