House of Cards

  1. My mom had asked me this but I honestly could not answer. On the show House of Cards, one of the characters who is a recovering alcoholic uses a syringe to draw up alcohol and sprays it into his mouth, not injects it. He uses a clean needle every time. What would be the rationale for that? Just curious.
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   Rose_Queen
    It's in the script. Seriously, these shows have zero basis in reality, especially when it comes to nursing/medicine/health care.
  4. by   JoseQuinones
    The character is Doug and he is an alcoholic who has been clean for many years (as shown in seasons 1 and 2). But the crisis with Sarah as well as his traumatic brain injury and subsequent distancing from his idol Frank Underwood causes him to be teetering on the edge of alcoholism again. In earlier episodes we saw that for Doug, the only thing more terrifying to him than alcohol is using needle drugs. So he puts thing he craves - alcohol - into the thing he fears - the needle - to try to keep himself from going in too deep. As long as Doug is squirting tiny amounts of alcohol into his mouth, he feels, he's still in control. The psychological term for this is is "flooding." In controlled clinical settings, it can work very well. For Doug trying to make it work on his own, it's not such a hot idea. Poor Doug spirals right back into drinking binges.

    In this way, it is fantastic writing and shows the screenwriters understand addictive behaviors very well. One wonders if any of them are writing from experience.
    Last edit by JoseQuinones on Mar 15, '15 : Reason: clarification
  5. by   subee
    As someone who has worked with addicted CRNA's, Doug's behavior is so spot on. People educated in the medical fields are EXPERTS in rationalization and often delay treatment because this is something they believe they can keep under control because they are just so smart. Smart, educated people make just as many dumb choices as everyone else in the general population when they are under the influence of drugs, adrenaline and stress.
  6. by   bear14
    Thank you all so much for answering this question. I know it is not work or school related but I appreciate that you took the time to answer.
  7. by   NutmeggeRN
    Quote from Rose_Queen
    It's in the script. Seriously, these shows have zero basis in reality, especially when it comes to nursing/medicine/health care.
    Ya...but the politics....too real for me!
  8. by   LargeMarge
    Thanks for explaining this, I saw that scene when I was very tired and loosely paying attention. I didn't know what the heck he was doing...
  9. by   ~PedsRN~
    Was he drawing up alcohol in that syringe? I had no idea what it was.
  10. by   BabyRN2Be
    Judging only from I've read here and I do very little TV reading, I have to give the writers of this program a lot of kudos for the amount of studying they've done. So many "medical dramas" out there just pull it out of their hat (or worse) strictly for drama and sensationalism.

    Sounds like they are giving a lot of studying devoted to the subject matter so viewers can get a real life visual into what the addict more-or-less truly goes through in his/her journey on becoming and staying sober.
  11. by   amynye
    Actually it's pretty accurate for an educated addict...
  12. by   Maevish
    Quote from JoseQuinones
    The character is Doug and he is an alcoholic who has been clean for many years (as shown in seasons 1 and 2). But the crisis with Sarah as well as his traumatic brain injury and subsequent distancing from his idol Frank Underwood causes him to be teetering on the edge of alcoholism again. In earlier episodes we saw that for Doug, the only thing more terrifying to him than alcohol is using needle drugs. So he puts thing he craves - alcohol - into the thing he fears - the needle - to try to keep himself from going in too deep. As long as Doug is squirting tiny amounts of alcohol into his mouth, he feels, he's still in control. The psychological term for this is is "flooding." In controlled clinical settings, it can work very well. For Doug trying to make it work on his own, it's not such a hot idea. Poor Doug spirals right back into drinking binges.

    In this way, it is fantastic writing and shows the screenwriters understand addictive behaviors very well. One wonders if any of them are writing from experience.

    Exactly, plus those types of sneaky, underhanded things (including the drugs/alcohol) occur in real life. It's too "icky" for some to believe, but it does.

    xo

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