Monday, February 12, 2007

Back In Action

After having taken a break from writing for a time I'm back in the saddle and ready to ride. Still working hard with many clients and even more paperwork. I have several clients who are beginning to improve and some that continue to struggle. The situations that bother me the most are those that are avoidant or resistant. They come in all ages and from all kinds of circumstances. The common characteristics is their resistance to change, or avoidance of addressing the core problems. These clients are simply not ready to be in counseling for themselves. Many times they are being forced by the courts, an upset parent/caregiver, or a loved-one to be in counseling. It goes against their free-will to be here, thus canceling the single greatest power for change--CHOICE. Some parents bring their children in who are acting out behaviorally and say "FIX THEM!" Usually, the problem is not one that can be fixed on an individual basis, but rather a family basis. It is usually the parents with the problem and the children are the symptom. At times it is the parents that are resistant to change, thus the children don't get any better. Or, due to behavioral modeling the children begin to follow in mom and dad's footsteps--forging a path of deviant behaviors. Deviant, meaning that it deviates from the norm and is self-destructive. I'm perplexed at how to address this population, because there are so many. I know that it is not possible to force my will on to them and make them change and see the light, so to speak. How can the avoidant and resistant clients change? With time, hopefully.


Lisa said...

Good question. How to get people to want what will improve their lives. They would have to believe that it really would improve.

PS I didn't miss the comment on the paperwork. :)

aje said...

i think this is one of those things that has to be left up to time.
when i 'had' to be in therapy i don't think i made any progress. not even a little. so i finally stopped going.
a few years later i went back because i wanted to go. just for me, not for anyone else. and since then its been an entirely different experience.
a lot of the advice from when i had to go is the same as when i chose to go. the only difference is that the second time around, i was open to advice.

don't get discouraged.
i ignored a lot of things from my first try with therapy, but when i was ready to change, it was still there.
you're making a difference even if it doesn't feel like it.