My watch list  

Group Psychotherapy

Group Psychotherapy is a form of psychotherapy during which one or several therapists treat a small group of clients together as a group. This may be more cost effective than individual therapy, and possibly even more productive. Group therapy often consists of "talk" therapy, but may also include other therapeutic forms than such as expressive therapy, psychodrama, and even non-"talk" types of therapy, such as the TaKeTiNa Rhythm Process.

Quoted with permission is the report of one client:

What I got out of group therapy: I was treated with respect, listened to, not judged. I was able to say in "public" what my symptoms were and how I felt. I met other people who had what I had which relieved the feeling of isolation. I learned from the other members of the group what worked for them and copied the skills that worked for me. I got encouragement from the others when I wanted to die. I got compliments when I did well or said something they liked. I had a chance to give and get feedback. I got to hear myself think out loud as I vocally processed what I was dealing with, thus getting it clearer in my own mind.

In group therapy the interactions between the members of the group and the therapists become the material with which the therapy is conducted, alongside past experiences and experiences outside the therapeutic group. These interactions are not necessarily as positive as reported as above, as the problems which the client experiences in daily life will also show up in his or her interactions in the group, allowing them to be worked through in a therapeutic setting, generating experiences which may be translated to "real life." Group therapy is not based on a single psychotherapeutic theory, but takes from many what works.

Some of the many benefits of group therapy:

  • Exploring issues in a social context more accurately reflects real life.
  • Group therapy provides an opportunity to observe and reflect on your own and others' social skills.
  • Group therapy provides an opportunity to benefit both through active participation and through observation.
  • Group therapy offers an opportunity to give and get immediate feedback about concerns, issues and problems affecting one's life.
  • Group therapy members benefit by working through personal issues in a supportive, confidential environment and by helping others to work through theirs.

Important writers and theorists on group psychotherapy have included (but not limited to) S. H. Foulkes, Wilfred Bion, Hyman Spotnitz, Irvin Yalom,and Lou Ormont.

Current Trends in Group Therapy

  • Social Therapy, first developed in the United States in the late 1970's by Lois Holzman and Fred Newman, is a group therapy in which practitioners relate to the group, not its individuals, as the fundamental unit of development. The task of the group is to "build the group" rather than focus on problem solving or "fixing" individuals.

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Group_Psychotherapy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
Your browser is not current. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 does not support some functions on Chemie.DE