Assessment in Psychotherapy by Judy Cooper, Helen Alfillé

By Judy Cooper, Helen Alfillé

Addresses the complexities of psychoanalytic evaluate. contains a entire evaluation of suitable literature and contributions from numerous psychotherapists at the diversified features of the overview method.

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There is also the danger of reducing physical symptoms to somatic causation in a way that underestimates their significance. To look at another area, much ill health in a community is caused by infection; this has always been the case, and many illnesses thrive in overcrowded conditions, particularly amongst the young and the old. The very varied symptoms, which may not seem to be connected, are often rather trivialized or dismissed. We only have to think back a hundred years to remind ourselves how many children died and how much shorter was the average lifespan.

Klauber ( 1971), in pointing out the tremendous responsibility in recommending someone for an analytic treatment, indicates one hazard: an underlying conflict of value systems between patient and analyst may cause a permanent discontent which the patient is unable to articulate and which may force 35 him to make painful psychic adjustments that can only gradually be thrown off after the analysis is ended. [p. 142 ] Coltart ( 1987) tries to match the patient with a therapist, being aware of colleagues' capabilities and special talents, believing as she does in the process of matching, since some therapists have gifts for some sorts of patients and others for others.

If he is unable to consider that there may be any links between the past and present, his capacity to benefit from insight offered, or to use the transference, may be impossibly limited. Although necessary for diagnosis, questions that call for factual answers may be counterproductive if what we are seeking is understanding of how a patient thinks, his capacity for free association, and his ability to differentiate inner from outer reality. One of the most difficult aspects of assessment is the necessity to combine some questioning with giving the patient the space, time, and opportunity to talk about his inner world and thus to experience the way psychoanalytic psychotherapy works.

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