WHAT HAPPENS IN THERAPY by Sara Gilbert

WHAT HAPPENS IN THERAPY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

An easygoing introduction to therapy: when you might need or benefit from it, how to find it, and what to expect when you get it. Unlike other, similar books for teens, this does not deal with Freudian theory, nor does it go into the problems behind whatever symptoms or situations landed its five hypothetical cases in therapy. In describing these cases, Gilbert is mainly interested in illustrating the various kinds of therapy and how different cases benefit from different approaches. For most, she describes the opening session, explaining why the therapist says this or that, and generally making the encounter seem painless. She warns, though, that therapy can become uncomfortable when sessions start uncovering material the patient prefers to suppress; and she emphasizes that unlike ""body doctors,"" therapists aim not for a ""cure"" but for understanding and consequent relief or behavior change. Presented in scenarios are insight therapy, administered by a psychiatrist to Peter who is acting out, in trouble with the law, and needs to see how his behavior relates to his feelings; behavior therapy, suitable for insecure Janet who's been feeling generally miserable and needs support and guidance more than analysis; and family therapy for Alec, whose ""explosions"" make him the scapegoat in a troubled family where everyone needs help, There are two kinds of crisis intervention: one an external crisis when 13-year-old Teresa, troubled by a grandparent's death and her parents' divorce, is referred for six counseling sessions and then to a ""divorced kids"" group; the other, more serious, a psychotic episode that requires hospitalization. As usual with Gilbert's advice books, the overall tone is reassuring--geared to making kids feel comfortable with the idea of getting help.

Pub Date: Sept. 13th, 1982
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard