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8. מאמר
Shifting Perspectives

Structures and Mechanisms of Parental Behaviour


Since Freud (1905) first defined psychotherapeutic practice, it has been extensively discussed and documented in a vast number of ways. Over the years, psychotherapy has developed as a field of practice and research and these developments have produced more than four-hundred published approaches. However, it remains mainly an individual process which, in almost all approaches, is an intervention intended to promote the quality of the mental health of an individual patient in various ways. Working with children and adolescents differs in many ways to therapy for individual adults. In order to contextualize their wellbeing, therapy for this young population requires an understanding of their habitat and the socio-cultural environment in which their development is occurring. According to Brown (2000 the individual grows within a social system which influences his development and self-concept, and therefore his family and especially his parents are the most meaningful agents of his development. When I began my practice, I worked with children in their natural environment, utilizing the Reaching out method and including work with parents as part of my systemic approach. I soon identified that when parents undergo transformation during the process, their children quickly respond to that change. The change in the children's behavior and well-being was quicker and more efficient than when I worked mainly with the children directly. Thus, I concluded that the parents' involvement in the process was the most significant factor that influenced change. Moreover, working with parents promoted the well-being of all the family members, each of whom reported better Communication and more effective relationships within the family system [1,2].

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