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Approach: Feminist therapy

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Feminist therapy is a set of related therapies arising from the disparity between the origin of most psychological theories and the majority of people seeking counseling being female. It focuses on societal, cultural, and political causes and solutions to issues faced in the counseling process. It openly encourages the client to participate in the world in a more social and political way.

Feminist therapy recognizes that women are in a disadvantaged position in the world due to sex, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, religion, age and other categories[1] Feminist therapists recognize that many problems that arise in therapy are due to disempowering social forces, thus the goal of therapy is to recognize these forces and empower the client[2]In a feminist therapy setting the therapist and client work as equals. The therapist must demystify therapy from the beginning to show the client that she is her own rescuer and the expectations, roles and responsibilities of both client and therapist must be explored and equally agreed upon.[3]The therapist recognizes that with every symptom a client has, there is a strength.[4]

Feminist therapy grew out of concerns that the way traditional therapy addressed women and their problems were not working. Some concerns included gender bias and stereotyping in therapy; blaming victims of physical and sexual abuse; the assumption of a traditional nuclear family; and the ongoing erasure of women from the psychological discourse among other things.[5]


Principles of Feminist Therapy Edit

1) Egalitarian relationships (a relationship which is based on equals) between therapist and client are key in therapy, utilizing the therapist’s psychological knowledge and the client’s knowledge of herself. The inherent power differentials between therapist and client are addressed, and the client must realize that the therapist is not giving her power, but power comes from within herself. This relationship provides a model for women to take responsibility in making all of their relationships egalitarian.Feminist therapists focus on embracing the client’s strengths rather than fixing their weaknesses and accept and validate the client’s feelings.[6]

2) Feminist Therapy Theory is always being revised and added to as social contexts change and the discourse develops. The client’s well-being is the leading principle in all aspects of therapy.[7]

3) The therapist always retains accountability.[8]

4) The feminist therapy model is non-victim blaming.[9]

5) The client’s well-being is the leading principle in all aspects of therapy.[10]

Feminist Therapists ResponsibilitiesEdit

1) Feminist Therapists must integrate feminist analysis in all spheres of their work.[11]

2) Feminist Therapists must recognize the client’s socioeconomic and political circumstances, especially with issues in access to mental health care.[12]

3) Feminist therapists must be actively involved in ending oppression, empowering women and girls, respecting differences, and social change.[13]

4) Feminist Therapists must be aware of their own situated experience (their own socioeconomic and political situations as well as sex, gender, race, sexuality, etc.) and is constantly self-evaluating and remedying their own biases and oppressive actions. As well as must be learning about other dominant and non-dominant cultural and ethnic experiences.[14]

5) A feminist therapist must accept and validate their client’s experiences and feelings.[15]

Contributors to Feminist TherapyEdit


See alsoEdit

References & BibliographyEdit

Key textsEdit

BooksEdit

PapersEdit

  1. Rowan, John. "AHP A Guids to Humanistic Psychology." 2001. Association for Humanistic Psychology. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.ahpweb.org/rowan_bibliography/chapter16.html>.
  2. Rowan, John. "AHP A Guids to Humanistic Psychology." 2001. Association for Humanistic Psychology. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.ahpweb.org/rowan_bibliography/chapter16.html>.
  3. Byram Fowles, Tammie. "Contributions to Feminist Therapy." Psych-Net- UK. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.psychnet-uk.com/readers_articles/contributions%20of%20feminist%20theory.htm>.
  4. Walker, Lenore. “A Feminist Therapist Reviews the Case.” Women As Therapists. Cantor, Dorothy. 1990. as cited in Byram Fowles, Tammie. "Contributions to Feminist Therapy." Psych-Net- UK. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.psychnet-uk.com/readers_articles/contributions%20of%20feminist%20theory.htm>.
  5. "Foundations of Feminist Therapy." 25 Nov. 2008 <http://media.wiley.com/product_data/excerpt/69/04713743/0471374369.pdf>.
  6. Walker, Lenore. “A Feminist Therapist Reviews the Case.” Women As Therapists. Cantor, Dorothy. 1990. as cited in Byram Fowles, Tammie. "Contributions to Feminist Therapy." Psych-Net- UK. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.psychnet-uk.com/readers_articles/contributions%20of%20feminist%20theory.htm>.
  7. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  8. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  9. Walker, Lenore. “A Feminist Therapist Reviews the Case.” Women As Therapists. Cantor, Dorothy. 1990. as cited in Byram Fowles, Tammie. "Contributions to Feminist Therapy." Psych-Net- UK. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.psychnet-uk.com/readers_articles/contributions%20of%20feminist%20theory.htm>.
  10. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  11. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  12. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  13. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  14. "Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics." Feminist Therapy Institute: Feminist Therapy Code of Ethics. 1999. Feminist Therapy Institute. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.feminist-therapy-institute.org/ethics.htm>.
  15. Walker, Lenore. “A Feminist Therapist Reviews the Case.” Women As Therapists. Cantor, Dorothy. 1990. as cited in Byram Fowles, Tammie. "Contributions to Feminist Therapy." Psych-Net- UK. 25 Nov. 2008 <http://www.psychnet-uk.com/readers_articles/contributions%20of%20feminist%20theory.htm>.
  16. [1] official website.
  17. Laura Brown official website.
  18. Jean Baker Miller on Wellesley College.
  19. Carolyn Enns on Cornell College.
  20. Ellyn Kaschak official website.
  21. Bonnie Burstow on Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

Additional materialEdit

BooksEdit

PapersEdit

External linksEdit


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