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Topic Yalom's Curative Factors and MyParkinsons.org Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By Pick On 2009.10.26 18:52
With all the discussion related to the nature of the contributions here, I found this really interesting and thought you guys might find it interesting too. Irvin Yalom, a psychotherapist and professor at Stanford, has identified 11 therapeutic benefits of group membership. His model has made a big impact on the field of group therapy and support groups like AA. I thought it was fun to go down the list and see how many examples I could identify among our contributions to what for me at least has become an online support group.

1. Altruism (Giving appropriate help to other members)

2. Cohesiveness (Feeling connected to other members and belonging to the group)

3. Interpersonal learning (Learning from other members)

4. Guidance (Receiving help, information and advice)

5. Catharsis (Releasing feelings and emotions)

6. Identification (Modeling after member or leader)

7. Family reenactment (Testing new behaviors in a safe environment)

8. Self-understanding (Gaining personal insights)

9. Instillation of hope (Feeling hopeful about one's life)

10. Universality (Feeling that one is not alone)

11. Existential factors (Coming to understand what life is about)

Whaddya think? Cool? Not so much? :D

By annwood On 2009.10.26 21:20
Thanks, Pick
This is quite helpful. I think as a group we cover most of these. We probably fall short on Installation of Hope but with this disease that can take many forms. Hope that the medicine will continue working, hope that dementia won't be a factor, hope that the loved one doesn't suffer anymore than necessary and hope that as a aregiver we will remain heathly and strong.

By mylove On 2009.10.26 21:52
I don't know. I live for #9. :)

By Emma On 2009.10.27 05:58
I like this. I agree that this forum is a support group, and it's one that we can "attend" in our own time and on our own terms. Like annwood, I get up in the middle of the night sometimes and read and post. Can't do that with a regular support group!

Hope has been elusive but it's there, albeit in a different way than I used to think about it and in a different way for all of us. For mylove, I'm glad you are still with us and haven't been scared off. No one knows what the future will bring and your future may be very different than many of ours. I hope so. And I'm glad that you can go forward with a positive attitude, yet armed with information. A couple of years into my husbands disease I went to a therapist who asked me how I envisioned my own future after Parkinson's. I told him that I didn't have a future. I don't feel that way anymore (partly because of this forum). Before this disease my hopes were for a good retirement with my husband, doing things we loved, enjoying our family and the fruits of our labor. Now my hope is that he will not suffer long in the end stages of this disease, that he will be able to find enjoyment in life for a while yet and that when the end comes it will be a good death. I used to think that it was selfish and cruel to imagine, and yes, sometimes even hope for a life for myself after this disease. I don't think that anymore. Again, this forum has helped me with that. Parkinson's has come into our lives and it has changed everything. I'm glad that all of you, my support group, are here. Thank you.

By caregivermary On 2009.10.27 11:13
I too like this. Good representation of what this forum is doing for me. Thanks!


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