Parallel process is a clinical term used to describe the common occurrence in therapy when the therapist’s own experience is reflected in the client’s. It is when a client comes in grieving over the loss of a loved one while the therapist has only just experienced his or her own loss as well. It is a therapist helping a client through feelings of anger and hurt that the therapist has also just recently confronted.
Therapy is way more than a toolbox of intervention. Information alone cannot replace professional help. However, information can be very powerful. So, for what it’s worth to you, here is the weekly post offering a therapeutic idea, concept, or intervention that you can try out in your own life or relationships.
I met Mike Dyer eleven months ago, which begs the question, Why am I preaching his funeral? That is a question that I intend to answer. And in so doing I hope you will see and hear the message that God is speaking, because our relationship was ordained with a purpose. And I hope you’ll learn a few things about Mike along the way, too.
Sometimes I will use a temperament/personality assessment when I work with an individual or with a couple. The one I use is a very simple instrument that looks at things like depressed mood, anxiety, sympathy or care towards people, passivity and submissiveness or aggressiveness and competition. It looks at impulsivity, how outgoing the person is, as well as how affectionate or expressive. It is meant to be a snapshot of a person on a given day in time…not a means of diagnosis.
I like positive people. Really, I do. I love how they push me to see the silver lining and keep me from slipping into the depths of despair. I love their smiley faces and perky steps. I love their eyebrows, simultaneously raised while nodding me on as I talk. I love them. I admire them. Sometimes I am one of them.