Feminist therapy is based on a gender-fair, flexible-multicultural, interactionist, and life-span-oriented view of human nature. The traditional androcentric, heterosexist, and deterministic theories are considered to be greatly limited, especially in relation to women and people of other cultures. The views of feminist theory then, are sensitive and flexible enough to be applied to people of any gender, race, age, ability, class, or sexual orientation. Feminist therapists believe that personality differences between men and women are the result of societal gender-role expectations that are in place from birth. Women identify with their mothers and tend to become caretakers, while boys identify with their fathers and learn to put less emphasis on relating to and caring for others.
[...] The major techniques used in feminist therapy are based on helping women differentiate between what society has taught them is acceptable and what is actually healthy for them. To achieve this, women are empowered by the therapist's transparent use of therapy techniques, and being treated as an active partner in the therapy process. Therapists also use self-disclosure to equalize the relationship and enhance the therapist's presence in the sessions. The therapist allows for the client to make an informed choice about whether or not they should work together by clearly stating her values and beliefs about society. [...]
[...] Specific techniques in solution-focused brief therapy include pre-therapy change, where the therapist asks the client what changes have occurred since they made their first appointment. Therapists also ask about exceptions to the problem situation, how the client would know if the problem was solved, and how the client rates the magnitude of their problems. Clients are often given observation homework between their first and second session to help them determine what they want to be different. Therapist feedback is usually in the form of a summary of the discussion in the last 5-10 minutes of the session. [...]
[...] If clients can think positively and focus on the future, therapy can be brief, as clients have the capacity to behave effectively and deal with their problems. Clients often describe only one side of themselves, and the therapist works to help them examine other sides of themselves. Therapists strive to create a cooperative relationship with the client, understanding that the client wants to change and they do not need to create strategies to deal with resistance. Each client's solutions will be unique. [...]
[...] A unique technique for feminist therapy is social action, where therapists encourage clients to become involved in activities that will empower them and help to change society. Feminist therapy is obviously most appropriate for women, especially women of minority cultures. Problems that feminist therapy would be most helpful with would be mild disorders and social-based problems, which would be more commonly experienced by minorities and women. Feminist therapy has provided invaluable information about how to view development from a more eclectic perspective and to break away from the traditional points of view offered in different times. [...]
[...] These two forms of postmodern therapy have many merits, and would be especially helpful for high-functioning adults with mostly non-organic mental distress. The focus on the client would be very useful to create long-term success for the client, as a dependent relationship on the therapist can be completely avoided. The focus on language, which borrows from cognitive therapy, can also help the client transform their thinking and experience long-term success and the ability to solve future problems without returning to therapy. [...]
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