ERIC Number: ED142855
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977
Reference Count: 0
Gratification: A Pivotal Point in Psychotherapy. University of Maryland Counseling Center Research Report No. 1-77.
Gelso, Charles J.
This theoretical paper is based on the premise that nearly all people who enter therapy do so, to varying degrees, with the wish (conscious or unconscious demand) to have dependent longing and affectional needs gratified in the therapy itself. The conditions under, and the extent to which, the therapist provides direct gratification are crucial determinants of the outcome of therapy. While certain amounts and forms of direct gratification are helpful and often necessary, too much and/or certain kinds of gratification may be destructive. The paper presents five rules-of-thumb to help guide therapist decisions about when to gratify what demands. An effort is made to connect the rules to clinical theory and recent research. The rules-of-thumb focus on: (a) differentiating between patients' wants and needs; (b) a proper therapeutic stance vis-a-vis direct gratification; (c) the use of direct gratification in the early stage of therapy; (d) patient characteristics (severity of disturbance and infantilism of demands) moderating the appropriateness of direct gratification throughout the therapy. (Author)
Publication Type: Reference Materials - Bibliographies
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Maryland Univ., College Park. Counseling Center.