This is a paper on a video named Emotional Focused Couples Therapy, it is about a couple that is talking to a counseling professional about issues they are having, the biggest one being the husbands anger. Throughout the videos you see how the professional uses the three stages in interviewing to support the couple. She also does a great job on summarizing and paraphrasing what the couple is saying and feeling. The professional uses both open and closed ended questions during the session. There is also a lot of body language happening by everyone involved, some good and some bad. The professional really shows the clients that she is really there for them in her body language and the way she is reflecting their feelings back at them. The couple listens to each other and expands on their feelings with the support of the professional. They also both realize that they want to work things out between them and are willing to keep working at their relationship.
Open and Closed Ended Questions
In this therapy session the therapist asked many open and closed ended questions to help get the full picture of the client’s relationship. When the therapist was asking these questions she was using verbal and nonverbal cues from the couple, to see how and what she should be asking next. The questions that where asked in this session is:
1. Is it hard to be supportive?
2. Is it had to be close? (Meaning affectionate)
3. Do you withdraw? (From the conversation and the relationship)
4. How do you deal with the message, that you are a are screwed up? (Not ever said he just fees that way.)
5. Are times that you can be close? (Affectionate)
6. Do you think that your wife sees you as a mean and nasty person?
7. Do you feel rejected?
8. Am I getting it? (The therapist states this several times during the session as she is reflecting on their conversation.)
9. Is lonely an ok word to use? (The wife was having a hard time thinking of a word.)
10. Scott do you think that you wife knows how you feel?
11. Do you feel that she does not care in the heat of the moment?
12. Have you ever tried to explain to her how you are feeling?
13. Can you help her understand the feeling of rejection?
14. What is it like to tell her how it makes you feel when you feel rejected?
15. What would be the worst thing that would happen if you told your wife your softer feelings?
16. Would you like to be able to trust your wife and be able to talk about your softer feelings?
17. Would you like him to be able to talk about his softer feelings?
18. Do you let the feelings touch you at all?
19. Do you hear her and find that comforting? (The feelings) 20. What do you think about what he did today? (Opening up during the session.) This professional has a way that when she is reflecting what the clients are saying and expression she is asking them if she is right and they add to the conversation. Above are some of the separate questions that she was asking during the session. There were very few closed ended questions. She would reflect and they would open up even more. The professional summarized and paraphrased what the couple was saying many times during the session to make sure that she understood what they were saying is what she was hearing. The professional was very effective in summarizing and paraphrasing the relationship and the feelings that both parties were talking about and expressing.
Verbal and Nonverbal
There was verbal and nonverbal communication, actions and skills happening in the session by the couple and the professional. Watching the couple expressional the husband he had his arm and feet crossed and turned away from his wife most of the session. The wife kept going from arms being crossed to out in front of her. She also was turned away from her husband most of the session. The couple showed in their nonverbal body language that there was a problem and they both where uncomfortable with the situation. When certain question and answers where given the body language changed in the couple. The professional could tell when something was uncomfortable by their body language and she help the couple talk about it more, even though they were not picking up on the nonverbal cues for each other.
The professional at the beginning had paper in her lab taking notes, after a while she put it down and leaned forward towards the couple showing them that she was really listening to them and was really involved in what they were saying to her. The professional was able to use verbal and nonverbal skills to help the couple during this session and help them to start to listen to each other. The verbal skills that the professional used where very effectively, she was to be able to summarize their feelings and thought. The nonverbal skills showed the couple that she was supportive and involved in helping them. By sitting up and leaning forward in her chair it was another way for the couple to see she was involved in the conversations.
Stages of the Interview
There are three stages to an interview, exploration, clarification and action. The exploration stage involves helping the client examine his or her thoughts and feelings. The second stage is exploration helps the clients understand their feeling and their thoughts. The final stage is action, which is where the clients start making the change towards their goals. During this interview, the professional listen to both clients on what they thought was the problem and their feelings. They both agreed that anger was the steam of the troubles that they were having, and them not listening and communicating with each other. When the second stage was introduced the professional was involved more. She helped both parties of the couple to understand and reflect on what they each where saying and helping them truly understand and really listen to each other.
The professional also very effectively summarized and paraphrased what they were saying again, so maybe they could hear it said in a different way. By doing this she was able to get even more information from them about more if the true problems they were facing. The third and final stage is action. During this session you see that they are starting to listen to each other and even open up more. Having the husband talk about his softer feelings and also for him to hear that is wife does not think that he is a monster was a great start to the process. They both also stated that they want to work things out and be together. That statement alone should the professional that they both were committed to the process.
Self-disclosure and Reflective Feelings
During the interview the professional really worked hard to get the couple to talk about their feelings and express their thoughts. Throughout she was able to get them both to self-disclose and reflect on each other’s feelings. As times this was not an easy thing to so especially for the husband but he did do it. He was not sure about showing his softer side, he thought it made him feel week and like a sissy. The wife disagreed she thought the angry side of him was the sissy side. They both listened to each other’s feeling and acknowledge them and respected them throughout the session, but may not have always agreed with them. This interview was very emotionally charged and at sometimes uncomfortable for the couple. With that said, they both listened and rejected each other.
The professional was able to summarize both of their feelings very well, and understand what both of them where saying about the situation. Overall the therapy session was a great starting point by the couple not no were being done with their therapy and situation. Being able to talk about feelings is hard and sometime intimidating, when you are in front of a stranger. The comfort level of the session was ok, they looked uncomfortable, not just because they were there but the chairs and the overall appearance of the room, not very inviting. The structure of the interview flowed very well and the professional was able to keep the conversations moving in the right direction so the session was helpful for the couple.
(2009). Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy [Video file]. Retrieved from Phsycoheapy,bet website: http://ezproxy.apollolibrary.com/login?url=http://vast.alexanderstreet.com/view/1779000.