The article is about the use of letter writing within the therapeutic context of counseling among the adolescents. According to the article, note writing and passing is common among adolescents because it function as an outlet to test their new ideas and behaviors while receiving their peer’s feedback. It also provides a place for them to implement their emerging self concept and connect with their peers as they connect with their peers as they develop their autonomy. Article also discussed the advantage of letter writing compared to a conversation.
Obviously, a spoken word may fade over time but written words are more permanent. The author also mentioned the uses of letter in counseling such as correspondence between counselor and client, elaboration of important elements of discussions that occurred during the sessions, client empowerment through altered personal narratives, and identification of client strengths.
Meanwhile, the author also explained the theoretical basis for the use of letter writing. One of the theory that the author links to letter writing is the Morita Therapy. France, Cadieax, and Allen (1995) conceptualize letter writing as an opportunity for counseling to take place without disruption of the individual’s everyday life through traditionally scheduled counseling sessions. The other on is the narrative therapy which allow both the counselor and adolescent client to benefit from letter-writing techniques.
On the other hand, the most important part of the article is the guidelines for using letter writing intervention among adolescents. First, look for exceptions to the problem and unique outcomes. Then, assume that the adolescent has strengths and resources. Lastly, problems should be externalized through the use of language.
Finally, the author discussed about the types of therapeutics letter before she reached the conclusion. These are letters between counselors and clients, letters from counselors to clients, letters from clients to themselves.
Victoria E White, Melissa A Murray. Journal of Mental Health Counseling. Alexandria:Apr 2002. Vol. 24, Iss. 2, p. 166-176 (11 pp.)