Screening potential group members is an important step in forming an effective therapy group. Identifying ideal members is a multi-step process that often begins by examining the characteristics of potential group members. Characteristics to consider may include gender, presenting problem, personality style, level of insight, reasons for coming to group, willingness to participate, and interpersonal skills. For example, a therapy group for survivors of sexual assault might limit its membership to women who have been sexually assaulted.
Once group characteristics have been identified, the group leader determines how qualified clients will be selected and how the therapy group will be marketed. Will internal referrals be used, such as the leaders own clients? Will other counselors, mental health professionals, and medical facilities be willing to promote the group? Will ads be placed on social websites? These are some of the factors that must be considered as part of the therapy group development process.
A screening interview is typically used to determine if the therapy group is a good fit for the potential client, and vice versa. When more than one therapy group leader is involved, it is best if all group leaders are present to meet with a prospective therapy group member. During this meeting, the group leader can inquire about why the person wants to be in the therapy group, their knowledge of group therapy, and their goals. A risk assessment can be conducted at this time to inquire about any past or current suicidal or homicidal thoughts/intent. Some screening for Axis II traits can also be conducted, as, often times, Axis II individuals are not effective members of a therapy group due to their inability to relate to others. The screening interview can conclude by going over rules for the therapy group, expectations, confidentiality, fees/insurance, and the signing of informed consent. Ideally, when potential clients are not accepted into a therapy group, the therapist should assist them by providing referrals for alternative therapy options. This process particularly applies to outpatient therapy groups. Inpatient or intensive outpatient therapy groups might have a different format and might be less likely to decline prospective members.
For this Discussion, review the media titled Audio Therapist: Screening Potential Clients. Evaluate the four potential clients. Consider which clients you might accept into a general therapy group and which you might not. Finally, think about how the clients characteristics align with your own strengths and weaknesses as a group therapy leader.
With these thoughts in mind:
a brief description of the clients you would select for your therapy group. Then explain why you did or did not select each client based on your strengths and weaknesses as a therapy group leader.
While there are various types of problematic behaviors, there are a few key roles that may be especially troublesome for a therapy group. Two examples include monopolists and silent clients. The monopolist is very self-oriented, dominates conversations, talks over others, and might even attempt to take over as group leader. At the other extreme, the silent client limits active participation and offers very little to the therapy group. As others in the therapy group open up and make themselves emotionally vulnerable, resentment towards the silent person who never says anything may develop.
For this Discussion, review the weeks Learning Resources. Select a problematic group role and consider how it might adversely impact a therapy group. In aIDition, consider how you might aIDress such a problematic member if their behavior became disruptive.
With these thoughts in mind:
a brief description of the problematic group role you selected. Then, explain how the problematic group role might adversely impact a therapy group. Finally, explain one way you might aIDress the problematic group role. Be specific
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