A Child's Mind | Documentary Idea
by Vera Rabie
This documentary idea involves a unique treatment method for youth and children who are experiencing family problems. The idea is a half-hour program which condenses about six hour-long sessions with a family that has a child in trouble. The problem can range from oppositionalism to poor school performance to depression, anxiety disorders, delinquency or even suicide threats.
Therapist(T) will meet with all family members together first. There is dialogue and questions with everyone. Interspersed throughout all the sessions are breaks during which the T explains what she is looking for and trying to diagnose. Specifically she is looking for the distribution of love in the family - that is, which of the 2 parents is the more loving one, of which there is only one in every family (think of your own more loving parent). Secondly she is looking for which of the children is more connected with the parents, and looking to delineate the pattern of love that is directed toward the children, that is, which children are more loved, and which one(s) are less loved. This process usually takes about two one-hour sessions to determine.
Next, the T decides on the best way to go about re-structuring the patterns of love in the family. At this point she may choose to see any combination of people in the family, such as a session with the child in trouble and one of the parents, the parents alone, the children together, the problem child alone, etc.
Finally, in a discreet and gentle way the essential problem of distribution of love is unearthed and identified and worked on with whoever is involved. Again, she may choose to treat the family as a whole for part of a session, as well as various combinations of people such as a parent and child, the parents alone, the children alone, etc.
As a result of this type of focused intervention, the anxieties, angers and depression in the child in question dissipate and the problem invariably fades away. That is, a child who was acting out stops acting out, an adolescent who was defiant and non-compliant becomes more docile and one who was threatening suicide, anieties, depression or otherwise displaying bizarre behavior stops doing so.
As a Doctor of Psychology I have performed the above protocol in numerous instances, with great success. My methods are new, unique, and regarded as somewhat radical in my field, but I rarely fail to understand and unravel a problem situation in a family with a child in trouble because I understand the way that the mind of a child works. I am the author of a book titled: They Love You, They Love Me Not: The Truth About the Family Favorite and Sibling Rivalry, published by HarperCollins 1995, in the US in 1999 and in Brazil in 2000. It explains the way a child thinks, which is entirely different from the way that adults think, a fact that creates an enormous problems in our dealings with children and has led to the unfortunate alienation of countless of our youth in privileged countries.