What Is Sociodrama? - British Psychodrama Association
change processes that could extend psychodrama theory, inform practitioners' therapeutic .. Extract from Erin's recall: action insight in role reversal. limited the inferences that could be drawn from the research to date. Kipper and. Psychodramatic role reversal is a related method, rooted in classical role theory, in which two individuals each take the role of the other in an brain; creativity; empathy; play; psychodrama; neuroscience; role reversal Release Date. Psychodrama is a method of psychotherapy developed in the mids by J. L. a mixture of what Moreno called the empty chair technique and role reversal. help a patient prepare for an event such as a date, an employment interview, .
The modality is a group interaction process used to assist all types of populations in meeting specific group goals.
The method draws upon a person's ability to learn with their whole body and mind. It is a kinesthetic, emotional and cognitive educational methodology.
The true subject of a sociodrama is the group. The concept underlying this approach is the recognition that man is a role player, that every individual is characterised by a certain range of roles which dominate his behaviour and that every culture is characterised by a certain set of roles which it imposes with a varying degree of success upon its members. Moreno Where and for whom? Sociodramatic and Action Method techniques are actively used in a broad range of educational, health and business environments throughout the world.
Sociodrama is used with great success with both low and high functioning populations. We'll pretend that she can't hear you. To use the auxiliary chair intervention, the therapist asks the client to identify a significant other that through the use of imagination may be placed in the empty chair Haskell The significant other is defined as any person, concept, feelings, or object of significance to the client.
Examples of significant others are a parent, spouse, a part of self, one's marriage, sadness, or a college term paper. The significant others are most often the people in one's life that affect one positively and negatively.
They may be living or dead. The purpose of the auxiliary chair is to allow the client to bring to the office someone or something that needs to be examined. Often the theme is the unfinished business between the client and people from the past or present.
The client is asked to speak to the significant other in the auxiliary chair saying directly what is not said or has not been said in life. It is important that the client speaks to the chair as if the person were actually present. During the auxiliary chair technique the therapist should ask the client to role reverse and become the other. The client moves to the chair of the other and takes on the shape, posture, mannerisms, gestures, and voice tone of the other. The role reversal may be done as often as needed.
The therapist also may choose to interview the client in the role reversed position. The following auxiliary chair scene between Jerry and his mother will help to illustrate this intervention: Jerry you've been talking about some of the feelings you experience when you are with your mother. Have you verbalized any of them to her?
No, I try to avoid her, but she keeps calling me. Do you want to be more open with her? It sounds scary, but I think I'd feel better getting if off my chest. Choose a scene where such a conversation could take place. I would prefer not to do a telephone scene if that's alright with you. We'd be at mom's kitchen table. When shall this be? Oh, Sunday after church. Is Dad here too? No, he's gone as usual. Take some chairs and set up the kitchen. Jerry sets out two chairs facing each other T: Which is your chair?
Jerry points When you are in that chair you are Jerry. When you are in the other chair, you are Mother. I want you to sit in your chair and imagine your mother across from you.
She goes on and on. Role reverse and become her. Let's hear some of the things your mother says. Oh Jerry, I'm so glad you came for dinner today. I was so embarrassed after church. The minister asked how your dad was, and I just couldn't tell him that Dad was working again, so I told him Dad was ill, and I just don't know what to do. What will I do when the minister finds out? Mother is this the tone of voice you usually use? No, I think she is whiney. Getting back in role, say a few more things to Jerry in that tone of voice.
But Jerry I'm so glad you're here said in a very nasal tone. I get so lonely. Reverse roles to Jerry's chair and become yourself.
The Psychodrama Companion
I want you to listen for a moment to Mom speaking from that chair. Respond to her when you're ready. Can I say what I want to? By all means, go ahead. Mom, I'm so sick and tired of hearing you whine all the time. I can't stand you anymore. There's no one in this family that cares about me.
All you can think of is your stupid reputation. Jerry, role reverse and become your mother. How can you say those things to me? What did I do to deserve this? Reverse roles and become Jerry. Jerry returns to his chair J: Mom, I do love you, but I can't keep trying to take care of you. It's driving me crazy. I've decided to leave town at the end of the semester and make a life of my own.
Psychodrama "A Deux"
Come out of the scene Jerry and let's do some reflecting on what has happened in the psychodrama. Jerry is able to express some of the anger, hurt and helplessness he experiences in his situation. He is able to experience this catharsis because of the "here and now" quality of the interaction. The auxiliary chair technique heightens the pretended reality of the actual presence of the significant other. This is the process of making visible those invisible and often elusive qualities of the dynamic interflow that occurs between the individual and other people, animals, objects and one's self.
It brings to life ideas, feelings, and concepts by giving them substance Moreno, Our language is rich in picturesque phrases such as "I feel like a rat," "You always put me down," "It's pulling me apart," "Get off my back" or "There's a wall between us.
Concretizing in the office setting is somewhat limited because there are usually no therapeutic assistants or group members present to assist. This limitation is especially felt if the therapist wishes to concretize themes such as ambivalence or clinging. There is no one there to pull on the client. This should not be done by the therapist because objectivity may be lost. Concretizing is usually most beneficial in situations where both therapist and client may become lost in vague intellectual discussions.
When a client attempts to explain a vague yet painful sense of guilt, the therapist has the option to concretize the guilt. The client chooses something to represent the guilt. Now it becomes visible and the client may be better able to explore it once it is brought outside of the self. Role reversal is very important to the concretizing process. By becoming the guilt through role reversal, the client is able to share what the guilt is in a more complete way than if the client were to describe it while in his or her own role.
Several role reversals may be needed if the issue is vague and elusive. Many factors need to be considered by the therapist in the process of choosing which way to go in developing a concretization. Does it involve low and high? High often indicates power and authority, whereas low represents smallness. Close and distant may be used to concretize emotional distance.
Is it perceived as infinitismal, giant or somewhere in between?
What Is Sociodrama?
Where do people position themselves physically in relationship to others? Who sits next to whom? Noises often are significant to concretization either through words, screams, groans, hissing, etc. Color and light intensity: A pair of lamps are able to offer graduated degrees of light intensity. Few offices are equipped with colored spotlights with rheostat controls.
Colored lighting, if available, is effective to concretize a mood. Rough, smooth, sticky, prickly, clammy, etc. How is the body shaped? How is it positioned or sculptured? Where is eye contact? What about facial expression? Are people positioned face to face, or are their backs turned?
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Does the client make statements that express issues that can be presented visually? Examples are "caught between the devil and the deep blue sea," "spirit of doom," or "I feel like a piece of garbage.
Many aspects of psychodrama are in effect actual concretizations. The auxiliary chair gives substance to who or what is imagined in the chair.
It locates it and seals it into the partial reality of the psychodrama experience. Doubling is a concretization of the self within. Scene setting concretizes the client's living space. Another example with Jerry may identify one way concretizing may be used during a therapy session: It looks like I'll be leaving in two weeks. How are you feeling with that? Well, I've had this twisty feeling in my stomach for the last few days. I suppose I'm scared about what will happen.
Jerry, let's find out some more about that feeling in your stomach. Take that large pillow from the corner Jerry gets the pillow Now become that twisted part of stomach as you sit or lie on the pillow.
Jerry lies in a twisted mass on the pillow. In addition to his torso, his arms and legs are twisted uncomfortably. How are you doing, stomach? I'd like to know what you have to say to Jerry. He's sitting in that chair over there. Go ahead, tell him.
S You can't go away. You'll never make it! You can't succeed at anything you do! You are deserting your mother, and if you leave now, you will never be friends with your father. Jerry, come back to your chair and become yourself again. Jerry moves off the pillow to his chair. Would you care to respond to what your stomach has just said? My head tells me that it's dumb. Choose a place in the room where we can hear from that voice in your head. Over here, I guess.
Set up a chair where it is. Are you sitting, standing? I feel like I'm standing on one leg. Good, let's do that. Stand on one leg and let's hear what you have to say as Jerry's head.
He's sick of you. All you ever do is criticize him. At least I can think straight over here. She's a bottomless pit. Maybe Dad could try to get something going with her.
Dad will never be my friend either. The sooner you accept that, the better off you'll be. Reverse roles with stomach and respond to that. Jerry returns to the pillow. Jerry, come back into your chair as Jerry again. Jerry moves to his original chair where he was previous to his becoming his stomach. From this chair I want you to visualize the discussion going on here between head and stomach.
See if you can find a way to bring some closure to this scene, or do we leave it as it is? The symbolic words such as "head" or "stomach" are given shape and voices through the concretization. The "one-legged" head shows its feeling of weak support. All of these forces may be examined outside the person when the principles of concretization are applied. The psychodramatic double is an auxiliary ego that becomes the client. The threefold task of the double in office psychodrama is the mirror, the social investigator and the expander of the role.
The technique begins with a physical mirroring of the client's body.
Through interaction in the person of the "I," the double seeks information about who the client is, and what the client is feeling, so that the double can enlarge on the role and speak what is not being spoken. During this expanding phase, the double may become a voice or part of the client to which a greater part of the client's energy is being directed.
Doubling is useful for working with the client who needs support, clarification of thoughts and feelings, and motivation to express hidden thoughts and feelings.
It is a difficult skill requiring training and experience in psychodrama. One of the difficulties is that it requires the therapist to become both double and therapist. This dual function places heavy demands on the therapist in knowing when to push and recede, in keeping a sense of objectivity and timing, and in being aware of the difference between the therapist's personal issues and the client's.
An illustration of doubling follows in a final session with Jerry. So you've decided to go. When do you leave? I have a bus ticket to San Diego. My Aunt lives a few miles from there. She said she would pick me up and let my stay for awhile. What are your plans?
Well, I don't want to stay with her too long, or I'll have the same problems I had here with my mom. I think I can get a job and find a place to stay in three weeks or so.
Jerry, let's run the clock ahead two days and set up a scene inside the bus. Set out two chairs, one for me, because I'd like to be your double. I want to become you along with you as we're riding on the bus. No one can hear us. Jerry sets out two chairs. Well here we are. Where are we anyway? Somewhere around Kansas City. Is this how I sit with my legs crossed? No, I think I'll stretch out and put my head back both change posture. I've never traveled like this before.
More excited and scared than relaxed. Boy, I sure left a lot behind when I got in this bus - my mom, my dad, some friends, Joe my therapist. He's a pretty good guy. I told him I'd write and maybe call once in a while.
He's really helped me find my way. Then there are Mom and Dad. I guess they'll have to learn how to take care of themselves just like I am of myself. It's hard to leave, but I feel kind of relieved I'm on my way. But I'm scared too. I could fall on my face. Then it would prove that I can't make it without Mom and Dad.
We'll just have to see what happens. I can't believe I'm saying this. It almost sounds like there's a self-confident part of me that is growing inside of me. I really said 'we'll just have to wait and see. Yeah, it's like I can really make a new start Jerry, I'm going to take myself out of the double role, but I want you to allow yourself to take a few minutes to be where you are in what you are feeling and thinking. When you are ready, put the chairs away and let's do some sharing.
The process of warming up from periphery to center may be followed through the doubling psychodrama. The therapist has the client set the scene of the bus. Scene setting works well with doubling because it locates the experience and it gives the client a concrete physical assignment.
This movement consumes some of the client's initial anxiety about doing the doubling exercise. Once in the scene, the double mirrors the client's crossed legs and asks a question about it. It is at that point that Jerry begins to see himself actually in the bus. Changing your role, changing the messages, changing your thinking, examining the roots of where negative messaging or roles come from are all part of the practice of Psychodrama.
Where do the negative messages we give ourselves come from and how do we change them? This is all part of psychodrama. It changes us from impulsive or rigid behavior to spontaneous behavior, which is finding a new and adequate response to a situation.
People get stuck in roles due to trauma, loss, abuse, attachment or adoption issues and psychodrama helps teach how to recognize the unhealthy role and its cause, process the issue, the trauma, the grief, then build skills and practice enacting them so they can be integrated into daily life. It helps people pick up and go on and live. Perhaps we adopted these unhealthy roles when we were children. How do you let go of your role, get out of old patterns.
Psychodrama helps you try on a new role, experiment with new ways of thinking and behaving and then practice in real life situation and get used to it until it becomes your own new role. Psychodrama increases spontaneity — which is developing a new and adequate response to a situation. It is not impulsive. It is a creative new response. Can Psychodrama help teach empathy? Yes and Psychodrama does just that.
Action methods used in psychodrama help people strengthen their empathy for both themselves and others. Psychodrama is even used in international work. The healthier the roles we take on, practice and understand on an emotional level, the more understanding we have of how to lead a healthier life and conduct healthy relationships. It is about compassion for oneself and others and setting healthy boundaries.