Friday, March 24, 2017

Managing Hot Topics in Therapy

by Guest Bloggers, Amy Untied Ph.D., & Amanda M. Mitchell, Ph.D.

Clinicians are charged with the important task of managing challenging topics during therapy appointments. These topics range from encounters with clients who hold differing values from providers to discussing current political, social, economic and other related issues during the therapy visit. Even though psychologists are instructed on therapeutic skills like empathic listening and reflection during graduate school and supervision, it can be challenging at times to manage personal reactions. 

 Additional collaboration or supervision can be sought if needed and many psychologists and professional organizations offer suggestions for navigating these discussions. The list below includes links to articles that address some of these potentially challenging topics and more general tips for talking about difficult issues or varying viewpoints.

Ten Tips to Talk About Anything with Anyone

Is Your Therapist’s Personal Life Confidential

Success Stories with Challenging Clients

Talking About Sensitive Subjects (Geriatric population; topics such as mental health, long-term care, financial barriers)

Post-Election Blues

Talking to Kids about Politics

Talking to children about the Election

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Dr. Amy Untied earned her B.A. from Ohio University and her M.A. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. She has received training in a variety of clinical settings and completed her internship at the Dayton VA Medical Center with rotations in PTSD focused treatment, drug and alcohol rehabilitation, and general outpatient mental health. She has published several articles on the topic of sexual trauma, alcohol use and assault risk reduction. Dr. Untied is employed at a CBOC of the Chalmers P. Wylie VA Ambulatory Care Center as a Clinical Psychologist.

Dr. Mitchell is currently a Postdoctoral Researcher at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. She received her doctorate in Counseling Psychology at the University of Louisville and completed an APA-accredited internship at the University of Utah Counseling Center. Her research examines links among cognitive and systemic coping strategies with neuroendocrine and immune functioning in the context of chronic stress.