Wednesday, September 10, 2008

To change or not to change

I have been thinking a lot about grapho-therapy lately. My original teacher did quite a bit of grapho-therapy and was especially successful with anorexics and bulimics who had no success with the traditional medical approach. He wanted to have one of his more promising students learn about medical signs in handwriting and to do grapho-therapy but she was too busy and then he became too ill.
First the writing has to be analyzed thoroughly. The analyst must decide what traits if any should be changed in the writing. Some people are happy as they are. Others don’t want to change because it would bring on too many changes in their lives. And remember a negative trait is not always a negative when it is tempering another trait.
Next does you client have things they want to change in their personality? Do you agree with the changes they think they want? You need to find out more about your client. What do they like and dislike about themselves. Not about their writing but themselves personally. It may be silly or trivial. the color of their eyes, length of their nose, they bite their nails, the shape of their ears who knows what they will some up with. You will be getting more of their writing to look at and may learn some fact that will help in the therapy.
Each trait has to be looked at to see if it is a fear, defense, resistance or escape or if it fits several of these categories. If it is a fear what is it’s defense? What are the resistances and escapes in play. What would be the first thing to change in the writing to cause the least damage? Once you have decided upon a change to recommend what do you expect to happen? Will this change be positive or negative? What about any peripheral changes? What might also change? Is this good or bad?
The first thing generally advised for grapho-therapy, and that is usually not one to cause problems, is to underline the name because things you underline are important. But what if your client is an adult with very high t and d stems (pride bordering on vanity)? To underline their name could make them obnoxious. Especially if they are aggressive and argumentative to begin or if their t and d stems are taller than the capitals (conceit).
Look at the t and d stems are they looped? Looped stems would mean a sensitivity to criticism. Is this acting like a brake on the aggressiveness? Then you don’t want to remove the sensitivity right away.
What about the e? Is it open or closed. If closed you could have them open the e so they are able to listen to others. To at least consider another’s ideas and opinions.
What if they have a looped t (fear of failure) and y that does not come back to the baseline (fear of success). Which should you change first? It depends up on the rest of the writing.
No matter what you decide is the change to make it is important to keep a close eye on what else is changing and if the changes are having any physical effect on the client. Headaches, tremors, nervousness etc. It may be necessary to stop or change the therapy in this case.

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