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Couple Therapy:: Dramas Of Love And Sex (UK Higher Education OUP Humanities & Social Sciences Counselling and Psychotherapy) Paperback – 1 Aug 2013

4.5 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Open University Press; First edition (1 Aug. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0335263364
  • ISBN-13: 978-0335263363
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1.1 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 581,922 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Barbara Bloomfield is a Couples and Family Counsellor and Supervisor with Relate. She is also a former newspaper journalist, BBC radio reporter, producer and an author of several books including The Relate Guide to Finding Love.

Chris Radley provides all the illustrations in this book. He is a freelance creative consultant working principally with over-seas development and UK social needs charities, undertaking a wide range of assignments from political cartooning to charity fundraising.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The format of the book - a series of comics about couple therapy - is very refreshing and captivating. It pulls the reader right into the counseling room and provides a lively insight into both the clients and the counselors perspective and their respective challenges. It creates empathy for all parties without being judgmental over any of their stories.
This book might be of special interest to counselors at an early stage of their career in that it addresses therapy issues in a very sensitive and human way by openly discussing fears of taking wrong decisions. The authors clearly demonstrates that therapy is not an exact sciences and that there always are a number of possible approaches to a given situation.
The author's comments below the conversations as well as the reflections at the end of each story help the reader understand the counselor's train of thoughts and her counselling strategy. Even though the book contains fairly little text, a large amount of learning can be drawn from this reflective story telling format - especially as the three stories cover very divers issues of couple therapy and point out different techniques and approaches to dealing with those issues. Thereby, the authors creates a number of links to different theoretical approaches such as transactional analysis and system therapy - and demonstrates how counseling may creatively combine a number of tools and perspectives from different theoretical approaches.
The book also provides helpful advice to potentially any couple whether in short- or long-term relationships and can initiate helpful reflections.
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Format: Paperback
This new book from Barbara Bloomfield, with delightfully humane graphics from Chris Radley, makes an invigorating read as it traces the lives of three fictional couples through times of relationship crises.

The format and style of the book make it an enjoyable and intelligent read, providing (in my view) a three dimensional take on counselling. Whatever audience you belong to, public, trainee counsellor, counsellor or supervisor, there are invaluable insights, tools and tips to encourage and delight the reader.

The book provides the public with an insight into the work of Relate counselling, from the importance of providing an emotionally safe space to unpacking all kinds of fears, anxieties and emotional dynamics common to human relationships.

For the trainee counsellor, there are excellent teachings from Bloomfield both in the way she creates spaces and uses a number of specific counselling techniques to facilitate the unfolding of how couples in therapy may come to understand the particular dynamics of their relationship.

The section on supervision between Barbara and Rudi Dallos is excellent providing the reader with an insight of how seriously counsellors engage in supervision for their own learning which primarily impacts on and benefits the couples they counsel.

Easy to read, and lightheartedly dealing with very real and complex relationship issues, this book has been written by a highly skilled author. Go buy!
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Format: Paperback
This book is ideal for those who are starting off on the path towards being a counsellor, or for those experienced counsellors who have previously worked only with indivduals and would like a taster of what working with couples can be like.

The joy of this book it that it is extremely simple to read. You can read it in under a couple of hours - though I read one story at a time and reflected on it. It's the first cartoon-strip counselling book that I have read and so I found it highly original.

The three case studies are all rather different although each of them does revolve around people not taking responsibilty for their life or relationships. As a practsing counsellor, there were quite a few ideas in there which were new to me - such as getting one partner in a relationship to plait the other's hair (as it had deep bonding associations for one of them); using figures to represent adult, parent and child states; starting a difficult session by asking "who wants to be here today?"; being catious about how much information each partenr needs to know about the others affair (as too much can actually be damaging). Barbara also shows us how she would deal with a celebrity trying to muscle in on their family's therapy.

After each section there is also a dialogue where Barbara and Rudi Dallos (a Professor of Psycholgy) look at and discuss the dynamics of each story. I found those sections as useful as the stories themselves.

Recommended.
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Format: Paperback
A fantastic insight into the counselling world. The illustrations make it easy any enjoyable; combined with refreshing discussions and text.
Perfect for anyone who is considering going to counselling or starting a career in counselling.
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Format: Paperback
I think there will be many more graphic novels like this one in the future because they give the reader both the interactions in the room and, simultaneously, the reflections of the counsellor. The author brings us 3 fictionalised cases and in doing so, she de-mystifies the counselling process for her readers - who may also be potential clients considering a visit.

For trainee counsellors too, this book is a guide to best practice. Each story ends with a supervision discussion session between Barbara and Rudi Dallos her supervisor (whose name will be well known as co-author of Dallos & Driver's Relate text book, `Family Therapy'). At the back of the book, an added booklist of further reading is a useful addition, although I think a glossary of terms would also have been helpful to include.
In these 3 stories, all 3 couples are stuck:
* The first, pregnant, expecting a baby within the first month of meeting each other, are really not ready for this next, demanding life stage. Barbara's urgent task is to man up the boy who is about to become a father.
* The second couple are at Relate for family therapy. They have brought their son (`The Burdened Boy' of the title) who is acting out tensions his parents themselves cannot voice. Once this problem has been revealed the family can move on to flourish once more.
* In the third story, an enmeshed mother and daughter prevent a marriage from taking place. The groom's attention-getting device is to be discovered in flagrante in an internet sex chat room. Relate is called!
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