Integrating Spirit and Psyche : Using Women's Narratives in Psychotherapy book cover
1st Edition

Integrating Spirit and Psyche
Using Women's Narratives in Psychotherapy

ISBN 9780789012104
Published November 14, 2002 by Routledge
280 Pages

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Book Description

In this extraordinary collection, the voices of women's experience ring out loud and true!

The power of narrative in therapy for women is undeniable. Used well, other women's narratives can help us to understand and rewrite our own. Here, women bare their souls, reflecting on self-enhancement and growth, on discrediting negative family scripts, on seeing through demeaning cultural messages, on living in the modern world, on their wildness, wisdom, spirituality, and a great deal more! Each chapter includes questions for reflection to help readers incorporate these narratives into their own lives.

From the author: “This book began with the women's groups I facilitate. Some themes arose many times: I feel bad about myself; I can't speak up at times; I don't feel like I have any rights; I feel stupid; I feel like I am bad. But as therapy progressed, new narratives were expressed: I do have a voice; I am knowledgeable; I like being who I am; and I can work through this conflict.

“As a writer and therapist, I have taken a stance about ideas that are presented in sessions with clients and that exist in their culture. This book elaborates on those ideas and offers readers an opportunity to think about them in their own lives. Women can rewrite their lives as they become aware of their stories.”

Some of the narratives that you'll find in Integrating Spirit and Psyche: Using Women's Narratives in Psychotherapy explore:

  • women as second-class citizens
  • putting the self in context
  • women's spirituality in its many forms
  • anger as it relates to gender
  • societal pressure on women to bear terrible burdens in silence
  • ways that various cultures have demeaned women-infanticide, foot binding, genital mutilation, dowry deaths, etc.
  • societal messages that encourage feelings of helplessness, shame, anger, and inhibition in women
  • ways to resolve conflicts, take credit where it’s due, and express ourselves
  • mind-body connections
  • women to look to for inspiration--Virginia Woolf, Marie Curie, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Margaret Thatcher, and many more
  • aging and wisdom
  • women's spiritual practices--meditation, T'ai Chi, Chakra Awareness, practices from the Judeo-Christian traditions, and more!

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Part I: Enhancing the Self
  • Chapter 1. First- or Second-Class Citizen?
  • Women Who Do Not Have Children
  • Dominant Culture
  • Legal Protection
  • Financial Compensation and Success
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 2. Self in Context
  • Self-Esteem and Spirituality
  • Growth and Development
  • Research
  • Practical Ways to Promote Growth of the Self
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 3. Ancient and Ancestral Women
  • Greek Goddess Athena
  • Family Systems
  • Changing Place of Women
  • Reflection of Questions
  • Chapter 4. Women's Spirituality
  • Definitions of Spirituality
  • Constrictions of the Past
  • Reconstruction of Equality Needed in Spirituality
  • Reflection Questions
  • Part II: Discrediting Negative Family Scripts
  • Chapter 5. Men Are the Smart Ones
  • History
  • Theory and Gender
  • My Story
  • Clinical Themes
  • Knowing, Power, and Sexuality
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 6. She Is Ill
  • Pathology and Women
  • Dance/Movement
  • Chinese Family Messages to Women
  • Illnesses Resulting from a Lack of Voice
  • Anger and Gender
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 7. Be Sacrificial and Silent
  • Two Standards
  • Secrets
  • Reflection Questions
  • Part III: Seeing Through Demeaning Cultural Messages
  • Chapter 8. You Are Nobody
  • Girls Are Not Valued
  • Infanticide
  • Foot Binding
  • Genital Mutilation
  • Dowry Deaths
  • Violence Against Women
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 9. You Are Helpless
  • Harassment
  • Black-and-Blue Narratives
  • Killings—Personal Story
  • Rape
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 10. You Should Feel Shame and Inhibition
  • Advertising
  • Shame
  • The Need to Recognize Outstanding Women
  • Fears of Failure
  • Spirituality and Addiction
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 11. You Are Not Allowed to Express Anger
  • Healthy Expressions of Anger
  • Grief and Loss
  • Optimal Family Health
  • Clinical Application
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 12. You Are the Keeper of Secrets
  • Effects of Secret Keeping on Families
  • What to Consider in Opening a Secret
  • Clinical Cases
  • Effects of Revealing Secrets and Institutional Secret Keeping
  • Reflection Questions
  • Part IV: New Narratives
  • Chapter 13. I Am Knowing
  • First Poet
  • U. S. Congresswoman for Twenty-Four Years
  • Modern Role Models
  • Women and Knowledge
  • Women Have Strength
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 14. I Have a Voice
  • Oppression
  • Leadership
  • Narratives
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 15. I Have a Divine Herstory
  • Jewish Mystic of the Holocaust
  • German Artist Depicting the Evils of War
  • Quaker Mystic and Author
  • Catholic Lay Mystic and Expressing Feminine Spirituality
  • Mystic and Doctor of the Church
  • Solidarity and Martyrdom with the Oppressed
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 16. I Can Take Credit
  • Personal Narrative
  • Clinical Narrative
  • Imaging
  • Self-Confidence
  • Women Who Break Barriers
  • Blessing
  • Mentoring
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 17. I Can Resolve Conflict
  • Untangling the Past from the Present
  • Honest Expression of Your Thoughts and Feelings and Their Clarification
  • Model for Communication
  • Boundaries
  • Action Plan
  • Reflection Questions
  • Part V: Wild Women Stories
  • Chapter 18. Women Who Soar
  • Marie Curie
  • Virginia Woolf
  • Wilma Rudolph
  • Sarah Chang
  • Artemisia Gentileschi
  • Margaret Thatcher
  • Jenny Thompson
  • Sheryl Swoopes
  • Jackie Joyner-Kersee
  • Gail Devers
  • Martha Pituch
  • Caryl Simon
  • Lillian Weger
  • Jacqueline Cochran
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 19. Be True to Yourself
  • China's Myth: Mulan
  • Herstory
  • Current Narratives
  • Clinical Narrative
  • Reflection Questions
  • Chapter 20. Surviving

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