Cultural Therapy Term Paper

Pages: 9 (2587 words)  |  Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] As the text states "other mental health workers from outside the First Nation culture must seek and develop a sense of cultural understanding through training and dialogue with both experts in cross-cultural counseling and from First Nation's persons."

Additionally, a 2011 study determined that in considering the culture of the Native American tribes and the relationship(s) between them and the Europeans who conquered them there are "misperceptions, naivete, stereotypes, romantic images, and lack of awareness on the part of both groups still create problems that affect Native peoples every day" (Yurkovich, Hopkins-Lattergrass, Rieke, 2011, p. 1013). Again, the therapist is going to have to understand that history, tradition and the values and beliefs of most Native Americans are steeped in their everyday lives and in their culture. As one recent study determines "the tribal-cultural milieu in which the author was raised incited awareness that Native American people live in a great tapestry of life where everything and everyone is interconnected" (Robbins, 2012, p. 93).

If the therapist understands that the Native American patient that he/she is attempting to assist, deeply believes in the "interconnectivity" of each and every individual, it would be interesting to determine if they also believe that way when it concerns individuals outside the Native American circle or society. This interconnectivity brings to the forefront the Native American family, the individuals, the tribes and the Native American culture overall. In fact, as a therapist, it might even behoove the therapist to address this interconnectivity in a specific manner as one that might not be as positive as it would seem. The Robbins study provides evidence of such; the study found that a Native American psychologist found that "we Native Americans become so enmeshed with our parents and grandparents that we have a difficult time getting away from our homes to a place where we could become accomplished" (p. 94).

Once again the therapist is going to have to research, read, study and interact with individuals in a community and culture that he/she is not familiar with. This means that the psychologist or therapist is going to have to be willing to learn and gain knowledge of how different cultures should be addressed, especially when trying to assist the individual patient.

Asian-Americans

Stories of the intelligence and superiority of Asian-Americans in the educational system abound in today's current mass media. One recent study determined however that "although perceived to be "the model minority,"Asian Amer cans experience similar mental health issues like other ethnic groups" (Kwok, 2013, p. 289).

An additional study showed that "Asian-Americans have been found to have a high prevalence of domestic violence, alcohol abuse, and significant distress" (Tang, 2007, p. 12).

Of course, the Tang study also provided reasons for the study's results which included a "lack of culturally appropriate services, stigma, conceptions of Western treatment and mental health providers, and cultural interpretations of mental health" (Tang, p. 12). Additionally, it seems that, at least according to the text, there are a lot of subgroups and cultures within the Asian-American culture that differ significantly from one another. The course text provides a good example of that particular concept. The study showed that "Asian-Americans that grew up on the mainland" had "very different concepts of racial and ethnic identity" and that those that grew up away from the mainland identified much more "locally" than the mainland Asian-Americans.

The question could be asked then if a therapist is going to treat Asian-American patients, will that therapist be couched with the responsibility of learning each and every cultural difference between the different Asian-American communities? Such a responsibility would be very cumbersome. The therapist would likely have to pick and choose amongst the Asian-American patients he/she treated.

Non-verbal therapy would be a very good consideration for the therapist who wishes to work with Asian-American patients. According to the text, non-verbal therapy works with Asian-Americans precisely because "Asian-Americans are often taught that dirty laundry needs to stay within the home and that sharing such secrets causes a "loss of face." Additionally, Asian-Americans are taught from the time that they are very young that it is this loss of face that is very important to their society.

Loss of face can come about when a son or daughter disrespects their parents, mother or father. In fact, the text showed that the therapist treating an Asian-American son became quite frustrated "by his hopelessness and seeming inability to stand up to his mother's living conditions." This is understandable, but realizing that the son was acting in the only manner which he had been taught since the time he was an infant, makes such a reaction much more understandable.

Conclusion

Having perused the available information on the three different cultures discussed herein, it is interesting to note that the therapist is going to have to gain much more knowledge on all cultures, not limiting oneself to just these three. Knowing the differences between the different cultures will allow the therapist to be much more effective in offering a succinct and viable diagnosis, and then the needed effective treatment. Ethically speaking, the therapist is responsible for researching and gathering the necessary information and data that will assist the therapist in addressing the pertinent issues. Such information is almost always helpful in treatment and diagnosis.

Works Cited

Bond, M.; (2014) The secret of success, New Scientist, Vol. 221, Issue 2959, pp. 30 -- 37

Jamison, D.F. & Carroll, K.K.; (2014) A critical review and analysis of the state, scope and direction of African-centered psychology from 2000 -- 2010, Western Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 38, Issue 2, pp. 98 -- 107

Kwok, J.; (2013) Factors that influence the diagnosis of Asian-Americans in mental health: An exploration, Perspectives in Psychiatric Care, Vol. 49, Issue 4, pp. 288 -- 292

Lindsey, C.; (2014) Trait anxiety in college students: The role of the approval seeking schema and separation individuation, College Student Journal, Vol. 48, Issue 3, pp. 407-418

Olatunji, B.O.; Tomarken, A.; Zhao, M.; (2014) Effects of exposure to stereotype cues on contamination aversion and avoidance in African-Americans, Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, Vol. 33, Issue 2, pp. 229 -- 253

Rachman, S.; (2004) Fear of contamination, Behaviour Research and Therapy, Vol. 42, pp. 1227 -- 1255

Robbins, R.R.; (2012) A Native American voice in multicultural psychology: Finding healing in an interpersonal tapestry, Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, Vol. 40, Issue 2, pp. 93 -- 103

Rowe, T.D. & Kambon, K.;(1999) A curriculum in African Psychology, Psychological Discourse, Vol. 3, Issue 9, pp.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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