Psychoanalytic Group Therapy

1. A basic assumption underlying psychoanalytic group theory is the notion that group members, through their own interactions within the group, recreate their social situation so that the group becomes a microcosm of their everyday lives. To what degree do you agree or disagree with this premise? Provide rationale for your response.
2. Psychoanalytic group therapists pay particular attention to early childhood experiences and the past as crucial determinants of past behavior. Traditional analytic group therapy focuses on the historical basis of present behavior. What are your thoughts about this emphasis? How could you apply this focus when conducting a group?
3. Multiple transferences entail a process whereby members develop intense feelings for certain others in-group; an individual may see in others some significant figure in his or her present life. Multiple transferences allow members to explore the parallels between their past and present experiences and to acquire a new understanding of their dynamics. Would you find it useful for group members to identify and explore potential transference to other group members and the group leader?
4. What kind of group members would you find most challenging? What might this say about the potential for countertransference on your part? How would you work with a client who had negatives feelings toward you, especially if you believed the feelings were inappropriate and a function of the client’s transference?
5. What areas of your life could be manifestations of countertransference? How can you identify your countertransference reactions? How can you best manage your countertransference as a group therapist?