Friday, August 3, 2012
During a recent supervision, I asked the Art Therapists to draw a patient they felt sympathetic or empathetic towards. We often complain about patients since sex offenders are difficult to work with, so this was a change from our usual venting. This directive also helped explore transference and counter transference. The hospital frequently has staff who have inappropriate relationships with the patients, so it was also important to see how something like that can get started and discuss how to prevent that from happening.
At work, the Art Therapists in the department bought white t-shirts with the name of the facility and "Art Therapy" on them. Then, during supervision, we all tie dyed our shirts using a kit bought from Michael's. All the shirts came out uniquely, as everyone used different colors and methods. It was a fun activity, and it helps us feel united and a part of a group which is good for morale. Staff and patients have made positive comments about the shirts and our creativity.
In the Coloring Mandalas for Meditation group, during the first session, I had all the group members make a list of positive feelings. I then had one member choose a feeling from all the lists, and then each member chose a Mandala to color based on that feeling. It was interesting because one sex offender had a hard time even identifying any positive feelings. One felt that his list of 7 feelings was complete even though I said they could continue adding to their list. Eventually, I hope the group members will be able to talk more about their feelings and how they can experience more positive feelings in their lives. In the meantime, maybe just meditating on a positive feeling for the duration of the group will be helpful.