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Course: School Group Counseling and Counseling Theories

Read Instructions:

In preparation for this assignment review the first program from the DVD provided with Groups in Action: Evolution of a Group. Note Since you can’t watch the video Read the information below to help answer the two questions. This Reading is  a brief discription of what took place in the DVD you can read the information below:



Casey’s work takes a different turn when she expresses her sadness about having to keep her being gay a secret from her mother. Casey proceeds, yet is obviously frightened. Jerry suggests a role play involving Casey picking a person in the group to be her symbolic mother. We observe considerable hesitation on Casey’s part. Marianne doesn’t want Casey to feel pressured to move ahead with the role play and asks, “Is this your agenda or Jerry’s?” She lets it be known that she is scared, yet she wants to continue. Casey agrees with Marianne that it would be more meaningful to role-play with her mother in her native language (Vietnamese). We continue to find that when people role-play with significant others in their primary language, the outcome of the therapeutic engagement is often more productive. It is not necessary that those in the room understand the content of what is being conveyed. What is important is that this therapeutic dialogue has meaning to the client. Those who observe the work are typically affected emotionally even though they do not understand what is being said.

Casey, who picks Marianne as her symbolic mother, first reveals that she is gay. We follow Casey’s lead and she eventually says, “I keep thinking what my mother would say back to me.” Marianne asks Casey to reverse roles, “becoming her mother,” and express what she imagines her mother would tell her about this disclosure. After this exchange, Casey makes a comment about what a “good mother” would say. Again, taking the cue from Casey, Marianne suggests that Casey become the “good mother” and tell Marianne (who assumes the role of Casey) what she knows that Casey needs to hear.

In reality, Casey may never tell her mother about her sexual orientation, nor would we as coleaders ever push her to do so. What she tells her mother, if anything, must be her choice. Certainly, we would not tell Casey to go away from the group and say everything she expressed symbolically in the therapeutic situation. Instead, if she opens a dialogue with her mother, she needs to decide what she most wants to say to her, and what the price might be if she does. Even if Casey does not actually approach her mother, her therapeutic enactment was both cathartic and healing. Ideally, Casey would like to have the “good mother” she deserves, yet at this time, she made a start by symbolically saying to herself what she would so much like to hear from her mother. Casey’s mother may never be able to agree with Casey’s decisions of how she wants to live her life, yet Casey can come to an affirmation of herself as a person. A very important outcome of Casey’s work was the realization that her catastrophic expectations (negative judgments from the members) were not based in reality. Marianne plants a seed in Casey’s mind that maybe her mother, like the group, may not be as condemning of her as she fears. The stakes for Casey are high, and what to say to her mother will present some difficulties for her. Another result of her work was her decision to be a bit more trusting with select people about who she is.

Although the video contains a relatively large segment of Casey’s therapy, the actual session lasted more than an hour. As can be seen, Casey’s emotional work proves to be a catalyst for most of the other members. We, as leaders, were also emotionally touched, and generally we do not hesitate to disclose this. Just because we become emotional does not imply that we lose our objectivity and our ability to facilitate the members’ interactions.14

Assume that after Casey disclosed that she was gay one of the members said, “Casey, I need to let you know that I have a hard time hearing this, because I’m not comfortable with homosexuality.” How would you intervene?

Step-by-step solution from the video ( Only consider if needed to help with questions below)

Show all steps

Step 1/3

Casey and Marianne decided mutually that they should perform the role play with the Casy’s mother in their native language i.e. Vietnamese. This is because it was assumed that such performance would prove to be more meaningful.

Step 2/3

The outcome of the therapeutic engagement is expected to be more productive. The important factor to be emphasized is that the members playing role should be comfortable and attached emotionally to each other.

Step 3/3

It is not necessary that other members present in the particular place are able to understand the content of the role played by the members. The important is that the therapeutic dialogue being conveyed has meaning to the client.


Here’s the TWO questions 

Don’t copy word for word from the reading

Below Prepare a substantive response to the following:

  • How might Casey’s sharing of her concerns for her mother’s reaction to her being gay impact the other members of the group?
  • What are your thoughts on the facilitator’s suggestions of role playing with Casey and facilitating role play?