Personality Theory, Therapeutic Approaches, and the Elderly Client

  • Robert Kastenbaum


How does one person go about helping another? This elementary question may be worth a moment’s reflection before we turn to the specific topic of psychotherapy with the elderly. Turning to the problems and potentialities of the elderly is, in fact, a tropism that has attracted relatively few personality theorists and psychotherapists. This means that the newcomer to the clinical psychology of later life cannot count on the guidance available in other areas of therapeutic endeavor. If a person is to work within a coherent and viable perspective, then, this is something that must be constructed by individual effort rather than simply picked up at the check-in point. And so we begin with a brief consideration of the helping process in general and some of the dynamics that have been impeding its development with the elderly client.


Elderly People Mental Health System Geriatric Psychiatry Personality Theory Psychoanalytic Theory 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Kastenbaum
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Cushing HospitalBostonUSA
  2. 2.University of MassachusettsBostonUSA

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