Confrontation in Therapy with the Non-Working Patient: The Process

  • Ilse V. Colett


I have spoken to you before on the topic of “work and Mental Health”. Thus, you are familiar with my commitment to returning my non-working patients to work. I believe that, since work is part of both mental health and normal human development, we therapists should work to foster and sustain our patients capacities for meaningful work. We must do this because work promotes (i) self-esteem, (ii) frustration tolerance, (iii) a sense of personal control, and (iv) social connectedness — all things that are essential to mental health. Inevitably, my belief that I should do whatever I can to get patients to work has led me into confrontation with them over values. This confrontation is an integral part of therapy with non-working patients and, thus, I call my therapeutic approach with them, “confrontative therapy”.


Cognitive Behavior Modification Attributional Style Social Connectedness Cognitive Restructuring Frustration Tolerance 
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  1. A. Bandora, Behavior therapy and models of man. American Psychologist, 29: 859–869 (1974).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. R. Fine, “The Psychoanalytic Vision,” Free Press, New York (1981)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ilse V. Colett
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.FresnoUSA
  2. 2.UCSF Fresno Residency ProgramFresnoUSA

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