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Unread October 2nd, 2004, 11:28 AM
loftus75 loftus75 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 19
Default Re: Recovered memory

Thanks for your reply JustBen, I read it a couple of days ago but haven't had time to reply before now.

I would say in reply to question,
What are the practical therapeutic implications of this information?
Although I chose the rather 'hot topic' of recovered memory to initiate the discussion, the subject of memory is core to all we do in therapy. How our clients report directs the therapeutic process. It seems to me this being the case, that the reliability of these reports need some form of assessment. I would not suggest that our sessions with clients become an inquisition, but that it is part of our task to challenge our clients. Surely this is the intention when we set goals.

In my experience most clients come to therapy with beliefs that interfere with their lives, if a client believes that a traumatic event controls much of their behaviour this should be challenged.

I would say that it isn't necessarily a matter of factual truth we are discussing here, but rather the consequences of a memory which is embedded in belief as opposed to a belief that is embedded in memory. e.g., if I have a memory that leads me to believe I have no control of my current life, then in order for me to regain a sense of agency I need to challenge this belief. Equally if I believe I have a memory that I believe has some control over me, then I have to challenge that memory in order to regain a sense of agency. That is not to say one has to challenge the memory as an occurrence, but rather the effects of that memory. The question becomes, which of the two, memory or belief is the interfering factor.

What generic advice would you offer to clinicians when a client raises a memory of this nature?
Sequence is at the core of this, deciding which influence is the greatest, belief or memory.
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