Brief, Strengths-Based, Collaborative Therapy: Session 3

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    • 00:00

      [MUSIC PLAYING][COMPLETE COUNSELING: From First to Last Session][Brief, Strengths Based Collaborative Therapywith Matthew D. Selekman, MSW, LCSW SESSION 3]

    • 00:22

      [Host SHANNON B. DERMER, Ph.D.]

    • 00:29

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So I look forwardto hearing what further progress the two of youhave made since I saw you last.

    • 00:35

      RAQUEL: OK.I think it's been going good.Knowing that we're coming here and with you giving us advice,I've been more aware of what I want to say.Maybe listen more, not react so fast.

    • 00:50


    • 00:52

      RAQUEL: So I think for me it's been good.Now, how are you pulling that off?How are you catching yourself?What's working?

    • 00:58

      RAQUEL: I just don't react as fast as I used to.

    • 01:01

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And more like a ballet dancer,you're on your toes and ready to move in a different direction?

    • 01:06

      RAQUEL: Right.

    • 01:06

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK. [Matthew D. Selekman, MSW,LCSW] And how did it used to be for you in the past?Like before we started working together, what would happen?

    • 01:13

      RAQUEL: I think I would react too fastand not think it over before approaching herwith certain situations.

    • 01:23

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, What else?What else have you been doing?You were shooting for the affinity eight?

    • 01:30

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 01:30

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: The number eight?

    • 01:32

      RAQUEL: I think I had a six.And then I was going for a seven.I think she was going for the eight.

    • 01:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Let's see, you were at a seven last time.You got a lucky seven.

    • 01:39

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 01:39

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN, MSW, LCSW: And youwere shooting for that eight.

    • 01:41

      RAQUEL: Eight this week.

    • 01:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And you were going for the ninebecause you made it up to your eightthe last time we were together.So what else did you do that was eight like?

    • 01:50

      RAQUEL: Well, what I wrote down there on the chart.

    • 01:52

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So we want to take a look at the experiment of you guys,as the A-team, standing up to the "I'm Right" patternand not allowing it to push you guysaround in your relationship with Steve and your relationshiptogether and with Luke.

    • 02:12

      LYDIA: Mhm.

    • 02:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK so maybe youcan talk about what's in your column in terms of the stepsthat you guys took to stand up to that pattern.

    • 02:22

      RAQUEL: Well, there was certain situationsthat came up during the week.And I just said to myself, just avoid it.

    • 02:30

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So did you do a U-turn and move onto something else?

    • 02:34

      RAQUEL: I did a U-turn.Mhm.

    • 02:35

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, great.And what's the next one?

    • 02:40

      RAQUEL: Not a big deal.That's another thing I said to myself, not a big deal.

    • 02:44

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So you didn't let the small thingsruffle your feathers?

    • 02:47

      RAQUEL: Correct.

    • 02:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.And then--

    • 02:50

      RAQUEL: Just listen.Don't add commentary.

    • 02:53

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, OK.What kind of commentary did you used to add?

    • 02:57

      RAQUEL: Just react too quick, maybe with sassy wordsor cussing words maybe.

    • 03:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.Now, did Steve faint?or kind of be shocked by your shift?

    • 03:10

      RAQUEL: No.

    • 03:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Gear shifts here?

    • 03:11

      RAQUEL: No.He just reacted calmly too.

    • 03:14

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, So did that set the stagefor a more calm time together?

    • 03:17

      RAQUEL: I think so except for just yesterday, whichis I'm on the right pattern.

    • 03:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: All right, well, we'll come back to that.Let's get this last one.

    • 03:25

      RAQUEL: I just let him talk and he will calm down.

    • 03:28

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.All right.And let's talk about how the "I'm Right" patterngot the best of you and Steve.What happened there?

    • 03:39

      RAQUEL: Yesterday I was asking hima question because my youngest daughter went to a partyFriday.Or she volunteered at a party for her school.She brought home some food, two plates of food.My daughter was looking for yesterday.I forgot that I had told him he could eat it.

    • 03:54


    • 03:55

      RAQUEL: So he reacted too fast.Don't you remember?And then, of course, there he goes with his cussing.

    • 03:60

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, wow.

    • 04:01

      RAQUEL: And so when he snapped, I snapped.I didn't even think about calming down or notreacting too fast.But then it was over with.It blew over.

    • 04:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Was it more short lived thenin the past when you guys would get into it?Did you get back on track more quicklyafter you got into it with one another?

    • 04:23

      RAQUEL: I got back on track quickly.But for him, no.I think he still was complaining about it.I said just let it go.It's over with.

    • 04:33

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.And was he able to, after a while, come to his senses?

    • 04:37

      RAQUEL: Mhm.He did.

    • 04:38

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Did he come back and apologize?

    • 04:40

      RAQUEL: No, he didn't apologize.

    • 04:42


    • 04:42

      RAQUEL: He just moved on.

    • 04:43

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: All right, OK.And then were you guys able to get back together and dosomething or talk?

    • 04:49

      RAQUEL: We were watching TV.

    • 04:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.All right.Any times where you were with Luke or you and your mom,you sensed that the "I'm Right" pattern was lurking aboutand was going to try and make the two of you lock hornsand you did something different?

    • 05:05

      LYDIA: Well, just about talking about my future and stuff.And I was just thinking, like, maybe she's right.And just hearing her out, you know?Instead of just saying, no, I'm going to do what I want.

    • 05:19

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right, that's great.Is that different for you to do that?

    • 05:23

      LYDIA: Mhm.

    • 05:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: In the past?

    • 05:25

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 05:26

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: How would it be?

    • 05:27

      LYDIA: I would just stick to my plans and my mindsetinstead of letting other people control my mindset.

    • 05:35

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great.Good.So on some level did you say to yourself,something along the lines of maybe thisis a good thing to do to address the future with mom?

    • 05:48

      LYDIA: Yeah, to just think about,in the back of my mind, what she says because I know that she'sbeen in some of my situation.So it's like why not just hear her out about it?

    • 06:09

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: What kinds of situationsare you talking about?

    • 06:12

      LYDIA: Just life lessons, like relationships.That's it.

    • 06:16

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, has mama offered yousome valuable words of wisdom about relationshipsthat stuck with you?

    • 06:22

      LYDIA: Just don't let boys get to you.

    • 06:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.All right.Any other bits of wisdom or thingsthat she said about boys and relationshipsthat you've found helpful?

    • 06:35


    • 06:39

      RAQUEL: I don't know.I told her quite a bit.

    • 06:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Were you able to havea nice conversation about the future?

    • 06:45

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 06:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: What kinds of things did you talk about?

    • 06:48

      RAQUEL: Well, in regards to where she wants to live,the schooling, her focus.She needs to stay on track.That's basically it.I'm going to be over here.She's going to be over there.I just need her to make sure she'son track and stays focused with her studying.

    • 07:06

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, OK.So it's exciting about the future.But don't jump ship with what you've got to do now.

    • 07:14

      RAQUEL: Right.Just because she's 18, it doesn'tmean she can go do whatever she wants.She has to keep on track.

    • 07:19

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Sure.OK.Were you able to talk about any kind of planning?And I know we got to keep our focus on school right now.But when you did talk about the future,were you able to talk about any kind of researchyou've done so far with Luke about places

    • 07:40

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: to live, what apartments go for, what kind of work is there?Have you have you done any research on that?

    • 07:50

      LYDIA: I haven't talked about it with her.I've talked about it with Luke, obviously.But for some reason I haven't passed it over to herto tell her what I know, how muchthese apartments are going for.I told her like $600 a month.And she was asking some questions and all that.And that was basically it.

    • 08:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Now, sometimes you can luck outand you'll get some of the utilities with it.

    • 08:15

      LYDIA: Yeah, that's what she has.

    • 08:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But it depends.Some places, some landlords, theymake you pay for everything.But my guess is, because I know you brought thisup the last time we were together,that for you it's really important to have a plan.And things to be very clear about how much things are goingto cost, what are the living options, the cost, budget,

    • 08:40

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: possibilities that might make it doable.How much money do you think, based on that,you'll have to get a job that would pay somethingso you could swing that stuff.Now, at that community college, some schoolshave housing for students from out of state,even like couples.

    • 09:01

      LYDIA: Yeah, no.They don't have that.It's just a community college that doesn't have housing.

    • 09:08

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And are there apartments rightaround the school?

    • 09:11

      LYDIA: Mhm, yeah.That's the convenient part of that.There's apartments everywhere down there.

    • 09:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, yeah.OK.Well, something to talk about with the future.

    • 09:23

      RAQUEL: She did show me once, online,the location of the apartments they were looking atand how far they were from the school.So I did get to look at that.But we are planning on going there next month to go see.

    • 09:35

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, that's wonderful.That's great.And that's really going to be exciting for you.

    • 09:40

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 09:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And Luke's coming?

    • 09:42

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 09:42

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Is Luke's parents coming too?

    • 09:45

      LYDIA: No.He has an uncle down there and some cousins.

    • 09:47

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great, so you can hang out with them.

    • 09:50

      LYDIA: Mhm.

    • 09:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Good.It's nice to know that there's family down there.That really must make you feel--

    • 09:54

      RAQUEL: We have family down there too.

    • 09:55

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh wow, on both sides.So that gives you some sense of security, right?

    • 09:60

      RAQUEL: Yes.

    • 10:00

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 10:01

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And you know what?There's a part of me that, based on my experience of you beinga very responsible young woman, Ihave a hard time believing that you would go outthere ill prepared.And even once you get out there, not making it work.

    • 10:16

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 10:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Because you strike meas someone who sets goals and makes things happen.

    • 10:20

      LYDIA: Oh yeah.

    • 10:21

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And you got some of that from your sportstoo.You're a winner, right?

    • 10:25

      LYDIA: Yeah, I'm a natural leader.

    • 10:26

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, that's right, an MVP, right?So I think that's got to give you some base of confidence,knowing that she was so responsible.

    • 10:37

      RAQUEL: It does.

    • 10:38

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And has a good head on her shouldersand will make good choices.So did you make it up to that nine?

    • 10:50

      LYDIA: I don't think so.

    • 10:51


    • 10:52

      LYDIA: I don't think so.

    • 10:52

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: You're still at the affinity eight?

    • 10:54

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 10:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Or are you at a nine minus or an eightplus?What do you think?

    • 10:58

      LYDIA: Eight plus.

    • 10:59

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: An eight plus?OK, all right.So what helps you not drop down any further?

    • 11:06

      LYDIA: Staying on track and not making situations worse.

    • 11:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So there were opportunities where thingscould have gotten out of hand?

    • 11:14

      LYDIA: Oh yeah.

    • 11:15


    • 11:15

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 11:16

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Now does this have anythingto do with my prediction?Remember last week, I said that sometimes hiccups happen?You know how hiccups are.They come and they go.And they're annoying at first.But eventually they just go.They don't stay with us for the whole week, not eventhe whole day.So that sometimes happens after peoplestart making lots of progress.

    • 11:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And by the way, I forgot to tell you guysthat you have my house record for a motherand daughter with the highest numbers of three sessions.Even though you didn't make it up to a nine,you had the eight plus.And you've made up to an eight because you were at a seven.You were at the lucky seven last time.So if you keep going at this rate,

    • 11:57

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: I mean, you might break the scale.And maybe get a 12 or something.

    • 12:02

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 12:03

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I don't knowwhat the Guinness Book of World's Recordsare for scale breaking.But maybe, at your pace, you guysare going to be competing with whoever that was.

    • 12:11

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 12:12

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But I'm justwondering how else you prevented things from getting much worse?It could have dropped down way backto where we were when we first started.So how did you keep things at an eight plus?

    • 12:28

      LYDIA: Well, the key is to just hear the other person out,like I did with my mom.Sometimes you just have to consider the factthat you're not always the one that's always right.And each and every one of us is differentin our own special way.And so when you have a mindset on something of like,

    • 12:54

      LYDIA [continued]: if I did something I think I'm right about itor I didn't do anything wrong, and you think differently,than I'm going to hear you out and understandwhere I went wrong.So that's basically what I did.

    • 13:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Did the "I'm Right"pattern try and creep into your relationship with Lukeat all over the past week?

    • 13:13

      LYDIA: Yes.

    • 13:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, so tell me about that.

    • 13:17

      LYDIA: Well, we were just talking and stuff.And I don't remember, but I thoughtI was right about something.And I was like, why?Why do you think that I'm wrong or something like that?And he told me.I understood it.And I said I'm sorry.

    • 13:37

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great.Was that different for you?

    • 13:40

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 13:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: What happened in the past?

    • 13:44

      LYDIA: I would just think I'm right.

    • 13:46

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So you'd keep defending your position?

    • 13:48

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 13:49

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great.So some flexibility there.So let me ask the two of you, out of 100%, what percentageof the time over the past week do you think the two of you,as the A-team were in charge of the "I'm Right"pattern versus the "I'm Right" pattern beingin charge of the two of you?

    • 14:10

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: Our of 100%, what do you think?

    • 14:11

      RAQUEL: Well, you can see from that I only had one hiccup.So it was just yesterday.Otherwise I would have been 100% where I was in control.

    • 14:21

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, so individually yousaw you're at 90%?

    • 14:24

      RAQUEL: Yes.

    • 14:25

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.How about yourself?What would you rate yourself over the past week?Being in charge of the pattern?

    • 14:30

      LYDIA: A 90%.

    • 14:31


    • 14:32

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 14:34

      LYDIA: I don't want to score too high.

    • 14:35

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: That's right,you want to give yourself some room for improvement.

    • 14:38

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 14:38

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great.Good for you.

    • 14:40

      RAQUEL: But on the other hand, Matt, things were good.But again, when she goes places she doesn't text me.I have to always be the one, where are you?Did you get there?So we still have to work on that one.

    • 14:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, I'm wonderingif that is an "I'm Right" victory over here.I'm just wondering if the old "I'mRight" thinking creeped in your mind and it's like, hey,I'm 18.

    • 15:03

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 15:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: You don't need to know everything.But you see this pattern brainwashespeople to think like that.And then they get lead footed.And then it shakes up your relationship a little bit.But then there was also a time where mom wanted to talk to youbut I guess the move and everything.And you did talk with her.

    • 15:23

      LYDIA: Mhm.

    • 15:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So it was a good comeback.

    • 15:26

      RAQUEL: Yes.

    • 15:28

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.Did you guys have any conversations as the A-team?Did you guys huddle at all?Pull your heads together and say,you know, OK, well, we've had a hiccup here or there.But let's still make it a good week.Any kind team talk like that?

    • 15:50

      RAQUEL: No.

    • 15:50

      LYDIA: No.

    • 15:51

      RAQUEL: I said I'm going to let her handle itherself an then I'll handle my situation myself.

    • 15:56

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.All right.One thing that I believe in, if we find things that work for usand if this is helpful in helping youjust be mindful of this pattern and how it shakes things upfor the two of you, we might want to just continue to do it.

    • 16:18

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And as days pass, if there's somethingyou want to put in the "A" column or the "I'm Right"pattern column please feel free to do that.

    • 16:27

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 16:28

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So I'd like you to take this withand we can keep working on it.

    • 16:32

      RAQUEL: Sounds good.

    • 16:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK I think whatI'd like to do at this point is meet with momalone for a little bit.And then we'll have our time.

    • 16:39

      LYDIA: OK.

    • 16:40

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.Great.So I want to revisit your relationship with Steve.

    • 16:45

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 16:46

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: It sounds like over the past week you'vedone a great job of being open minded and flexibleand on your toes and shifting gears when you needed to.And only one time, for a short amount of time,you got a little lead footed.But that I was more due to the "I'm Right"pattern that snuck up on you.A surprise attack thing.

    • 17:08

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: So one little hiccup's not that bad.

    • 17:11

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 17:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So I'm just wonderingwhat your secret is, how you're able to be so mindful of thisand so successful at it?I feel like I should get your autograph.

    • 17:25

      RAQUEL: No.

    • 17:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I just had whatyou've been telling us in mind, to just not to react so fast.Don't let the "I'm Right" always get in way.So I just took my time, listened.

    • 17:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So is that like a neon sign in your mind?It's flashing?

    • 17:48

      RAQUEL: Yes, yes.

    • 17:49

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Beware of the I'm right pattern?

    • 17:51

      RAQUEL: Right.And kind of like, OK, just listen.Keep your mouth shut.Don't say anything back.Because I do tend to react too fast sometimes.In the past I would think back, OK what happened?

    • 18:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And it soundslike he can get pretty lead footed whenthe pattern gets the best him.

    • 18:14

      RAQUEL: Oh yeah, even faster.Right.

    • 18:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And so it's disarming for him.He's not expecting you to be so flexible.In the olden days, it probably wasmore like a center ring thing, like two boxers verbally.

    • 18:30

      RAQUEL: Right.

    • 18:31

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And and both of youwould not budge from your positions.But now it's really hard for the opponentto go center ring with someone who refuses to do that.

    • 18:42

      RAQUEL: But I think it's calming him down too.

    • 18:44

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, tell me about that.

    • 18:46

      RAQUEL: I've noticed that if I don't reactand he doesn't go any, he doesn't escalate.His temper doesn't get worse.So that's a good thing.

    • 18:55

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, it's excellent.

    • 18:56

      RAQUEL: Yeah.But this one time, the hiccup we had,he probably was ready to strike.So he did.

    • 19:06

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Was there somethingabout that situation or that one time that caught you off guard?That moved you away from what had been working for you?And where you caved into the pattern?Was there something that led up to that incident with him?

    • 19:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: Maybe you had been not in a great mood,or maybe Lydia had done somethingthat you were worried about or upset about or something.

    • 19:36

      RAQUEL: No not about Lydia.It was just I don't know.Maybe I needed to shout something out.But not sure where it came from.Maybe I was just reacted too fast.

    • 19:49

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, all right.

    • 19:50

      RAQUEL: Because again, he starts cussing.And right away, when he does that, it just gets me mad.

    • 19:57

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah.Were there times over the past weekwhere he did start cussing, you had not brought that on.But he was just walking around cussing about somethingand you didn't let it get to you?

    • 20:11

      RAQUEL: Yeah, I think there was a few times.But I knew it was minor.

    • 20:15


    • 20:16

      RAQUEL: Yeah, and again, I was mindful of what was going on,what was going to happen.

    • 20:20

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So it sounds like that's an example.This is not a big deal.

    • 20:24

      RAQUEL: Right.

    • 20:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Just avoid it.

    • 20:25

      RAQUEL: Right, just listen.Don't add.

    • 20:26


    • 20:26

      RAQUEL: Yes, I had those things in mind at that time.

    • 20:28


    • 20:30

      RAQUEL: But yesterday, I don't know.Maybe I needed to shout back.Just to get it out.

    • 20:37

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: How do you thinkthings are going right now?I know you've said that he has a separate residence that he canalways go to when he wants to.But it sounded like you were spending more time together.

    • 20:49

      RAQUEL: Yes.

    • 20:51

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Do you know what the criteriais for him to permanently move backunder the same roof with you?Or do you guys want to have this arrangement wherehe can come and go?

    • 21:03

      RAQUEL: It's going well.It's going well.

    • 21:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: If you're going to be aroundme swearing I don't want you here.But what's the deal with that?It's not clear to me what needs to happen for the two of youto be back together more often or permanently.Or is this an arrangement that you both agreed tothat you thought it was a good idea together,that we have separate living?

    • 21:26

      RAQUEL: Yes.We both agreed to this.And it's working out well.

    • 21:29


    • 21:30

      RAQUEL: Even those 90% of the month he'sover here at our house, it's still just OKthat I don't mind that he has that by his mother's house.It's by his mother's house.He goes over there anyways and helps her out, do things.

    • 21:43

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Because she's sick or something, right?

    • 21:44

      RAQUEL: Well, she's elderly.She's in her '80s.

    • 21:46

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, yeah.

    • 21:47

      RAQUEL: Yeah.But no, it works out well.There's still that trust that if he goes over therefor whatever reason, but he's always he always comes back.

    • 21:57

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Is he hanging around more nowthan he had for a while?

    • 22:01

      RAQUEL: Compared to this time last year, yes.

    • 22:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And you thinkthat perhaps some of the changes and adjustments that you'remaking are helping make the climate less stressfulso that you guys can spend more time together?

    • 22:15

      RAQUEL: I think so.Mhm.But then that's me.We're going to need to work on him to get himto do his part too, eventually.

    • 22:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So I'm just wondering if you want some help from mein terms of what you think we needto do with him that might help him in some way or another?And then maybe you can tell me about whatyou've tried to do already.

    • 22:42

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, I just tried talking to him,tell him why does he have to cuss?Why can't he just talk calmly and let'swork out the situation?

    • 22:53

      RAQUEL: Although the other day, now that I just remembered,the other day he did apologize for the past.He said, I've been thinking about something.Yeah, I apologize for whatever.

    • 23:05

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Some big things?

    • 23:07

      RAQUEL: Yeah, some things in the past.And I'm like, oh, that's good.Thank you.

    • 23:10

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So he just spontaneously came up to youand apologized?

    • 23:13

      RAQUEL: Yeah.

    • 23:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Wow, did you almost faint?

    • 23:15

      RAQUEL: No.But I'm like OK, that's good.Let's see how long this is going to last.

    • 23:20

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: That's amazing.That seems like out of character for him, huh?

    • 23:21

      RAQUEL: It was good.It was good.But then boom, that was probably Saturday.Then Sunday.

    • 23:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Change is a funny thing.It's three steps forward and two steps back.

    • 23:31

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 23:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But he's still ahead of the game here.I mean things could be a lot worse right now.

    • 23:38

      RAQUEL: Yeah.It's good.It's good.

    • 23:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I know that Lydia has brought upthat she worries about the two of you and her ideal miraclepicture, that you guys would have a better marriage and allthis.And yet it sounds like what worksbest is to live separately and thenspend quality time together.

    • 24:08

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: One of the things that I guess we want to be thinking aboutis how the two of you can impress upon the kidsthat we're adults here.And we'll take care of our business.And you don't really have to worryabout our marital relationship.And it sounded like Lydia is very caught up in that drama.

    • 24:30

      RAQUEL: Right.Right.

    • 24:31

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And how can we release her?Is there anything that you and Stevemight be able to say to her or do,or model for her that would make herfeel less responsible and less worried about that?So that she can be totally freed upand focus all of her energy and timeand doing well academically at her new school,

    • 24:53

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: and her relationship with Luke.Do you have any ideas about what kinds of things the two of youmight be able to do that may help?

    • 24:59

      RAQUEL: I think we're going to haveto sit down and talk with them and let them know that OK, weyell loud.Dad cusses.Mom sometimes cusses back.But don't worry about it.It's OK.They even see it for themselves.10 minutes later we're back to talking normally, maybe

    • 25:20

      RAQUEL [continued]: laughing and watching a movie on TV or something.Or going to the store, running errands together.They see it for themselves, that after 10 minutes it calms down.

    • 25:30

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Have you had conversationswith Steve, especially with Lydia having some worriesabout your relationship?

    • 25:37

      RAQUEL: I believe I did mention it to him that yeah, itbothers her.And it bothers, I'm sure, Emily also.

    • 25:42

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.Is he responsive to that conversation?

    • 25:48

      RAQUEL: Yeah, he said something positive, like I know.I know.And I'm like, OK, well, you got to talk to them.Or you should talk to them.But then another time he's like, well, yeah, it's your fault.So see?Then I stopped.I didn't even pursue the conversation any further.Because he wasn't going to see it the wayI wanted him to see it or not that I was right,but he should have seen the right way.

    • 26:10

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So do you think that might be a good idea, to first talkwith him and let him know that we'reboth proud of our daughter.She's amazing.I don't know your other daughter, so I don't know.She's probably amazing too.

    • 26:26

      RAQUEL: Yes.

    • 26:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But that we have these twowonderful daughters.And it's very important that they nothave to worry about us.And can we just, you and I, talk about whatwe can say to them so that they'll feelless concerned and responsible?And see if you can come up with a joint message.

    • 26:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And being the man and everything,he may want to be the lead voice but represent the relationship.And maybe also be clear.I don't know if you think this mightbe a good idea, clear about this whole separation,what it's about.And why it's working.

    • 27:08

      RAQUEL: I talk to them about it when they were younger.Mhm, I did.But just have to be reminded about it then.Yeah.But they see it for themselves.Well at least I feel that it doesn't have to be explained.Because they see it for themselves.Yeah, we can talk about it.

    • 27:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Can you thinkof anything else, either lately or in the pastthat you've come up with that helps change the way Steveinteracts with you that seem to help even a little bit?

    • 27:42

      RAQUEL: No, just what I had said about to just listening to him,not reacting.I try to have more conversation with him about thingsoutside the home, maybe his work, my work.Run errands together, invite him to go places with us.

    • 28:03

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.And you've talked with him about also Lydia's big move and Lukeand their plans.And how does he respond to that?

    • 28:14

      RAQUEL: He's like, what?He'll just wait for me to explain everything to him.He's like, OK, well as long as you know what's going on,you're handling it.You just let me know what I need to do.

    • 28:28

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.That's a separate conversation, but do youthink it might be worthwhile to have that conversation with himagain in terms of how you want to present?I mean, we don't have to worry about it now.Because she hasn't left yet.And this probably won't happen until over the summer, right?

    • 28:49

      RAQUEL: Right, July probably.

    • 28:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right.So maybe having a conversation with him at this point,since you're going out there in a month.Is he going with or not?

    • 28:60

      RAQUEL: No.

    • 29:01

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Maybe he has some ideasabout things to investigate out there,outside of looking at apartments possibilities,that type of work that you might be able to get.And maybe he has some other ideas about thingsthat you should investigate.And by asking that of him, I thinkthat he'll feel valued and feel important

    • 29:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: in this decision making.And men like to feel like that.Especially with the machismo part of it.You know what I'm saying?

    • 29:31

      RAQUEL: Right, mhm, yes.

    • 29:34

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Maybe that might be worthwhile,talking with him too.

    • 29:38

      RAQUEL: Sure, yeah.

    • 29:42

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: It didn't soundlike it was frequent, her not responding to your texts.But other than that, I know last week youwere a little concerned but you didn'tmake a big deal about it.I guess she was behind with some assignments.

    • 29:56

      RAQUEL: Right.

    • 29:56

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Has she taken stepsto get those things done?

    • 29:60

      RAQUEL: I asked her several times.And she said yes, she did.

    • 30:02

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.And she just seems so responsible.It's hard to doubt that she would just give you lip serviceand say that she did unless she did it.

    • 30:12

      RAQUEL: Right.

    • 30:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But other than that, are thingsgoing well with you and Lydia?

    • 30:17

      RAQUEL: They've been going good.

    • 30:19

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: All right, well it's Lydia's turn.

    • 30:21

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 30:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: All right solet's continue on using this.

    • 30:25

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 30:25

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And maybe youcan talk with Steve about these two topicsand see how he would like to present this to the girls.

    • 30:36

      RAQUEL: OK, sounds good.

    • 30:37

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Good, all right?

    • 30:37

      RAQUEL: Thank you.

    • 30:38

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So I was wondering if there's anythingthat you wanted to talk about todaythat's been on your mind that's important to you?

    • 30:49

      LYDIA: I don't know.I've just been on the same topic since last weekabout my parents and stuff.I see that my mom has been trying more not to beaggravated as much as my dad.And just leave it off as it is.

    • 31:09

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So great A-team member?

    • 31:12

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 31:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Excellent.Yeah, it seems like mom's taken a lot to heart, the thingsthat we've talked about here.And she seems like she's working really hard.And along those lines, I know that when we firststarted you were saying in your miraclethat you would want your parents to have a moreharmonious marital relationship and that you

    • 31:33

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: had some concerns about after, I guess,your other sister leaves the nest that theymight go their separate ways.And first of all, I appreciate the factthat you came here with your mom.Because obviously your mom has needed some support

    • 31:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: to try and turn things around with your dad.

    • 31:58

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 31:58

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But it seemslike they have this arrangement where we have these twoseparate living spaces.And that for the two of them, right now,that's the best kind of deal.That their goal or their objectiveisn't to have this harmonious marriage,when they first met one another and madlyin love with one another and all that kind of stuff.

    • 32:21

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: So how can you allow them to strugglewith their relationship and step back enough so you can focusyour attention on what you need to doin terms of finishing strong, your last year in school.It's always great finish strong and don't

    • 32:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: let the senioritis trip you up.

    • 32:43

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 32:44

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I thought you handled the missingassignments very well.She could have been all over you about that, right?

    • 32:50

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 32:51

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But I think she's become more flexible.And I think she recognizes that senioritishappens to everybody.But finishing strong this year and havinga good solid strategy so that when you get out thereyou've got somewhere to live.You've got a budget plan.You know what the job possibilities are

    • 33:12

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: and how much you have to make to survive out there.I would feel really comfortable if I had a sense from youabout how you're going to not allowtheir marital relationship to be like a cloud followingyou over your head when you're out there.

    • 33:33

      LYDIA: Well, I know how my mom feels about it.I don't know how my dad feels about it.I have no clue at all.The only thing that I heard from him that really got to me was Iguess he was going on a rant about something.

    • 33:53

      LYDIA [continued]: And I was the only one in his presence.So obviously he's going to talk to me, just talk.And then he was like, if your mom goes to Texasthen we're getting a divorce.

    • 34:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: He said that to you and your sister?

    • 34:13

      RAQUEL: No, just to me.He was just talking.

    • 34:16

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And how did you respond?

    • 34:18

      LYDIA: I didn't respond.Well, I was thinking it.I've always been thinking it.But it's just like, hearing it was waydifferent to experience.

    • 34:31

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So what was your reaction inside?

    • 34:34

      LYDIA: That I was right in a sense.

    • 34:38

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So you forecastedthat this could happen?

    • 34:41

      LYDIA: Yeah.I really did.

    • 34:44

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But can you live with that?If that happens?

    • 34:48

      LYDIA: I never thought it would ever happen to me.So it's going to hit me hard if it does happen.I just don't want to think of it happening.

    • 34:57

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah.So if that happens, how will you?Well, wait, your younger sister is how manyyears younger than you?

    • 35:10

      LYDIA: Just nine months?I don't know.

    • 35:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Nine months.

    • 35:15

      LYDIA: Just one right after the other.

    • 35:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So in other words,this could potentially happen like next year sometimeor after that?

    • 35:25

      LYDIA: If my mom moves in the next two years.

    • 35:28


    • 35:29

      LYDIA: Yeah, so if she moves than I guess that's it.That's why I said, like, when she's thinking of moving,how are they going to figure it out?Because that whole him saying that we'regoing to get a divorce really, well, that's it then.

    • 35:47

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Have you mentioned thisto Luke, your concerns about this?

    • 35:51

      LYDIA: Yeah, when it happened I said that.But he was just like, it'll be OK.I'm there for you.

    • 35:58

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Aw, that's really sweet.

    • 35:59

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 35:60

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: What a good man.How did you find this guy?I mean, he's priceless.You know?That's really great.So that's the good thing, the two of you going out there,that if something like this happens youhave a built-in support system.Plus you have relatives out there.

    • 36:17

      LYDIA: Yeah, I do.

    • 36:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: On both sides.So it's like you're still going to stay connected to family.

    • 36:21

      LYDIA: Mhm.

    • 36:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But the important thingis that you have to have a life.And it sounds like you've been a good loyal daughter at homeand support from mom, probably, a lot.And I said this to your mom, that it's importantthat your mom and your dad get together and havethese important conversations with one another

    • 36:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: about the status of their relationshipand explain that to you and your sister.And also about helping you with your strategyto be successful when you move out to Arizona.Even know you said you were at an eight plus,

    • 37:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: you're still doing awesome.And I'm just wondering, what stepsare going to take over the next week to get up to a nine plus?

    • 37:17

      LYDIA: I don't know.Doing the same stuff that I've been doing.

    • 37:22


    • 37:23

      LYDIA: Like my mom.Like seeing it in another person's eyes,and trying to understand the situation more before jumpingto conclusions.Yeah.

    • 37:42

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And those assignments that youhad to do, those are done?

    • 37:47

      LYDIA: Yes.

    • 37:47

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, good.

    • 37:49

      LYDIA: Tomorrow I'm going to haveto go stay after for school to do that one last project.

    • 37:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, OK.Is it an easy project to do?

    • 37:57

      LYDIA: Yeah, it's for Spanish.

    • 37:60

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, you should be acing that.Right?

    • 38:03

      RAQUEL: Yeah.

    • 38:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: What are you getting, an A in there?

    • 38:06

      LYDIA: Mhm, yeah.

    • 38:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Are you ready finishing, pretty much,with close to straight A's?

    • 38:11

      LYDIA: Close to them, yeah.A's and B's.

    • 38:13

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Good.Excellent.And then what will be your accumulated average?

    • 38:18

      LYDIA: The whole four years?

    • 38:19

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, yeah.Before you graduate?What do you think you're going to finish with?

    • 38:23

      LYDIA: It's going to be a 3.30.yeah

    • 38:25

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, that's great.That's what I finished high school with too.Yeah.I had this problem when I started high school,that the only thing I cared aboutwas going to parties and playing sports.And I didn't take my schoolwork very seriously.And then I worked really hard my junior and senior year and Ifinished with a 3.30, 3.40.

    • 38:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: So have you been doing some researchin terms of the kind of jobs that you could haveout there, what kind of work?

    • 38:57

      LYDIA: Well, I'm going to go to schoolto be a registered respiratory therapist.

    • 39:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right, I know that.

    • 39:06

      LYDIA: That's their own course.There's nothing else like relatedto it except for, like, if I wanted to be a nurse.Then I would already have those fundamental requirements.And then I'll work my way up.But this job only requires an associate.

    • 39:26

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: But you haveto have a job on the side to pay for your rent and everything.

    • 39:31

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 39:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So what have you thought about?

    • 39:34

      LYDIA: I currently work at Jewel-Osco.And Jewel-Osco is only in the northern states.

    • 39:40


    • 39:42

      LYDIA: So down there it's Albertson's, I think.

    • 39:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, yeah, sure.

    • 39:46

      LYDIA: So I'm going to maybe transfer there.

    • 39:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.Great.And you've had experience working in retailand doing a wide range of things, right?Like selling or cashier?

    • 40:02

      LYDIA: Yeah, cashier.Yeah.

    • 40:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And they always need a good cashierat these places.So maybe that could be it.And what do you think Luke's going to do?

    • 40:13

      LYDIA: Well, his aunt works at this bank.I think she's a bank teller.So she was talking to him, sayingI can get you a job here as an internor something, or assistant.And so that's what he's looking into.

    • 40:29

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Great.Excellent.So is that what he's thinking about doing?Like banking and business.

    • 40:34

      LYDIA: Oh no.No, he's going to be a registered nurse.

    • 40:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh that's right.You told me that.but those jobs tend to pay pretty good, banking jobs.Some of them actually give you benefits,like insurance and stuff.Maybe through school they'll have some kind of insuranceor something like that.

    • 40:53

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 40:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.How's your sister handling the situationat home with mom and dad?

    • 40:60

      LYDIA: She never really talks about it.I'm usually the one that steps up and says something.And it really gets to me.But she so far, is just like no emotion at all.She's just in her own world.She's always on her iPad and stuff.

    • 41:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.While you're still at home the rest of the school year,what other steps can you take to not allowthe ups and downs of their relationshipto get the best of you?Can think of some things that you couldthat could be helpful?

    • 41:35

      LYDIA: Well, not be in the house.

    • 41:40


    • 41:42

      LYDIA: Avoiding it.But I guess, just if I feel the animosity,it's just like I'll just look at my mom and be like, you know?And she'll just like, let it go.I think that's a good start.Because it's always going to be animosity going around.

    • 42:05

      LYDIA [continued]: I could just feel it when I go downstairs.It's just like, I know.I've been around it all my life.So I'll just be OK.I guess I'll kill it when I go downstairs.It's just like, OK, let's just not have that.

    • 42:20

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, so going downstairs.

    • 42:22

      LYDIA: Yeah, be around them more than just them two.Because if they're around each other all the time,I feel like problems are going to evolveinto something greater.And maybe sometimes it's like this.The hiccup will come out.

    • 42:39

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah?Well, I'm going to have you and your momcontinue to do this over the next weekand see what other creative ideas you come upwith to not get lead footed and let these stressorsget the best of the two of you, right?But OK, we got to stop.And we'll get mom back in here and we'll wrap up.

    • 42:57

      LYDIA: OK.

    • 42:58

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, great.Wow, I have to say that I am so blown awaywith what a fine job you did with our little experimentover the next week.The A-team was just dynamic.You guys, we got to have high fives here.Way to go.

    • 43:15

      RAQUEL: Well, I kept you in mind.You're helping us.

    • 43:18

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, But the "I'm Right" pattern,the poor "I'm Right" pattern, only one victory,one little hiccup over the whole week.That's pretty amazing.And then you also set the house recordof getting up to eights and eight pluses fasterthan any other family.And I've been working with families since Iwant to say back in 1982.

    • 43:39

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: So you guys are awesome.

    • 43:40

      LYDIA: Wow.

    • 43:41

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: So next we go for the GuinnessBook of World's Records.We're going to break the scale.Right?

    • 43:45

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 43:49

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And by the way, speaking on those lines,I forgot to mention that usually whenpeople are doing great like you guys are doing,I give people mini vacations from counselingas a vote of confidence that I think that you guys can do itwithout me.And because things are kind of tight in the way we'redoing this whole thing together here,

    • 44:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: I was going to ask each of you if youwere to go on a vacation, where would you go right now?If somebody said you can go anywhere you want,where would you go?

    • 44:22

      RAQUEL: On them?

    • 44:23

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah.On them.Where would you go?

    • 44:27

      RAQUEL: I would probably say somewhere in Mexico on a beach.It's too cold right now.

    • 44:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Los Cabos?

    • 44:33

      RAQUEL: I haven't been there, no.I've only been to Puerto Vallarta.

    • 44:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: On the west coast you'd go, probably,or the gulf?

    • 44:39

      RAQUEL: Yeah, right.

    • 44:41

      RAQUEL: The west.I've been to the west.But I do want go to the east of Mexico where the pyramids are.

    • 44:46

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, Merida.

    • 44:47

      RAQUEL: Which I they won't let you walk up them anymore.

    • 44:50

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right, Merida.

    • 44:51

      RAQUEL: Yeah.I would like to see those.

    • 44:53

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.And where you go, if you could go anywhereyou wanted in the sun?

    • 45:01

      LYDIA: I have no idea.

    • 45:02

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: California?

    • 45:04

      LYDIA: I don't know.I was thinking California.But I don't know.

    • 45:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, I don't know.

    • 45:08

      LYDIA: I honestly don't know.

    • 45:10

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, all right.So I'm going to pull out my trusty imaginary crystal balland hand it over to you.And I want you to gaze into that crystal ball.And I want you to gaze across the next weekand describe for me, in detail, the stepsthat you're going to take to get up to a nineplus over the next week.What are you going to do?

    • 45:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: What do we see you do?

    • 45:34

      LYDIA: Have patience.

    • 45:37

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: With whom?

    • 45:38

      LYDIA: With my parents and Luke.

    • 45:40


    • 45:41

      LYDIA: And get my grades up.I have to focus on myself also.And communicate with her.

    • 45:55


    • 45:56

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 45:57


    • 45:58

      LYDIA: Huh?

    • 45:58

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Via what?What routes?What way are you going to communicate with her?

    • 46:03

      LYDIA: Through cell phone.

    • 46:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.So texting?

    • 46:06

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 46:08

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Anything else?All right, hand the crystal ball over to mom.OK, mom you're gazing at a crystal ball.Over the next week, what are you goingto be doing to get up to a nine?

    • 46:20

      RAQUEL: OK, again, be mindful of what you're telling us,what you're training us to do, and to be mindful of patienceand listening.And not reacting too quickly.

    • 46:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK.All right.And both of you, I'll take that back.Thank you.Both of you said that you were at a 90%,the A-team was at a 90%.So as a team over the next week, pooling your heads together,what are you going to say to one another and do as a dynamic duo

    • 47:00

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: to get us up to 100% in charge of the "I'm Right"pattern over the next week?Can you think of some steps you guys are going to take?

    • 47:11

      RAQUEL: The same thing as I said,just be mindful of your therapy for us and your advice.

    • 47:18

      LYDIA: Yeah.

    • 47:18

      RAQUEL: And For us to see where we reacttoo quickly in situations.

    • 47:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Mhm.Can you think of anything, Lydia,that you'll be doing to frustratethe "I'm Right" pattern?

    • 47:36

      LYDIA: I like this one right here.Just let him talk and he'll calm down.

    • 47:40


    • 47:41

      LYDIA: I think getting it out is better than keeping it in.Just talk more.

    • 47:51

      RAQUEL: Yeah, communication.

    • 47:52


    • 47:52

      RAQUEL: That's a good one.

    • 47:54

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: All right.Well, since you like to take my voice wherever you go,take my voice on the west coast of Mexicowhile you're on vacation over the next week.And let's continue to frustrate the "I'm Right" pattern.And I look forward to hearing whatfurther progress the two of you make next time we get together.

    • 48:14

      LYDIA: OK.

    • 48:14

      RAQUEL: OK.

    • 48:14

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: OK, so let's stop.[MUSIC PLAYING][Brief, Strengths Based, Collaborative Therapy,A Discussion With SHANNON B. DERMER, Ph.D. SESSION 3]

    • 48:29

      SHANNON B. DERMER: All right, so Matthew,I'm going to take out my crystal ball.There you go.

    • 48:35


    • 48:36

      SHANNON B. DERMER: I love looking at the crystal.But I'm going to ask you to look in your crystal ball.And it's a year from now.And the family has kept up the changesand continued to progress.What do you see them doing in a year from now?

    • 48:52

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, I see Luke and Lydiahaving a good relationship.It's already pretty solid right now.The true test is living together.Because sometimes you discover that you'reinvolved with your worst nightmareor sometimes there's a really good fit.But I'm pretty optimistic that these guys are very compatible

    • 49:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: and I see them doing very well and working hard and doing wellacademically and developing careers and getting married.And yes, the parents will probably split up.But the good news is that there'sfamily where they're going.And I could see them with extended family for support.

    • 49:39

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And for her, I think once she gets away physically,she's going to be so busy with school and workthat she'll be able to detach more easily.

    • 49:49

      SHANNON B. DERMER: So do you see them continuingto work on the "I'm Right"?What's the name of the pattern?

    • 49:55

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh, yeah.Absolutely.What I love is that mother has reallyintegrated all the messages.And she works very hard to implement everythingthat we talk about.She's so aware, so mindful.It is like a neon sign in her head.

    • 50:17

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 50:17

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And I thoughtthey did a brilliant job at taking a standand frustrating that "I'm Right" pattern.

    • 50:23

      SHANNON B. DERMER: I know.

    • 50:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Both of them.

    • 50:24

      SHANNON B. DERMER: They did.They did.It's nice to have cooperative clients.Well, yes, they all cooperate in their own way.But it's nice when they cooperate in the first try.

    • 50:32


    • 50:33

      SHANNON B. DERMER: But yeah, so you see them in the futurefollowing through maybe on that plan that mom and the youngerdaughter will move, whether that's to Arizona or Texas.And that Lydia will follow throughon her plans for college and moving in with her boyfriendand maybe will have learned some things from this process where

    • 50:54

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: she won't get caught in some of the same patternsthat maybe her mom has?

    • 50:56

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, I alsothink that in checking with mom about howthe relationship's going with Steve,I think it's an opportunity for them to work togetheraround these two projects.One is how we could continue to try and be more civil with oneanother so that we model for the kidsthat they don't have to worry about us

    • 51:18

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: and be more clear about what their plans are with them.So they don't have to worry as much.And also, really helping support the young couple's efforts,optimizing their success out therewith a budget and strategy.And I think it's great that they'regoing out there next month.

    • 51:36

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Starting to prepare?

    • 51:38


    • 51:38

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 51:39

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah.One of the themes in today's sessionwas it's something along the lines of stop and listento myself so I know what to do.

    • 51:51


    • 51:52

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And that themewas pervasive throughout this whole sessionboth for mom and Lydia.They're able to step themselves and reflect and think about,what was talked about in the session and do it.

    • 52:08

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 52:09

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: You know?

    • 52:10

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.Yeah I hadn't really thought about it that way.But as soon as you said that, Yeah.Because especially Raquel mentioned that a few times.Well, I thought about what you said.Or I thought about the pattern.And then I just did different.

    • 52:22


    • 52:23

      SHANNON B. DERMER: That she was, I think,you used the word mindful.So you're so you're more mindful of that.

    • 52:28


    • 52:29

      SHANNON B. DERMER: And yeah, it's like sometimesif people could just press the pause button a little bit,then they can do more of what they want to do instead whatthey're just used to doing.

    • 52:38


    • 52:39

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 52:40

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And even whenthere was a hiccup or a slip, theywere able to rebound quickly and get back on track.Both of them, actually, which was great.

    • 52:50

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Well, and I like how you phrase that.It's little bit of a hiccup, that it's not necessarilya setback.Although it could be, but that thatdoesn't have to be permanent.It's just something in that gets in the way a little bit.And then you get back on track.Do you do that on purpose?

    • 53:06

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Absolutely.There's many variations on a theme.Some people say, change is three steps forward, two steps backin a solution-focused way.Which I did say in there.I see slips as opportunities for comeback practice, as valuable

    • 53:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: sages, like teachers, teaching uswhere we need to reflect and thinkabout what our options are.Or what we should do that I've alreadydone before that worked.So we can learn from slips.Slips are not bad things.They're actually good things.They keep us honest.

    • 53:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: They keep us on our toes.They keep us flexible, and open minded.

    • 53:51

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah, I know we talked about thata little bit last time.And it was interesting.Just in the past week I was fillingin for someone for a class.And they were playing a game for extra credit, like Jeopardy.And a lot of the people in the classwere hesitating to answer because theydidn't want to be wrong.And there was a guy who answered.And he was wrong for his team.It was an incorrect answer.And people were like, oh.

    • 54:11

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: And he said, you know what?There's nothing wrong with having an incorrect answersometimes.He's like, at least I tried.And he's like, there's nothing wrong with it.

    • 54:18


    • 54:19

      SHANNON B. DERMER: And it's true.Sometimes we think oh slip ups are badOr an incorrect answer is bad.But you can learn from them.

    • 54:25

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Failure is a good thing.And it's better to fail early, in the early goingof treatment, so that we can learn from that experience.That's why I said, I think the last timethat we were together, that when a client does not implementa proposed or offered change strategy, that'scommunication about hey, maybe we're moving too fast.Maybe they're not ready for this.But it's positive communication to us

    • 54:47

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: that maybe we need to slow down.Maybe we need to check in with a client.Maybe the goals have shifted.Maybe we have a new focus.

    • 54:55

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.And if they have a slight detour,then it's nice because they have that support of youand the process and how they can learn from it.

    • 55:04


    • 55:05

      SHANNON B. DERMER: And actually, theyseemed really open to learning and pretty self reflective.I've actually been a little surprised.Because a 18-year-old and her mother,usually they'd be like ah!

    • 55:14

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah.The one thing that maybe I'll ask them the next time,that I forgot to ask is asking themwhat their consultation fee is as a family, a mother daughterteam?If I have another mother and daughterjust like them in my office, what advicewould they have for them?And what's nice about that kind of question is itoffers them an opportunity to consolidate their gains

    • 55:34

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: and remind themselves about what works.

    • 55:37

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Well, it's actually interesting.Because that reminds me of some of the narrativetechniques of sometimes with kids.But I think it works really well with adults too,and a teenager, is they create a little how-to bookthat they give you permission to use with maybeanother mother daughter group, that narrative approach.And it'd be interesting.

    • 55:58

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: I was actually surprised.Although maybe I should've been surprised,how much, Lydia was able to step back and give creditto her mother.

    • 56:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Oh it was awesome.

    • 56:09

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah, she was like oh yeah,well I notice my mom doing this.And I notice my mom doing that.All these positive instead of these negative things.

    • 56:15

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And certainly, thatwould've been worth a compliment.I think that it's very unusual to have an older teen who iscomplimentary of their parent.Usually they're bashing their parentsfor all their mistakes and misdeeds.

    • 56:31

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.No, it was nice.And actually, you mentioned compliments.I actually noticed you complimenting a lot,obviously, throughout the session.Will you say a little bit about what the role of complimentsare in your approach?

    • 56:45

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, it's a way to punctuate any growthsteps, helpful ideas clients have self generated,change steps to honor it, celebrate it.But punctuating as a step in a more preferred direction,

    • 57:06

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: a direction that they find more workable or less stressful.So I think compliments are good things.Because it also fosters a cooperative relationship.Everybody likes a compliment.Most people that have been in therapy before, the focus hasbeen on problems and what's wrong and doing an excavation

    • 57:28

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: dig.This is about finding out what's right with peopleand their goodness and their giftsand celebrating those and holding them up.And it makes people feel good.It triggers positive emotion, which utilizesnegative emotions and thoughts.So there's lots of good reasons for complimenting.

    • 57:46

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Well, good.What would you say to-- I think, sometimes--especially beginning counselors or therapists whoare worried that oh, if I give compliments itcould come off as insincere and I know sometimes the solutionfocus, they call it cheerleading.And I think sometimes that word turns people off.Although I think it's great to have cheerleaders.

    • 58:08

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: But what would you say to people whowould be uncomfortable with that approach of complimentingand cheerleading and things like that?

    • 58:14

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, you don't wantto do an overkill of anything.It's like reframing.If you reframe to death, clients are thinking you're sarcasticor you're not taking their problem serious enough.So the complements are always connected to some positive stepthat the client took.And it can take many shapes or forms.It's not just action steps.

    • 58:35

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: It's ways of thinking and feelingthat seem to be making a difference for them.So every compliment I give is in linewith punctuating their growth steps.It's not just showering them with complimentsfor the sake of showering them.

    • 58:50

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Right, it's sincere.It's authentic.It's tied to actual things they did,not just showering them with compliments.It's actually, like you said, highlighting or punctuatingthings that they actually took an effort to do.Or sometimes making them notice thingsthat they didn't notice the effort that it took to do it.

    • 59:09

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right.I mean, there were a couple placesin the session where I was highlighting differencesdeliberately.What did you used to do in that situation?And to me, I think these two have reallygained a lot of insight about what worksand what to steer clear from.That's imprinted in their minds, those tapes.

    • 59:28

      SHANNON B. DERMER: They have.I noticed that you asked them what have younoticed that's changed so far?And they are able to answer that.And you do see with both of them,but especially with Lydia, she gets that smile and her facestarts to glow when she talks about well, certainlyher boyfriend.But when she talks about some of the changes that they've made

    • 59:48

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: and I don't think she used the word proud.But I got the sense that she was proud of herself and her momfor some of the changes that they made.

    • 59:56

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, And thatwas another offshoot of this ritual that they did.Because it really put them in a teamshipplace, where they had to work together.And it seemed to even improve their communications a bit.They were talking more about even some heavy things.

    • 01:00:18

      SHANNON B. DERMER: I also noticed a few timesthere was some talk about feelings.How do feelings fit with your approach?

    • 01:00:27

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, quite frankly, I'm a feelings person.And I think that feelings are also exceptions.That when people start doing things differently, not onlydo they think differently about the viewing changes,but also their feelings change as well.

    • 01:00:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: There's more warmth.There's more positive emotion.And I think that's the healing aspect of this,that people also recognize how much theyhave in their relationships.Like these two are so close.They have such a loving relationship.And Lydia is such a sweet kid and so caring and so sensitive.

    • 01:01:11

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And mom, obviously, is the same.So I think that having people talk about how they're feelingdifferently is also important.It's not just about behavior.A lot of people criticize solution-based modelsbecause this is a behaviorist approach.

    • 01:01:32

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: But exceptions are also thinking and feeling differently.

    • 01:01:37

      SHANNON B. DERMER: So there's nothing against strength-basedor solution-focused approaches that you cannot integratefeelings?

    • 01:01:43


    • 01:01:44

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:01:44

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Right.But I'm not going to get into tell mehow you feel about that, like a psychodynamic way of doing it.But asking as a result of a big positive stepthat a family member, how did thatmake you feel differently as a mom in relationshipto Lydia, when you were able to pull that off?

    • 01:02:04

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:02:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Something like that.

    • 01:02:06

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Nice.One of the other things I noticedwas there's a little bit of an incongruence between how,maybe, Raquel and her husband's childrenview their arguing or their relationshipand how Raquel and her husband view it.So for example, Lydia seems to be bothered, sometimes,

    • 01:02:29

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: by the fighting or arguing between her parents.But Raquel said, well, we fight.And then five minutes later we're fine.But her kids aren't viewing it as fine.

    • 01:02:40

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, it's interestingbecause I do think that Lydia hasbeen like the resident marriage counselor.And I'm sure that there's been times.Well, the dad has come to her about the divorce situation.It was a heavy load to drop on her.But I'm sure the mom has also said to herto try and be protective, that dad and I are

    • 01:03:01

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: going to get into it sometimes.But I wanted them to be more clear about whattheir game plan is here.And that the girls should not haveto allow this to worry them so much that it's havinga negative effect on them.That here's how they see it and what their plans are.

    • 01:03:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: And a clear joint message, I thoughtthat would be really helpful for them to do that.So that she can, like, detach more, basically.

    • 01:03:32

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.And you know, that message you'vebeen giving over and over again, yes youcan care about your parents.But that's their relationship.And theirs to take care of.And you need to take care of your plansand your relationship.But it was sweet and a little sad, I think,when she said when my dad said that to me, I'dalways thought about it.

    • 01:03:53

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: But it was very different to hear him actually say it.

    • 01:03:56


    • 01:03:58

      SHANNON B. DERMER: But also, it's the reality.They may stay together.They may not.There's some hard choices that dadwould have to make in that his aging mother is hereand he wants to take care of her.And it doesn't mean he doesn't care about the family.But he has some hard choices.

    • 01:04:15

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, And I thinkthat that's why I wanted to talk with Lydia about if they decideto do that, how are you going to deal with that?And it's nice to know that Luke wasvery supportive, very sweet.And that she does have family on both sides out there.So there's really adequate support.

    • 01:04:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: But I think it'll be helpful if these two canget their acts together enough that while they do spend timeunder the same roof together, they tryand not get into swearing and arguing.

    • 01:04:47

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:04:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And allow herto finish strong so that she can launch out and so canthe other daughter and not be so entangledin this drama over here.

    • 01:04:58

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:04:59

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: That's why I felt that weneeded to cover that base.

    • 01:05:02

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:05:03

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And it's interestinghow my "I'm Right" pattern is very mucha part of this drama over here.

    • 01:05:13

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yes, it's a part of several dramas.But at the same time, I did notice you pointing outto the family a little bit.And I'm not sure.Raquel was starting to realize it.But I'm not sure if she's quite there yetbecause people want to see change for a whilebefore they truly believe it.Although she can't control her husband,

    • 01:05:33

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: that some of her changes did seemto start to be influencing him?

    • 01:05:37

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Yeah, she noticed that actually.

    • 01:05:39

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah, she said,oh I do notice that he has been a little bit more calmor we've talked a little bit more.But how much will you highlight or nothighlight that that is connected to some of the "I'm Right"changes, or maybe some of the other changesthat she and her daughter are making?That their patterns influence other people?

    • 01:05:60

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I think I'vetried to do that last week and this week a bit.When I introduced talking about the experiment,we're talking about how it's sort of like a domino effectand all the relationships are affected by this.But I think it's interesting.When she would talk about things that she did in relationship

    • 01:06:22

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: to her husband, she was very mindful of the "I'm Right"pattern trying to get the best of her.And she was able to do some mental gymnastics and shiftgears and not give it what it wanted.

    • 01:06:35

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:06:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And that was, for them, to get into it.

    • 01:06:38

      SHANNON B. DERMER: She's a smart cookie.She outsmarted the pattern.We just have a couple minutes left.But there's one thing I wanted to say.And that is I've sometimes talkedto supervisees about that sometimes good therapy isactually boring therapy.And I'm not saying your process is boring.

    • 01:06:59

      SHANNON B. DERMER [continued]: But.It's not throwing cups at each other's headsor screaming and yelling.So what's that like?Is that good therapy, then, that they are able to just be calmand you don't have these huge fightsin the middle of session?

    • 01:07:15

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Well, I think that I always look.I pay close attention to the nonverbalsand of course, reports from the clients.And they seem much more relaxed with one another.It's a much more relaxed atmosphere.

    • 01:07:36

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: It's not so much that it's boring.But you see, this is an unnatural set up.So if this were in my office, last weekwe would have had a vacation from counseling.

    • 01:07:48

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Right.

    • 01:07:48

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And asked them, when would youlike to come back?In one or two weeks?Or two or three weeks?And then they would have picked it.And we probably would have continuedto have longer time intervals until the very last session.And then we would wrap up.That's why I introduced the whole idea of where would yougo for a vacation?

    • 01:08:02

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Right.

    • 01:08:03

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: And then the crystalball, what they'll be doing on the vacation thing.But I do pay close attention to the nonverbals and the reports.And if I'm picking up on some strange affect there,like somebody looks a little troubled or something.Like, for example, there was a pointin the session where Lydia looked a little troubled when

    • 01:08:24

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: I asked her, did you make it up to the nine?And she said, no.I'm probably still where I'm at.And I asked a nine minus or an eight plus?And I think she went with an eight plus.But she wasn't feeling well.That was one thing that was going on here.But she also talked about getting a little lead

    • 01:08:46

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN [continued]: footed, which I think is great.I talk about maturity, where she'sable to step outside of herself and say,I could have done that better.Or I slipped up or whatever.So she owned it.

    • 01:08:57

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:08:58

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: I thought that was great.I get kids in my offices, it's all your fault.You, you, you, you guys.

    • 01:09:03

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:09:04

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: You know?And she's just not like that.She's an angel.

    • 01:09:07

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Yeah.

    • 01:09:07

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: She really is.She's a great kid.

    • 01:09:09

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Well, I look forwardin the next-- we have I think-- two more sessions.

    • 01:09:12

      MATTHEW D. SELEKMAN: Two more.

    • 01:09:12

      SHANNON B. DERMER: To seeing you helping them solidifytheir path towards these goals.

    • 01:09:16


    • 01:09:18

      SHANNON B. DERMER: Thank you.

    • 01:09:19


Brief, Strengths-Based, Collaborative Therapy: Session 3

View Segments Segment :


Over the course of five counseling sessions, Matthew Selekman works with Raquel and Lydia, a mother–daughter duo who have come to therapy to discuss some bumps in the road as the family is transitioning through a typical developmental stage—Lydia moving from the end of adolescence and into young adulthood, which includes attending community college and moving in with her boyfriend. Selekman works with the mother and daughter to see what successes they have already had and how they will continue to capitalize on their strengths into the future. They work on avoiding the “I’m right, you’re wrong” pattern and de-escalating typical blowups in the family. Selekman works with the mother and daughter together in the first session. In subsequent sessions, he begins with both clients together for the first 20 minutes and then works individually with each person for the last part of the session. Matthew Selekman is a licensed clinical social worker and founder and director of Partners for Collaborative Solutions, based in Chicago. He is the author of numerous family therapy articles and seven professional books. His eighth book, Working With High-Risk Adolescents: An Individualized Family Therapy Approach, is due out in December 2015. He works with clients in his private practice from a brief, collaborative, postmodern strengths-based perspective. He believes that all clients have the strengths, resources, and self-healing capacities to change and are the experts with their own life situations. His expertise as a therapist is in tapping his clients’ strengths to coconstruct solutions together. Complete Counseling: From First to Last Session takes the viewer through five sessions with the same client. Viewers will witness how clients change from session to session, how the approach to treatment changes over time, and how various therapeutic interventions are applied in different situations.

Brief, Strengths-Based, Collaborative Therapy: Session 3

Over the course of five counseling sessions, Matthew Selekman works with Raquel and Lydia, a mother–daughter duo who have come to therapy to discuss some bumps in the road as the family is transitioning through a typical developmental stage—Lydia moving from the end of adolescence and into young adulthood, which includes attending community college and moving in with her boyfriend. Selekman works with the mother and daughter to see what successes they have already had and how they will continue to capitalize on their strengths into the future. They work on avoiding the “I’m right, you’re wrong” pattern and de-escalating typical blowups in the family. Selekman works with the mother and daughter together in the first session. In subsequent sessions, he begins with both clients together for the first 20 minutes and then works individually with each person for the last part of the session. Matthew Selekman is a licensed clinical social worker and founder and director of Partners for Collaborative Solutions, based in Chicago. He is the author of numerous family therapy articles and seven professional books. His eighth book, Working With High-Risk Adolescents: An Individualized Family Therapy Approach, is due out in December 2015. He works with clients in his private practice from a brief, collaborative, postmodern strengths-based perspective. He believes that all clients have the strengths, resources, and self-healing capacities to change and are the experts with their own life situations. His expertise as a therapist is in tapping his clients’ strengths to coconstruct solutions together. Complete Counseling: From First to Last Session takes the viewer through five sessions with the same client. Viewers will witness how clients change from session to session, how the approach to treatment changes over time, and how various therapeutic interventions are applied in different situations.

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