October 15, 2009 04:06 by Rob
Therapy is not isolated to the proverbial “office” with a couch and therapist chair where insight is verbally exchanged to the client. Profound change is not relegated to the cognitive discourse which therapist and client so harmoniously engage. It is the power from which experiences create change that residential treatment can be so impactful and life altering.
Experiences are defined as: To know: to have firsthand knowledge of emotions, sensations, or situations (Webster 2008). The phrase "I have lived through … and know the feeling!” expresses the authenticity and undeniable impact of an experience on a person’s emotional and psychological makeup. This type of authentic change is the focus of the residential experience at Calo. Every aspect of residential life at Calo is designed to create constant opportunities which provide the emotions, sensations, and situations that can alter the student’s perception of himself, relationships, and intimacy in powerful ways. These therapeutic experiences facilitate the student in being able to actually say, “I have lived through…(authentic change)… and know the feeling (of being valuable, loved, accepted, and worthy).
The therapeutic experience at Calo is constant and is reinforced by the relationship with the therapist. The therapist is an active part of creating experiences which enable to student and family to “live” what it means to be truly heard, empathized with, and valued. The significance of this therapeutic relationship is exponentially increased through the student’s and therapist experience of interacting in the milieu, exchanging in therapy groups, modeling connection, and meeting the student in the very place that they are struggling (school, canines, recreation therapy, stewardships, etc.).
The experience at Calo is uniquely dynamic and impactful. Students and families receive the opportunity to live the change that they so desperately need through the experience of relationship.