Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: June 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963978 | Print ISBN: 9781412909280 | Online ISBN: 9781412963978| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
J. Jeffries McWhirter
Group therapy is a form of psychotherapy where one or more therapists treat a small group of clients together. Group therapy, like individual psychotherapy, is intended to help people who would like to improve their ability to cope with difficulties and problems in their lives. The therapist uses the emotional interactions of the group members to help them get relief from distress and modify their behavior. The aim of group psychotherapy is to help with solving the emotional difficulties and to encourage the intra- and interpersonal development of the participants in the group. At least 3, and usually more, group members are necessary to establish the critical mass that allows the types of interactions that give the psychotherapy group its unique character. From 6 to 10 members is considered an ideal number, and 13 or more are too many. With too many members, it is impossible to create a therapeutic ...