Monday, October 26, 2009


I was so eager to attend a workshop on "family counseling" because of the family problems concerning my counselees. For instance, what to do with a family with bipolar members, or how to engage in mother-daughter dialogue to patch up "generational gaps" in the family, or to reduce instances of violence in the homes (emotional abuse), or how an "alternative" (lesbian couples with children) family be counseled in cases of sexual abuse of their children by a "religious" person. Those were just several problems I encountered that challenged me to know more about family counseling.

But to my dismay, the workshop began and ended with 'pre-school' songs. I do not mean to disparage the competence of the speaker but most of us were working with elementary, high school and college students and as I noted above we encountered very difficult problems concerning families at present. One of the most articulated was the 'cyberspace addiction'. The session could have been salvaged from deterioration but nobody from the organizers intervened. (Perhaps, neither one of us had the courage to voice out because the speaker was one of the board members.)

Though I salvaged a little from her input like that of the different births a person need to undergo (physical, psychological, mental, spiritual). Though I hated it when the speaker recounted that one of her counselees 'killed' (induced abortion) her fetus. Such a conservative stance! She also gave us a hand-out about different types of "dysfunctional" families (e.g. detached, disengaged) but she never elaborated on the dynamics of those families.

I heard from one of my co-participants that perhaps the speaker, being old, was rattled by the barrage of questions from the participants so she "forgot" all about her lecture; though, that maybe one of the reasons. I surmised that the speaker is in her 'religious' mode that she only wants us to feel "love, smile, heaven and God" that she forgot that there are realities that must be addressed head on before one can actually feel love, smile, heaven and God. I myself hope that someday I will age gracefully, still grounded as well as feeling peaceful and heavenly.

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