College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

The Therapeutic Frame Revisited: A Contemporary Perspective

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Summer 1989

Publication Title

Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training

ISSN

0033-3204

Volume

26

Issue/No.

2

Abstract

Argues that since it was first proposed, the therapeutic "frame" has been widely adopted in a relatively unquestioned manner despite major modifications in clinical theory and practice. A reexamination of the frame from a contemporary perspective is presented. While traditional conceptions of the frame emphasize its function for the client, it is argued that this structure also serves a crucial purpose for the therapist. By minimizing the opportunity for self-indulgence (e.g., by fostering abstinence, anonymity, and neutrality), the frame enables the clinician to maintain a therapeutic stance and to create an environment that fosters comprehension of the client.

DOI

10.1037/h0085415

Peer Reviewed

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