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Oficinas Psicoterapêuticas em adolescentes com comportamento autolesivo: Uma proposta de intervenção [Psychotherapeutic Workshops in adolescents with self-injurious behavior: an intervention proposal]

FERREIRA, L.S.  Oficinas Psicoterapêuticas em adolescentes com comportamento autolesivo: Uma proposta de intervenção [Psychotherapeutic Workshops in adolescents with self-injurious behavior: an intervention proposal]. 293 p. Doctoral Thesis – Instituto de Psicologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, 2022. 

Available on: https://doi.org/10.11606/T.47.2022.tde-12092022-082451 

Abstract: The present study focuses on adolescence, particularly the self-injurious behavior presented by participants of this phase, starting from the conception that this is a development stage marked by important biopsychosocial changes and conflicts characteristic of this phase, fundamental for the process of building adult identity. Based on data from the literature and clinical experience, it can be observed that identity is structured more satisfactorily when it’s possible for the adolescent to live in a sufficiently good environment. In cases where adolescent conflicts are associated with a fragile environment, some behaviors suggestive of suffering and risk can be evidenced, such as self-destructive actions, including self-injurious behaviors. Current research shows an increase in cases of self-injury in adolescents and the need of research on this behavior, thus justifying studies focusing on self-injury and the discussion of a viable interventional proposal aimed at adolescents. To meet those needs, the objective of this study was, from the understanding of self-injurious behavior in adolescents, to propose Psychotherapeutic Workshops in groups as a form of intervention. The groups were inclusive with the participation of six adolescents, between 14 and 15 years old, that manifested self-injurious behavior and participants with other manifestations. The research was developed based on Quantitative Methods in Clinical Research focused especially on six adolescents with self-injurious behaviors, separated into two groups: one attended in person at a Citizenship Integration Center (CIC) in the city of São Paulo and the other carried out in remotely, Telepsychology, through video-calls applications. Initially, the Comprehensive Psychodiagnostics process was carried out using the following instruments: interview with the guardians and individual interviews with the adolescents, the Quality of Life Scale (QOLS), the Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI) and the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI). After this stage, the adolescents, along with other participants, were invited to join the Psychotherapeutic Workshops, held in twelve weekly meetings. In the first meeting, The Thematic Drawing-and-Story Procedure was requested with the theme “draw a teenager in São Paulo today”. The following sessions were carried out based on the materiality of the drawings, paintings, collages, images, music, and videos. At the end of the meetings, individual feedback interviews were carried out and the instruments were reapplied to them. The data found in the Comprehensive Psychodiagnosis confirmed the correlation between the self-injurious behavior in adolescents and impairment in their quality of life, mainly related to family issues, presence of depressive and anxious symptoms and conflicting situations in the school and social environment. The Psychotherapeutic Workshops provided a Potential Space in which the spontaneous gestures of the adolescents were welcomed through the holding space within the group, allowing the adolescents to feel alive, heard and to spontaneously express themselves, getting in touch with their anxieties, conflicts and creatively starting their elaboration process. The feedback interviews at the end of the process made it possible to observe that the Psychotherapeutic Workshops enabled emotional relief and reduction in acting out behaviors. Given what has been said, it’s concluded that the Psychotherapeutic Workshops provided mutative experiences in the adolescents from both groups through materiality as a form of expression and communication, contributing to emotional maturation and thus greater self-integration, using more adequate and effective defense mechanisms, reducing self-injurious behavior. Therefore, it’s considered that the research contemplated its proposed goals, contributing to the understanding of self-injurious behavior and to the development of a psychotherapeutic proposal to be applied with adolescents. It’s expected that this research gives rise to others on the same theme.

Walter Trinca Copyright 2001 – All rights reserved.

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