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  • Writer's pictureDeric Hollings

Confrontation in REBT

 

Over the years of practicing Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), I’ve come to understand that people often misinterpret the process of psychotherapeutic confrontation. I now think I comprehend why this may be the case.

 

In common parlance, confrontation may be defined as a hostile or argumentative meeting or situation between opposing parties. Therefore, challenge within the framework of mental, emotional, and behavioral health care can be interpreted as an unpleasant ordeal.

 

When encountering client apprehension regarding confrontation, I use psychoeducation to inform people that when disputing the irrational beliefs which cause unpleasant consequences, I’m not challenging clients themselves. We are not our beliefs.

 

Likewise, when disputation occurs with the ABC model of REBT, I’m not challenging an activating event. Disputing whether or not an action occurs is as absurd as challenging the notion as to whether not fire is hot. Therefore, there is no confrontation about the activating event.

 

Equally, while disputing, I’m not challenging an individual’s consequences which are generated by irrational beliefs. If a person experiences unpleasant emotions or bodily sensations and behaves in an unproductive manner as a result of unhelpful assumptions, I don’t dispute these outcome effects.

 

To be clear, I don’t confront the individual, activating events, or consequences of unfavorable beliefs. Rather, confrontation in REBT occurs when beliefs related to demandingness, awfulizing, low frustration tolerance, and global evaluations are disputed.

 

Regarding this matter, page 70 of The REBT Therapist’s Pocket Companion invites REBT practitioners to assertively confront inconsistencies and contradictions in client statements, and to do so with care and sensitivity. I hope to accomplish this in my practice of REBT.

 

As long as clients understand that confrontation in REBT isn’t an assault on them, and they don’t use inflexible beliefs regarding how their unhelpful attitudes shouldn’t be confronted, the therapeutic alliance can be strong enough to tolerate confrontation. Given this understanding, how might you handle psychotherapeutic confrontation?

 

If you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life—helping you to sharpen your critical thinking skills, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.

 

As a psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues ranging from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.

 

At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!

 

 

Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW


 

References:

 

Dryden, W. and Neenan, M. (2003). The REBT Therapist’s Pocket Companion. Albert Ellis Institute. ISBN 0-917476-26-3. Library of Congress Control Number: 20031044378

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Blog – Categories: Disputation. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/blog/categories/disputation

Hollings, D. (2022, October 31). Demandingness. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/demandingness

Hollings, D. (2022, March 15). Disclaimer. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/disclaimer

Hollings, D. (2023, September 8). Fair use. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/fair-use

Hollings, D. (2023, October 12). Get better. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/get-better

Hollings, D. (2023, September 13). Global evaluations. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/global-evaluations

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Hollings Therapy, LLC [Official website]. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/

Hollings, D. (2023, May 18). Irrational beliefs. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/irrational-beliefs

Hollings, D. (2023, September 19). Life coaching. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/life-coaching

Hollings, D. (2022, December 2). Low frustration tolerance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/low-frustration-tolerance

Hollings, D. (2024, January 1). Psychoeducation. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/psychoeducation

Hollings, D. (2022, March 24). Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT). Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/rational-emotive-behavior-therapy-rebt

Hollings, D. (2022, October 7). Should, must, and ought. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/should-must-and-ought

Hollings, D. (2022, November 9). The ABC model. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-abc-model

Hollings, D. (2024, January 11). Therapeutic alliance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/therapeutic-alliance

Hollings, D. (2023, February 16). Tna. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/tna

Hollings, D. (2022, November 15). To don a hat. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/to-don-a-hat

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