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The experience of attaining respect in the face of differences Best, Heather M.G. 1997

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THE EXPERIENCE OF ATTAINING RESPECT IN THE FACE OF DIFFERENCES by HEATHER M. G. BEST B. A., University of Alberta, 1973 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Counselling Psychology) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA October, 1997 © Heather M. G. Best, 1997 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree, that permission for extensive copying, of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of (LhS-fAna %to>h(rfo~ The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada •ate r m . / j / , 7 DE-6 (2/88) 11 Abstract This study to examines the experience of attaining respect in the face of differences through the eyes of eight North American Caucasian members of the helping professions. A hermeneutic- phenomenological, multiple case study design using an interview guide approach was the methodology chosen to describe the co-researchers' experience of respect — what it is, and how to attain respect when it is lost. During audio-taped interviews, the co-researchers related stories of times when they had to struggle to be respectful. After relating the stories they were asked for their thoughts on the meaning of respect. The analysis revealed a six step non-linear process of becoming respectful. The themes involved in the process are the trigger event, the reaction, stopping the reaction, shift in focus to examine one's self, acceptance of self, looking again at the other, acceptance of the other and the outcome behaviour. Intrinsically involved in the process were concepts of identity, self respect, boundaries, context, and expectations. These themes were simultaneously foundational and integral to the process themes. The study compares the philosophical definitions of respect, Rogers' concept of unconditional positive regard the co-researchers' conceptions of respect and their lived experience finding a core consensus. iii TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract ii Table of Contents iii List of Figures v Acknowledgments vi CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION 1 Statement of the Problem 1 Rationale 5 Personal Reflections 6 CHAPTER 11. REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE 9 Psychological Literature Review 9 Philosophical Literature Review 10 CHAPTER IH. RESEARCH METHODOLOGY 20 Research Design Rationale 20 Quantitative versus Qualitative Approach to the Research Question 20 Case Study Hermeneutic-Phenomenological Method 26 Phenomenography 29 Reliability, Validity and Generalizability 32 Procedures: The Method Followed in the Present Study 36 Co-researchers 36 Data Collection: The Interview 38 Data Analysis 39 CHAPTER IV. ANALYSIS OF THE DATA 42 The Intrinsic Themes 46 Identity, Self Respect and Boundaries 46 Identity 47 Self Respect 49 Boundaries 50 Context 54 Meanings of Respect Drawn from the Interviews 57 Transcendent Respect 55 Appraisal Respect 56 iv The Process Themes 59 The Trigger 59 The Reaction 60 Emotional Reaction 60 Unmet Expectations 60 The Judgment 63 The Behavioural Reaction 64 Stop 65 The Shift Response 67 Re-viewing the Self and Re-viewing the Other Person 67 Acceptance 71 Outcome 72 Intrinsic Themes Continued 76 Conceptions of Respect Drawn from the Interviews 76 Appraisal Respect 76 Transcendent Respect 78 Summary 82 CHAPTER V. DISCUSSION 79 Conclusions 87 Implications for Theory 91 Study Limitations and Future Research 91 Implications for Counselling 93 Summary 95 REFERENCES 97 APPENDIX A: Initial Letter of Contact 102 APPENDIX B: Consent Form 103 APPENDIX C: Transcripts of Interviews 104 Helen 104 Jack 111 Mary 118 Leonard 133 Irene 150 Norman 163 Pamela 172 V LIST OF FIGURES FIGURE 1: The Interaction of Identity, Self Respect and Boundaries FIGURE 2: Reaction to Unmet Expectations FIGURE 3: Continuum of Outcome Responses FIGURE 4: Attaining Respect 51 64 73 81 vi Acknowledgments I would like, first, to thank the men and women who participated as co-researchers in this study. The open and honest sharing of their experiences and thoughts are the foundation of this research. Secondly, I would like to express gratitude to the members of my committee — to Marv Westwood, my supervisor, who encouraged me to tackle a conceptual study with a spiritual component that was close to my heart, and for his support in my times of doubt; to Larry Cochran, who helped me find a methodology to suit the project; and a special thanks to Shauna Butterwick, the external committee member, for help at all stages of the research, in both critiquing my work and in conversations that clarified the concepts. I am grateful to Baba Hari Dass, my spiritual guide, for his compassionate teachings on egolessness that inspired me and gave form to my thoughts. Beyond that Babaji was always, and without fail, a model of respect and compassion towards all. It has been an interesting chapter in my life that has enriched old friendships and brought me many new friends, whose support and encouragement helped in so many ways. Their interest and enlivening conversations provided me with insights and challenge that enriched my understanding. Love and appreciation to my children, Ian, Naomi, Eben and Sean who encouraged me, and were proud of my taking on graduate school at the same time they were beginning post-secondary education. They contributed in ways too numerous to mention — spiritually, emotionally and practically and as teachers. Thank you. 1 CHAPTER I Introduction Statement of the Problem ... respect also figures in much recent discussion of more specific moral problems such as racism or sexism. For example, it is argued that various ways of regarding and behaving toward others, and social arrangements that encourage those ways, are inconsistent with the respect to which all persons are entitled. (Darwall, 1977, p.36) The word respect is frequently used to identify a kaleidoscope of behaviours, feelings and meanings. The multiplicity of meanings opens the way to misunderstanding as well as posing difficulties in regarding respect as a defined construct. In the psychotherapy literature, therapists are encouraged to respect the people with whom we work (Egan, 1990; Harre, 1980; Ishiyama & Westwood, 1992; Parham, 1993); Mozdzierz, & Greenblatt, (1994)), yet there is no discussion or definition of what respect entails. In Rogers' (1951) early work, he stated that the primary component of philosophical orientation of a counsellor is to see the client as having worth and dignity in his or her own right. "Is our philosophy one in which respect for the individual is uppermost? ... Are we willing for the individual to select and choose his own values, or are our actions guided by the conviction(usually unspoken) that he would be happiest if he permitted us to select for him his values and standards and goals? ... by use of client-centered techniques, a person can implement his respect for others only so far as that respect is an integral part of his personality make-up."( p. 20-21) Later, Rogers (Rogers & Stevens, 1962) modified the nomenclature of this concept as the need for the therapist to exhibit unconditional positive regard toward the client in order for change to occur. In his description of unconditional positive regard Rogers states: "It 2 involves an open willingness for the client to be whatever feelings are real in him at the moment... It means a kind of love for the client as he is... It respects the other person as a separate individual... (p. 94). In a later work, Rogers talks about unconditional positive regard as the therapist communicating "to his client a deep and genuine caring for him as a person with human potentialities, a caring uncontaminated by evaluation of his thoughts, feelings or behaviours." (Rogers, 1967, p. 103) Truax, while conducting research under Rogers, defined a rating scale of UPR stating: "At stage 5, the therapist communicates unconditional positive regard without constriction. There is a deep respect for the patient's worth as a person and his rights as a free individual." (Truax in Rogers, 1967, p. 577) Respect, therefore, is regarded as a necessary component of effective counselling. This thesis seeks to explore the meaning of respect to practitioners in the context of their work. What is the experience of people in the helping professions who have had to grapple with their thoughts and emotions in order to remain respectful when encountering a client or patient who has an opposing and incompatible value system, behaviour or attitudes? What is the experience of maintaining respect or regaining respect when faced with differences in value systems between people? This research is interested in a more realistic approach in how to actualize respect. To this end , the writer will start with definitions of respect found in the dictionary. Etymology traces the English use of the word respect to the Latin re meaning back and specere meaning to look at. This original idea of the word, "to look back at," implies a second look. One interpretation I glean from this and which forms the backbone of this study, is that the first look sees a person through the eyes of one's own assumptive world and the 3 second look sees the world through the eyes of the other person. However, to look back at or to look at again was first used as a noun meaning honour, high regard, and esteem and later as a verb meaning to regard, consider, or take into account (Barnhart, 1988). Both meanings still exist today. Of the many definitions of respect in the Oxford English Dictionary (Simpson & Weiner,1989), three are relevant to the present discussion. The first, "Deferential or courteous attentions; actions expressive of respect for a person; politenesses, courtesies" (p. 733) is similar to what will be identified later as institutional respect. To express this type of respect, it is not necessary to have congruence between one's actions and feelings, and therefore is not a type of respect that inevitability reflects honesty and sincerity. The second definition, "To treat or regard with deference, esteem, or honour; to feel or show respect for" (p. 733), is further illuminated in the dictionary in a quotation by D'Israeli, "Who could imagine that such a patriot would not be respected even by his enemies?" (p. 733) Here, it appears that a person is respected for some having an attribute that is valued by another. This is similar to the kind of respect advanced by Kant in The Metaphysics of Morals (1797/1991) which will be addressed more fully in Chapter II. The final definition rendered here is the most appropriate to this study: "To treat with consideration; to refrain from injuring or interfering with; to spare" (p. 733). In this denotation, the positive attribute of consideration is expressed by the lack of negative or injurious action. There seems to be a chasm between the intellectual understanding of the definitions set forth and the experiential knowing of respect. 4 Integral to the concepts of respect as involving consideration and seeing the world from another person's point of view, is an awareness of the schema used to understand our own world and how that schema might be interfering with our ability to see the other person. The schema each person has is based on an ethnic culture and refined through a personal culture. One of the fundamental requirements of a therapist is to understand his or her own culture, to understand how their cultural values and biases affect the self and others, and to understand the ways in which people from diverse cultures are the same and how they are different at the same time (Pederson, & Ivey, 1993). Culture Defined In this proposal, culture is defined in a broad sense. Johnson (1990) defined culture as contextual patterns that fix meaning over time. An individual defines meaning for him or herself through a cultural context at both an individual and group level; and a group finds meaning for itself through its context, which is culture. Pedersen and Pedersen (1985) describe culture as "an integration of ideological and social system variables acting together in a kaleidoscope of changing patterns" (p. 53). Hall (1981) moves from the anthropological concept of culture as ".. .the way of life of a people, .. .the sum of their learned behaviour patterns, attitudes and material things." (p. 20) to a treatment of "culture in its entirety as a form of communication" (p. 28). Taken together, culture can be said to supply meaning to an individual about him or herself, and his or her interactions with a group, by supplying patterns with which to make sense of stimuli; and to be able to communicate with him or herself and others through the use of shared patterns. 5 Hall (1976) describes culture as functioning as a series of patterns or screens that provide a structure or context which people use to make sense of their world. Each pattern is one possible way to express a need. For example, in North America, people greet each other by shaking hands, in Japan people bow. Both patterns are expressing a need and one way of meeting that need; neither pattern is 'right.' Cultural patterns determine what we pay attention to and what we ignore. This patterning, which allows us to process large amounts of information without experiencing 'system overload,' is largely unconscious. In other words, culture acts like a super computer software program. Most of us are aware of the parts of the program we manipulate directly, but are unaware of how it works. The ontological basis for this research is that of constructed reality. Heidegger (in Kruger, 1984) describes dasein as a conscious way of being-in-the-world that proceeds our thinking about the world. Respect is a mental concept used to symbolize a particular experience or dasein. Lincoln and Guba (1985) define the ontology of constructed realities as "the meanings and wholeness derived from or ascribed to phenomena in order to make sense of them, organize them or reorganize a belief system.. ."(p. 84). Constructions are socially and experientially constructed and though subjective may be shared within cultures or even across cultures. The constructions are not 'true' in an absolutist sense. Truth is determined by consensus (Guba and Lincoln, 1994: Schwandt, 1994). Rationale This study will peruse a more specific understanding of the experience of respect, the conditions for the presence of respect and the limits of respect within specific individuals. 6 This could lead first to a cleaner definition of what respect is in psychotherapeutic literature and to the development of a theoretical model that in turn could lead to practical applications that could enable increased the levels of respect. As being respectful is a fundamental component of a competent therapist and healer, it would be helpful to have a clearer idea of the state of being referred to a respectful and some insights into how the participants worked with themselves to be respectful. Although this study focuses on the helping professions, an understanding of respect — what it is, what it is not and how people struggle to attain respect — could be applicable to the wider society especially in combating racism, prejudice and bigotry. It can not only lead to practical applications for counsellors and others in the helping professions but can lead to development of educational programs in schools that are seeking to promote the development of respect. Personal Reflections I think one of the reasons that respect has not been investigated is the difficulty of defining the phenomenon in relation to a context. When the context changes so does the concept of respect. Respect appears to be a transcendent phenomenon — one that is expressed in many ways and for many purposes. I do not expect to find clear boundaries and identifiable limits for this holistic phenomenon that is expressed through or uses simultaneously, the behavioural, cognitive, affective and spiritual domains. I think that there are no clear boundaries within respect — it is not a feeling, an idea or a behaviour separately but transcending all three at once. Likewise I think that there are no clear boundaries between obstacle respect and fear expressed outwardly as, for example, prejudice. At the other end of 7 the continuum I do not envisage a clear-cut categorization between respect and agape, a Christian concept of universal love, as opposed to the specific love of one person. Respect and agape flow into in one another fusing in an inseparable essence. Within this continuum I would like to look for the framework, the backbone on which the outer manifestations of honoring one another as equals rest. I suspect that more care respect (which comes from the tradition that expresses thought as the backbone of cultural rules) or unconditional positive regard (which comes from the tradition of examining the experience and finding words for it) is possible when a person has a more permeable cultural screen. That is, the more we can see from the point of view of the other, while at the same time acknowledging our own reality the more we are able to attain and maintain the essence of care respect My personal definition of and experience of respect is a way of being in the world while setting aside my world construction, values, and the judgments I make based on my construction and values, in order to listen to another as much as possible from their perspective of the world. This requires that I have a conscious awareness of my world construction and value system. This view is similar to the characteristics Sue & Sue (1990) states are attributes of a skilled counsellor: one who is culturally aware of his/her own heritage and to valuing and respecting differences, one who is aware of his/her own biases and how they may affect others, and one who is comfortable with differences between themselves and others in terms of race and beliefs. Though I cannot be aware of my whole construing system, I am aware that others will not share my system on a one-to-one 8 correlation. By setting my idea of the world aside as much as possible I 'make room' to see the world from the standpoint of the other. If I truly set aside my world view I have nothing to compare the other's world view with therefore I cannot judge their perspective. The non-judgmental aspect of respect is a distinguishing characteristic between respect and unconditional positive regard. In order for there to be a positive there must be a judgment. In responding to the other person, I can describe my world view, delineating it as only my perspective that suits me but may not suit the other person. This describing of my world view parallel to the other's view rather than imposed on the other's view allows 'space' for both. In this way I respect the other person as well as myself. 9 Chapter II - Literature Review Psychological Review There is a marked absence of research regarding the concept of respect in the psychological literature, though it is often cited as an attribute a therapist needs to have. For example: Conte, Ratto, Clutz and Karasu (1995) cite respect as a necessary characteristic for patient improvement; Green, & Bobele (1994) talk of the therapist's need to reevaluate their values in order to deal with clients in a respectful way; Conners & Melcher (1993) discuss how negative personal values of the therapist can have a deleterious effect on the therapist providing respectful help; and Fenchel & Purpura (1988) examine whether the training therapists receive helps or hinders the therapist's ability to see the patient in a respectful light. The few studies in psychological and sociological research that undertake an investigation of this variable either define it in its appraisal usage or do not define it at all (see the following studies for the lack of definition of terms: Coronado & Peake, 1992; Edwards, Boulet, Mahrer, Chagnon & Mook, 1982; Fernandez, 1991; Mann, Miatsui, Beswick, & Harmoni, 1994). It appears that there is a common assumption of the meaning of respect without any substantive basis in definition or research. If there is no psychological research or debate on the subject of respect, on what will this thesis be built? Early psychology researchers looked to philosophical discussion as a starting point. The same will be done here. 10 Philosophical Review An extensive search through the psychological, sociological, and anthropological literature failed to reveal any discussion of the meaning of respect. Philosophy is the only place in the literature where the concept is addressed. This part of the review briefly outlines some of the philosophical discourse on respect originating in Immanuel Kant's, Doctrine of Virtue (1797/1990). No attempt will be made here to specify the philosophical arguments behind the concepts mentioned nor to attempt such an argument myself. As I read the various philosophical debates on respect, I was aware that none of the ideas were new to me but the arrangement and logical order of the ideas described different worlds from which respect could be viewed. Mention is made of respect for admirable attributes, for status and authority, for fear of being injured, for another's point of view and lastly for basic humanness. The study will see which of these various perspectives of respect the co-researchers experience, or whether there experience adds yet another dimension. Philosophy uses reason and argument in seeking truth and knowledge about reality. Its cognitive approach toward the concept of respect includes the morality of respect but does not touch on a person's striving to attain or maintain respect in the face of challenging value differences. The philosophy of respect talks about the possibilities, the kinds, and the morality of various kinds of respect rather than the lived reality. However, the philosophical perspective, though not synonymous with the lived reality, does have close parallels to the lived reality. In the Doctrine of Virtue, Kant (1797/1991) presents a justice perspective of respect when he states that "The principle of mutual love admonishes men constantly to come closer to one another; that of respect they owe one another to keep themselves at a distance from one another.. ."(p. 244, italics and bold in original). In juxtaposing mutual love and respect Kant has expressed the dual human needs for connection and individuation. In examining love, Kant sees the human response as an outpouring of goodness, generosity and kindness. He specifies love to ".. .be thought as the maxim of benevolence (practical love), which results in beneficence." (p. 144). Respect on the other hand is seen as a drawing back from expressing one's self in the world to allow room within one's self for the other person. He sees respect ".. .to be understood as the maxim of limiting our self-esteem by the dignity of humanity in another person.."(p. 144). It would appear that the 'limiting of our self-esteem' means that our self-centered world view is limited by acknowledging that another person does not share our view totally and we are open not only to seeing the world view of another but accepting it as a valid view. This is not the same as agreeing with it. In developing his concept, Kant (1797/1991) maintains that the respectful response to another person is not contingent upon attributes in saying that "Every man has a legitimate claim to respect from his fellow men and is in turn bound to respect every other. Humanity itself is a dignity... "(p. 255). Kant espouses a person is worthy of respect just because they are human. Even in the case of a "vicious man"(p. 255), he asserts that a person is duty bound to show respect. Furthermore, people are have a right to be respected by others. There is a parity, a sense of fairness and justice. It is interesting to note that Kant limits his stand of accepting the frailty of the human condition by saying "At times one cannot, it is true, help inwardly looking down on some in comparison with others...but the outward manifestation of this is, nevertheless, an offense" 12 (p. 255). There is a division between the inner feeling and the outer behaviour. They are not congruent. By stating this, Kant removes respect from an inner state of being, to a code of behaviour. However, he leaves no doubt that the state of respect strived for is an unconditional acceptance of another person's humanity. There are two points I wish to note at this time where the Kantian concept of respect is inconsistent with the modern psychological approach to respect. First, Kant (1797/1991) asserts that respect is a duty; a detached mode of moral behaviour which, while meaning to honour the dignity of persons, also appears to create a distance from or be moving in the opposite direction to beneficent love. This appears to be incompatible with Maslow's (1970) statement that all serious writers who discuss ideal or healthy love have emphasized the importance of the respecting other's individuality and uniqueness and supporting his/her growth. The love Maslow refers to encompasses respect for others. Second, Kant accepts inconsistency between outward appearances and inner feelings in situations where the other person's behaviour, or attitude is not in accordance with one's values. This is in opposition to Rogers' (1957) condition of congruence, in which the therapist's outward manifestations to the client mirrors accurately his or her inner feelings. Roger's concept of congruence calls one to be consistent between outward behaviour and inner thoughts and feelings. How is that accomplished? It is the exploration of the lived reality of respect and the difficulty of attaining and maintaining respect in the face of value differences that is the object of this study. Contemporary philosophers have gradually evolved principles of respect which more closely resemble the meaning of respect under study. Gauthier (1962) asserts that the 13 principle of respect is the combination of considering the desires of and accepting the practical judgments of another, as long as these judgments are based on consideration for the wishes of others. However, consideration in this case could be given out of fear or self-interest rather than respect. Similarly, Downie and Telfer (1969) intricately expound many arguments on the principles of respect, one of which stipulates the need for 'active sympathy' or a practical concern for other people as a component of respect. Williams (1962) asserts that identifying with another person by trying to see the world from his or her point of view is a necessary ingredient of respect. In his view, this identification respect involves "at least" an effort to see the world through the eyes of others, "...from the perspective of their conception of their good..."(p. 118) and to be prepared to justify our actions if they affect others. He called this Identification respect. Rawls (1971) builds on Williams' identification respect, in that respect involves understanding and accepting those aspects of the other person which 'constrain' his or her behaviour. This indicates a degree of consideration but does not necessarily lead to egalitarian treatment of people. The limitation of these arguments lies in the definition of 'persons.' They continue to use the Kantian meaning which includes only those people capable of self-determining and rule-following behaviour (Dillon, 1992; Downie & Telfer, 1969). This eliminates the giving of respect to children, people who are senile, mentally handicapped, and mentally ill — a view of respect that is not compatible with Rogerian or Existential psychotherapy. Cranor (1975) tried all these ideas together to move toward building a theory of respect-for-persons. After refuting many of the above arguments through reasoned logic, he propounded an appraisal principle of respect. The criteria for this kind of respect require that 14 the person to be respected has a relatively permanent attribute that is under his or her control. The respecter must value the attribute positively, know why the attribute is a good thing and acknowledge his or her respect in appropriate ways to the person respected. This concept of respect is from the perspective of one person, those of the respecter. The worth of a person is decided by the evaluation of attributes by the respecter. Though this is also not the criteria for respect sought after by those in the helping professions it is perhaps the most commonly used criteria within society. The widespread practice of showing honour and deference to those whom we judge to be excellent at something we admire will need to be taken into account in this study. Hudson (1980) noting that, "... the nature of respect-for-persons remains troublesome and somewhat mysterious ... [and that] we have too much trouble understanding what respect-for-persons is" (p. 69), tries to find order between the various ideas by defining four kinds of respect. Directive respect is motivated by laws or rules (e.g., respecting a person's property rights), evaluative respect involves respecting a person for a valued attribute (such as, respecting someone for their honesty), institutional respect is given by virtue of position or status (such as, respecting a judge), and finally obstacle respect is respect for a challenging obstacle in the path of an agent (such as, respecting the power of nature). In 1983, Cranor continued his own effort toward a theory of respect by outlining four kinds of respect: (a) appraisal respect, (b) consideration respect, (c) observantia respect, and(d) identification respect. In comparing the four classifications it is interesting to note the primary focus of awareness. 15 Appraisal respect requires that the other person have some characteristic or accomplishment that the respector admires. The respector sets the value given to the attribute and the respector appraises the quality of that attribute in the other person. The awareness is primarily focussed on the respecter's"value and appraisal. Appraisal respect leads to remarks such as: "I respect her honesty." "Joe respects John because he is an eminent scientist." Cranor's appraisal respect is similar to Darwall's (1977) appraisal concept, and Hudson's (1980) evaluative respect. Consideration respect defines the kind of respect that takes account of the way in which the other person may be affected by one's actions. Also included, is consideration for objects such as respect for another's property. Here again the focus of awareness is on the respecter. The primary interest restricted to the possible impact of the respecter's actions. Consideration respect is similar to Darwall's (1977) notion of recognition respect and Downie and Telfer's (1969) concern for others. Observantia respect involves respect for the power of an object. The power may be in the realm of physical strength as in "I have respect for my opponents skill and strength." The notion of power may be extended to authority and position. Respect is given to a judge by virtue of their position in society. Again the focus of awareness is on the respecter, with only enough examination of the other person as suits the respecter's self interests. This respect is similar to Hudson's obstacle criteria. Identification respect is based on the idea of identifying with the object of respect. This theory was first put forward by Williams (1962). For the first time the focus of awareness is the other person. Identification respect requires the respecter to imagine what 16 the other person has experienced so as to be able to identify with it and to regard them as an individual as important. It means trying to put yourself in another's position and see their point of view. There are limitations in the philosophical arguments for identification. The motive for trying to identify might be cruelty or curiosity, or to gain insights for the purpose of hurting. These motives could not be included in a definition of respect. Cranor has created an organized starting point from which to view respect. Identification respect, which situated the focus of attention on the person to be respected, the most appropriate of the four categories from which to look at the topic of this thesis. Dillon, a feminist philosopher, adds further logical development to the idea by in casting her net beyond philosophy. Dillon, (1992) drew on the rich developmental history of criteria for respect, plus Gilligan's (1982) ideas regarding 'care morality' described in In a Different Voice, to present the concept of care respect. The cornerstone of care respect is respect for a unique individual rather than the Kantian notion of an abstract, generic person. It takes into account and values the detailed characteristics that make people different from, as well as those that make them similar to others. Dillon (1992) grounds care respect: ... in something which, considered in the abstract, nearly all human beings have and can be said to have equally — the characteristic of being an individual human 'me' — a characteristic which each of us values and thinks is both morally important and profoundly morally problematic not only in others but in ourselves as well, and which pulls our attention to the concrete particularities of each human individual, (p.l 18). The concept of care respect simultaneously views persons in the global abstraction of all sharing the same characteristics., and the fully specific concrete person, 'me' - seeing "both the person in the individual and the individual in the person" (p. 118). Though the details of 17 experience are different, there is a fundamental humanity which we all experience. We all share in the needs described by Maslow (1970) and trials and tribulations in an effort to meet those needs. There is an arena of shared experience that allows for empathy and understanding. It allows for identification respect, where an attempt is made to see from the other person's point of view. At the same time each person is unique. The details of experience are different for each person. The individual struggles and blessings of each person creates a unique personality. The notion of an "individual human 'me'" is mentioned for the first time in the philosophical argument. Care respect encompasses several dimensions. First, respect is at its core a perception. Careful attention must be paid to an object. Second, respect is a response to an object. There is a deliberate acknowledgment of the object's claim to attention. Third the object is perceived as being worthy of attention and worthy of being taken seriously. Finally respect calls one to behave in a certain fashion toward the object. Dillon lists many ways of respecting. ... by showing consideration for them or taking them into account; by keeping our distance from them and giving them room; by praising, honoring, or worshipping them; by obeying or abiding by them; by avoiding them; by protecting and being careful with them. When we violate, interfere with, or encroach upon something, or despise, scorn, or condemn it, or act high-handedly, or arrogantly, or carelessly in connection with it, we are not respecting it. (p. 109) Dillon's concept of respect accepts the individual as he or she is, including imperfections and incompleteness. Respect is more than recognizing similarities but also has to do with how one responds to differences, ".. .indeed, it might well seem that it is precisely in the face of difference that respect is called for." (p. 123) 18 Care respect accepts individuals as separate and self-synthesizing, capable of ordering their lives. At the same time people are relational and interdependent. In exhibiting care respect one is slow to judge and generous in evaluation. There is a limit. Care respect does not accept the unacceptable. Those who respond with care respect become informed about others within the other's relational world in order to promote their good. This is done with sympathetic, caring concern that is similar to love. Concern entails accepting responsibility to make a positive contribution to the other's well-being and not simply to desist from degrading their situation. They resist the temptation to project their own reality onto the other person or stereotype the other person. Care respect is person focused. This includes having care respect for ones self. Dillon's care respect is attention given to and appreciation of persons "in the richness of their concrete particularity" (p. 124). It includes the notion of trying to understand the other from their world view. However, it goes beyond Cranor's notion of identity respect. Care respect states that the motivation for seeking to understand is to promote the other's good. In cases where promoting the other's concept of good is not possible or is against one's values, care respect at the least takes into account the other person's idea of their own good. Care respect is not rooted in one's interests or desires but is rooted in the promoting the good of the other according to their concept of self good. Care respect also does not impose one's reality or values on another, nor does it stereotype but appreciates the distinctiveness of the individual. "Care respect responds to persons both in the richness of (their) distinguishing details and in the shared humanity that encompasses and is encompassed in it" (p. 119). 19 The philosophical ideas on respect have been traced from Kant through Cranor to Dillon. The Cranor's notion of appraisal respect and Dillon's care respect, form the philosophical underpinnings for the study. The reader is invited to compare the philosophical world of ideas about respect with a study of the lived reality of respect in face of challenging value differences. 20 CHAPTER HI Research Methodology This chapter intends to provide an understanding of the concepts underlying the methodology as well as the procedures followed in the execution of this research study. It situates the work in the qualitative perspective and the phenomenological technique. It discusses the technique of data collection, the case study, and the hermeneutical-phenomenological technique of analysis. Research Design Rationale The purpose of this study is to understand the lived or conscious experience of attaining or not attaining respect in the context of situations involving differing values between persons: The choice of a case study hernemutical-phenomenological methodology will examine the subjective experience of attaining or not attaining respect. In addition, a portion of the research follows the method of phenomenography as it attempts to discover a consensus base of the co-researchers' definitions of respect. How was this choice of method arrived at among the plethora of research designs as the most suitable for the research question? Will the conclusions drawn from the study of eight co-researchers be valid, reliable and generalizable? These questions will be addressed below. Quantitative versus Qualitative Approach to the Research Question; Description and Rationale Scientific investigation is an endeavour aimed at gathering and organizing data into a system of knowledge that gives meaning to the investigator and hopefully a wider audience. Systems of thought that organize data perceived through our senses and data produced by 21 our minds and emotions are numerous. Each culture has systems that organize core human experiences; creation, desire for objects, sexual impulses and death to name a few seen in all philosophies, religions, literatures and sciences. All paradigms of description are incomplete approximations of a particular aspect of creation (Guba and Lincoln, 1994). The totality of creation and its dynamics are beyond the scope of the mind to conceive. In any particular search for knowledge choices have to be made on how to proceed. The choice a case study hernemutical-phenomenological methodology for this study is only one way of looking at the lived experience of respect. This choice is informed by the social milieu in which the investigator finds herself. This investigation is situated in the context of western scientific exploration.1 Within the western scientific community there has been debate regarding the validity of qualitative versus quantitative inquiry (Colaizzi, 1978; Lincoln and Guba, 1985; Giorgi, 1986; Saljo, 1988; Patton, 1990). It is questionable to argue the overall supremacy of one approach over the other as a specific research question will be better served by one approach rather than the other (Saljo, 1988). 1 It might seem that the obvious is being stated. However, for the investigator, who also studies Yoga philosophy, it has been at times difficult to stay within the single paradigm of western science. In fact, the researcher believes that her ability to cognize and organize data has been greatly influenced by this eastern philosophy, Therefore, it seems necessary to state the context from which the researcher draws concepts as it is not possible for me to separate the influence of Yoga philosophy from other learning. In North America, Yoga is most often seen as a system of health giving physical postures. The philosophy of Patanjali, (unknown/1983) is a way of organizing human cognitions into a pattern that enhanced a person's ability to control their mind. It is a complete description of one way of conceptualizing human functioning. It is both a psychological and a philosophical expostulation. To understand the philosophy requires experience rather than intellectual learning just as the experience of 'blue' is different from learning the frequency of the colour. No amount of description will allow another to know blue in the way it can be known by direct experience. 22 Quantitative empirical methods derive their paradigm from the study of the natural sciences. This approach is based on the ontological assumption that there is a "real" objective world that that inquirer can apprehend, thereby determining how things are and how they work; determining 'facts' and 'truths' (Guba and Lincoln, 1994). They do this by experimenting with or manipulating variables that are observable and measurable (Colaizzi, 1978; Giorgi, 1986; Polkinghorne, 1989). They seek lawful and determined relationships (Colaizzi, 1978). The conclusions accept or reject causal or correlational hypothesis that essentially answer the question "why?" (Valle, King, and Hailing, 1989). Qualitative studies are more focussed on answering the question "what?" The underlying ontological assumption of this method holds that experience is an interactive process of the knower and the knowable that encompasses and composes the contents that are present to awareness. The knower and his or her world "are said to co-constitute one another" (Polkinghorne, 1989). It is through the world that a person finds meaning for him/ herself and conversely a person's "existence gives his or her world meaning" (Valle, King, and Hailing, 1989, p.7). Following the assumption that our conscious experience is a construction, then the researcher approaches these constructions subjectively and interactively to reveal the essence of the construct. Qualitative studies search for a description of what is rather than causal and correlational connections between variables. Each approach has advantages and limitations. Each is based on different assumptions of reality. Without reiterating the debate between the qualitative and quantitative approaches, major points of each are elucidated to illustrate why the qualitative approach is the appropriate choice for the present research question. Empirical approaches aim at prediction, 23 control and measurement of the subject of inquiry. This is efficacious in much physical science investigation. Qualitative investigation aims at discovery, description and meaning, thus requiring a different approach (Osborne, 1994). Guba and Lincoln (1994) outline nine areas of distinction between the two approaches. These distinctions show how the qualitative method is more appropriate to the study of'lived' experience. 1. The qualitative method examines the phenomenon within its context whereas the quantitative method seeks to observe a phenomenon outside the context in which it exists (Gergen 1985; Firestone, 1987). An examination of the experience of respect must be embedded in the cultural context of the co-researcher, his/her world view, the meaning (s)he makes of specific experiences and his/her values. 2. Quantitative exploration was developed for studying physical objects that do not (as far as we can tell) have a sense of self inquiry. Qualitative exploration has developed through the desire to gain knowledge about people's consciousness and their interactions. This includes looking at the meaning and purpose people ascribe to their lives (Gergen, 1985; Patton, 1990). In the exploration of the non-tangible experience of respect, self awareness and the ability to articulate that awareness is paramount to obtaining information of the inner dynamics of the co-researchers. 3. Empirical investigation assumes there is an objective truth to be found by investigation from the outside. In qualitative investigation the researcher seeks to reveal understanding from the inside of individuals or groups. If the researcher were to observe only outer manifestations of a person's behaviour they might see socially dictated polite behaviour while the person was feeling disrespectful underneath. The only way to gain a more 24 accurate picture is to hear from the experiencer what meaning they ascribe to their actions, thoughts and feelings. 4. The qualitative paradigm allows for the exploration of ambiguity and exceptional cases rather than focusing on the generalizations received from statistical analysis. This study seeks to explore all aspects of respect that are presented, even if only mentioned by .one co-researcher. 5. The quantitative method proceeds from theory to verifiable a priori hypotheses, allowing less room for creative, divergent thinking that results from an open-ended discovery approach. Qualitative exploration welcomes insights and divergence. Indeed, this research is not an attempt to prove or disprove any theory. It is an exploration of the conscious experience of respect in specific lived incidents of the co-researchers. 6. The empirical approach to inquiry assumes that theory and the facts used to verify or disprove that theory are discrete entities, independent of each other. (This is a similar thought pattern to the quantitative assumption that phenomena can be viewed apart from context.) However in qualitative work 'facts' only make sense within a theoretical paradigm and therefore are interdependent with the theory. Qualitative methodology accepts that any description or analysis must be viewed through the assumptions implicit in the theoretical framework. In the present study there is no theory to prove or disprove rather it is an exploration of a state of mind, a descriptive endeavour. A tentative theory emerges from the study. 7. Qualitative method further posits that if the theoretical framework is changed a different perception of the same 'facts' will accrue. This is possible as the qualitative 25 approach does not assume that there is one knowable objective reality as does the quantitative method. The analysis to be presented is seen as a small piece of information, bound in context, that makes no attempt to be a 'truth' for all people at all times statement. 8. The objective empirical approach takes the position that facts are value free. The qualitative approach recognizes that all theory and facts are seen through a value window beginning with what theory and what facts are sought for study. Indeed this point is relevant in the present study as respect is seen as a positive quality. 9. Traditional empirical investigation assumes that the observer should not influence what is being observed if certain procedures are followed.. Although the Heisenberg uncertainty principle and the Bohr complementarity principle have changed this concept in the physical sciences (Gergen, 1985; Lincoln and Guba, 1985) much empirical experimentation still makes this assumption. However, in the study of human nature it is not only not possible for the observer to remain independent of the phenomena observed, the phenomena are often explored by the interaction of the researcher and the phenomenon as experienced by another person. And, indeed, in this study the phenomenon of respect is explored in conversation where the researcher and co-researcher are both seeking to understand respect, both are pushing the boundaries of previous understanding. The very act of the research creates a new reality in terms of respect for both. Through this comparison of empirical quantitative and qualitative approaches it is clear that the research question in this thesis is best addressed through a qualitative approach. This rests on the ontological base that realities are held as mental constructions that are built 26 from social and individual experience. The inquirer and that which is inquired after are linked interactively so that the findings are created as the research progresses. Within the qualitative approach are many research methods. This study has used the case study method within the phenomenological investigative framework. Case Study Hermeneutic-Phenomenological Method The core of this study follows the phenomenological method. Edmund Husserl, drawing inspiration from the philosopher Kierkagaard built methods of phenomenology that allowed exploration of phenomena as lived and experienced (Kruger, 1984). Husserl based this investigative method on the assumption that "we can only know what we experience by attending to perceptions and meanings that awaken our conscious awareness (Patton, 1990 p. 69)." Husserl examined consciousness as intentionality — that people are always conscious of something (Kruger, 1984; Osborne, 1990). There is an interaction between people and their environments that defies discrete boundaries between the two. Nor is it possible to separate out a person's experience from their interpretation of that experience (Patton, 1990). Phenomenology then, seeks to "explicate the essence, structure or form of both human experience and human behaviour as revealed through essentially descriptive techniques including disciplined reflection." (Polkinghorne, 1989, p. 6, italics in original text) Its goal is to represent a meaning of a person's conscious experience with clarity, precision and organization. Phenomenology focuses on the question "What is the structure and essence of experience of this phenomenon for these people?" (Patton, 1990, p. 69). This question has been transposed into the research question thus: What is the structure and essence of the experience of respect when in a situation where one does not initially feel respectful? 27 Seeking to understand another's experience in an unbiased way requires the researcher to transcend his/her world view and open to the other's world view, a technique called bracketing. (Giorgi 1975; Hornstein, 1991). As this is not completely possible, a rigorous attempt by the researcher to find and report his or her preconceptions of the research topic allows the reader to take the researcher's perspective into account (Osborne, 1990; Merleau-Ponty, 1962). The result of this conundrum created difficulties in selecting the best fit of methodological approach. Although there has been an effort made to avoid a philosophical digression at this point of the thesis, it is necessary to state the philosophical assumptions underlying the present research. The dilemma occurs between the choice of phenomenology or hermeneutics. Hermeneutics differs from phenomenology more in ideology than method (Taylor, 1987). Interpretative phenomenology or hermeneutics contends that all experience is contextual and that the act of making meaning from experience is an intrapersonal interpretation. Silverman (1994) illuminating the two positions states that: .. .while phenomenological description is an account of the meaning of something, phenomenological interpretation is the act of producing or establishing meaning (p. 11).. .In phenomenological description the meaning precedes, and is necessary condition for, the description that is offered. In hermeneutics.. .the meaning results from an interpretive act (p. 13). Bleicher (1980) talks of the hermeneutical circle as one which "provides the link between finality and universality, and between theory and praxis" (p.75). So the questions seem to be "Does one have meaning and is this then articulated?" or "Is the act of articulation a meaning-making process?" and "Does one need to interpret an object (be it a thought, emotion or external thing) for there to be meaning?" The researcher 28 finds that at times meaning appears to come in intuitive flashes, instantaneously without process and is then articulated. At other times the process of reflection on an object or articulating about it creates meaning. Before there can be an answer to these questions, the definitions of meaning and interpretation would have to be examined. This is beyond the scope of this thesis. The essential note for this research is that this study follows the phenomenological method with the ontological assumptions of both hermeneutics in the tradition of Heidegger, Gadamer and Taylor (Bleicher, 1980) and the phenomenological assumption that meaning precedes or occurs at the moment of description. The researcher is seen as one who makes meaning by interpreting the stories told by the co-researchers. The co-researchers on the other hand must have made meaning of their experiences to tell stories appropriate to the researcher's questions and at the same time the telling of their stories is a meaning-making process that partially changes the meaning the co-researcher had at the beginning of the interview. The hermeneutic assumptions allow the researcher to state that, though all efforts were made to understand the co-researcher's stories from their point of view, it is recognized the interpretations made by the researcher are filtered through her world view. Regardless of the effort made to set aside presuppositions and assumptions the researcher sees and interprets through his or her unconscious cultural screen. Difficulties also arise in capturing an authentic experience from the co-researcher's viewpoint. Polkinghorne (1989) mentions some factors that need to be kept in mind: 1. The telling of the experience is removed in time from the actual experience. 29 2. The active non-reflective experience is replaced by the teller's relocation to a point of observation separated from the experience. 3. A change in awareness of the details and meaning of the experience occurs on reflection by the co-researcher. 4. Translating the experience into language necessitates choosing details from multiple layers of consciousness. Language is at best a kind of road map used to guide the listener to a close approximation of the speaker's reality. 5. We can only have direct awareness of our own experience. Then as researchers what are we looking at? We do not have something to pick up or count. We admit that we see the object of study through the lenses of our cultural experience. We recognize that others cannot replicate their experience but only retell it in an approximation. This points to the shift required for phenomenological research. In examining an experience as 'lived' the researcher is interested in what the co-researcher chooses to tell, what he or she found remarkable, and meaningful. We are interested in how the meaning was arrived at. In phenomenology the researcher is interested in subjective truth rather than objective truth. Phenomenography Phenomenography was developed by a group of researchers in the Department of Education at the University of Gothenburg to examine the meanings given by participants to various educational topics such as reading, physics concepts and learning. This approach seeks to discover and organize the way people construe various aspects of their world. To see how phenomenography is distinct from phenomenography a short comparison will be made. 30 Phenomenology is a first-order examination of experience, in that it looks at the essence experience as lived, while phenomenography is a second-order examination that looks at the content of thinking and attempts to describe the world through the mind of the participant (Larsson, 1987; Marton, 1988; Saljo, 1988). It is concerned with "how the world is construed by the actors" (Saljo, 1988, p. 36). In this approach to understanding people's conceptions of phenomena, the phenomenographer takes "an epistemological position where "the existence of a 'real' reality common to all and available through 'unbiased' observation of the world" (Ibid, p. 61) does not exist. Therefore, phenomenography is interested in the filter through which people view the world. Phenomenology and hermeneutics are concerned with the process of making meaning from perceptions, whereas, phenomenography is concerned with the variations in meanings themselves. Phenomenography investigates the structurally significant differences in which people experience or think about a phenomenon (Marton, 1986). Rather than looking for the essence of what people hold in common about an experience, phenomenographers characterize the variations of experience. A phenomenological study of respect would look at only the intrasubjective experiences of respect. Phenomenographers look at both the intrasubjective and inter subjective aspects of respect. This does not mean phenomenographers focus on the idiosyncratic. The study of how phenomena are conceptualized consistently finds a limited number of qualitatively different ways a phenomenon is construed. "In between the common and the idiosyncratic there seems, thus, to exist a level: a level of modes of experience, forms of thought, worthwhile studying (Marton, 1981, p. 181). 31 Concepts are not "inherent qualities in the mind of the thinker or in the objects/phenomena themselves" (Saljo, 1988, p. 7) but encompass both the individual and the phenomena. A thought is always a thought about something. It is a relationship between the 'understander' and the 'understood.' Marton (1984) points out that relations are between what is being perceived and who is doing the perceiving. The researcher's task is to find "the distinctively different ways in which individuals relate themselves to the various aspects of their world" (p. 45). Hence the third difference between the two approaches centers of the relational as well as the experiential. If one accepts a relational account of human functioning, then there is a correlation between concept and context. So varying concepts may be not only be held by different people but also one person may have different concepts of the same phenomena when it is situated in different contexts (Gibbs, 1982). As seen earlier, phenomenographic researchers have shown that when all conceptions are categorized there are a limited number of categories found. "The set of categories is thus stable and generalizable between situations, even if the individuals 'move' from one category to another on different occasions" (Marton, 1984). In this relational approach the need for "bracketing" the researchers ideas and assumptions on the topic, for setting them aside, to focus on the participant's experience is no longer relevant. There is no need to interpret the experience through the researchers mind. Phenomenography describes the participant's relations to the phenomena without distinction between experience and concepts of experience. 32 How are conceptions and categories related? A conception is a way of construing something; it is a relationship between an individual and a phenomenon. There is a distinction made between the act of experiencing a phenomenon and thinking or forming a concept about the phenomenon. Each descriptive category of a concept is one way to perceive and give language to an understanding of a phenomenon and has a characteristic difference from other conceptual categories of the same phenomenon. People may hold various meanings of a concept depending on the perspective of the viewer within the context of the moment. Phenomenography springs from the perspective of phenomenology, sharing an experiential approach of understanding human endeavours. However, it takes a second-order view in examining the content of conceptions rather than seeking to describe the essence of a lived experience. In doing so it focuses on the variations between people's conceptions of reality as opposed to the similarities. Phemonemography examines both the act of forming a concept and the meaning of the phenomena as conceived. (Lybeck, Marton, Stromdahl & Tullberg, 1987). Like phenomenological-hermeneutics, phenomenography uses qualitative research techniques. Before discussing the specific techniques used in this study, the reader will perhaps be asking "Is phenomenology then a science without rigor?" No. The following section on reliability and validity will address the way in which the research is judged. Reliability, Validity and Generalizability How believable is this research? How can the credibility or trustworthiness be assessed? In quantitative approaches, arguments about fact or truth have been assessed by measures of reliability and validity. Reliability is quantitative research refers to the ability of other researchers using the same equipment and the same method to achieve the same results. 33 Validity refers to the degree to which an instrument measures what it is designed to measure. These are logical and valid ways to judge the worthiness of quantitative work. Qualitative research uses different models and strategies to measure worthiness (Agar, 1986; Polkinghorne 1990; Krefting, 1991). The objective of phenomenological research is not the measurement by an instrument but to describe, discover and seek the meaning of human experience from the co-researcher's perspective. Case study research is the ideal vehicle for the discovery voyage in which 'why' and 'how' questions are being asked about a contemporary phenomenon within a real-life context (Yin, 1994). This fits the with the basic 'how' question in this research: "How do you attain or maintain respect in situations of conflicting values?" In case study design, the interviewer tries to empower the interviewer to tell their story in their words. The interviewer guides the interview but does not control the events being related. The use of multiple cases allows a bridge to be built between the uniqueness of individuals and their commonly shared realities. Examining several cases gives the researcher the ability to have individual cases ".. brought into 'conversation' with one another." (Rosenwald, 1988 p. 239). From this comes the reconstruction of shared realities from individuals' perspectives. How are these reconstructions evaluated for reliability and validity? The essence of reliability is replicability. In the present research another investigator will not be able to interview a co-researcher under similar conditions. If the data gathering cannot be replicated then how is reliability established? Reliability is established by the ability of a later investigator to arrive at the conclusions and findings from the data of the same case, not replicating the results on another case (Johansson, Marton & Svensson, 1985; Yin 1994). 34 One method of assessing reliability of qualitative research is assessed by leaving a 'trail' that can be followed by another investigator (Krefting, 1991). The first evidence left in this research includes the transcripts found in the appendix. The second evidence left are sufficiently detailed descriptions of themes so that another investigator can read the interview transcripts and find the same themes (Lincoln & Guba, 1985; Polkinghorne, 1989; Yin 1994). This is not to say that the transcripts could not be read from another perspective and evoke different themes. It does say that the themes found could be found again by an independent reader using the same definition of themes and the same conceptual/cultural framework. Construct validity is the degree to which the study examined what it purports to examine. I will defend against sources of error. First, did the co-researchers respond with what they thought the researcher wanted to hear or with the accuracy of their stories? Choosing co-researchers who meet the criteria of the study, particularly the ability to be aware of inner feelings and express these without shame or inhibition helps guard against this threat. Second, as the researcher participates in the research in a dynamic interview and is not merely an observer she must continually reflect on her characteristics and examine how they influence the data. A field journal was kept in which reflections of her thoughts vis a vis the research context were documented. Third, are there multiple sources of evidence? Yes, eight co-researchers, from a variety of helping professions, ages and equally divided between male and female were interviewed. They are all North American Caucasians. One co-researcher, though born in the Unites States, spoke only Arabic until the age of six. Her parents were from Lebanon. Fourth, could another investigator follow a "chain of evidence (Yin, 1994, p. 35 34)"? The analysis gives a full description of themes and an account of their development. And finally, do the co-researchers recognize themselves in the interpretations arrived at by the researcher? All the transcripts and interpretative analyses were sent to the co-researchers for verification. Any comments were incorporated into the final conclusions. In phenomenological research "internal validity refers to the degree to which the explanations [not description] of phenomena match realities of the world" (Shumacher & McMillan, 1993, p. 391). What is sought is a coherent persuasive argument. The researcher must persuade the readers that the inferences and conclusions arrived are supported. The reader must be able to follow the thought process or the chain of evidence and in doing so be convinced of the credibility of the researchers conclusions (Polkinghorne, 1989). Internal validity or coherence is also increased by pattern matching between cases (Yin, 1994). Replication logic is achieved when each case is analyzed as a single experiment for meaning units and themes followed by an analysis of themes across cases. It can be seen from the foregoing arguments that favour multiple case study research that the validity and reliability are considerably enhanced studying multiple cases. Multiple case study also strengthens the external validity. External validity refers to the degree to which the inferences and conclusions can be applied to the population beyond the co-researchers. As phenomenological case study research aims at a general analytical description of a phenomenon. It is looking for patterns, common meanings and themes, not statistical generalization (Rosenwald, 1988; Yin, 1994). If several cases find the same phenomena, the argument is strengthened for the reality of the existence of the phenomena. 36 In summary, validity and reliability are enhanced by close attention and explication of research design, data collection and data analysis. Procedures: The Method Followed in the Present Study Co-researchers Subjects are selected for phenomenological research for the purpose of generating a full range of variation and description of the phenomena under study (Polkinghorne, 1989) Subjects are not seen as experimental objects but as co-researchers searching for meaning along side the researcher and therefore subjects are referred to as co-researchers. Co-researchers are people seen as expressing the trait to be studied in some way better than average. The criteria for including a co-researcher are his or her ability to: a) be articulate about experiences, b) be aware of inner feelings and express these without shame or inhibition, c) have experienced the situation under investigation recently, d) be interested in the topic of investigation and to e) be practicing in a helping profession. Some co-researchers were found networking and others were people I knew. The number and choice of subjects were not determined before the beginning of the study, due to the open ended approach to research using this method. The co-researchers in this study are all members of the university educated mainstream of North American culture. Eight co-researchers were interviewed. For purposes of anonymity only a brief biographical sketch will be given. Al l co-researchers are Canadian born Caucasians unless otherwise noted. The names have been changed to protect the anominity of the co-researchers. 37 Participant #1: Helen is a 40 year old woman had completed her M A in Counselling Psychology. At the time of the interview she was in private practice and working for a social agency. I had known Helen for two years before this interview. Participant # 2 : Jack is a 48 year old man who holds a M A degree in Art Therapy. He counselled prisoners in a maximum security prison in Canada for 8 years.. Some of this time was spent counselling offenders of the most severe crimes such as murder and gross sexual offenses. At the time of the interview Jack was in private practice. I was acquainted with Jack through a mutual friend for one year before the interview. Participant #3: Mary is a 60 year old Roman Catholic nun with a M.A. in Counselling Psychology and an M.A. in Spiritual Direction. She has been a counsellor and spiritual director for over 20 years. Fifteen years ago Mary was my spiritual advisor for three years. We had a relationship lasting over several years that centered on spiritual growth. Participant #4: Ken is a physicianwho has been in charge of a palliative care unit in a major hospital for 6 years. Ken was recommended to me as a possible co-researcher by a member of my examining committee. Participant #5: Irene is a 49 year old woman with a M A in Counselling Psychology. She has been an elementary school counsellor for 7 years. Irene was recommended to me by a friend who is also a therapist. Participant #6: Leonard is a 46 year old man with a M A degree in Counselling Psychology. At the time of the interview he was working as a counsellor in a local organization and in private practice. I have know Leonard for two years as a counselling colleague. 38 Participant #7: Norman is a 45 year old man with a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. He has been counselling adolescents, young adults and families for 20 years in California. I had met Norman previously but had not become acquainted. He studies with the same spiritual teacher as I do. Participant #8: Pamela is a woman over 60 years of age who has been a teacher and facilitator of effective communication and relationship skills for over 20 years. She lives and works in the USA. Pamela was recommended to me by a friend as someone who was interested in the topic of respect. Data Collection: The Interview In this study, the meaning of respect was investigated through an analysis of the lived experience and by direct questions regarding the co-researcher's definitions of respect. They were asked how they went about becoming respectful, what were the essential ingredients of respect. The phenomenological interview is en interactive engagement in which the co-researchers are asked to describe their experience in detail. The setting was the home or office of the co-researcher in 6 cases and my home for 2 cases. In all cases the setting was chosen by the co-researcher. This facilitated creating a relaxed atmosphere — the first step in the interview process. After normal period of social chit chat the co-researchers were asked to remember a recent experience in which their immediate reaction was not respectful. An example is: H: I'm doing a study on the experience of respect in situations where a person wants to be respectful but initially, they're not able to be as respectful as they want to be. So I want you to tell me of some recent experiences that you have had where you've had to consciously make an effort to be respectful. Could you tell me a story from your work situation. 39 The preamble informed the co-researchers of the purpose of the study and asked for their stories. The different wording was spontaneously chosen regarding the purpose of the preamble and the personal response to the co-researcher depending on the feel of the chit chat. Further open ended questions and comments by the interviewer asked for clarification, and elaboration. The focus of the interview was to recount in detail the inner thought, feelings and self talk as the co-researcher relived the experience of grappling with their reactions. The interviewer sought to obtain nuanced descriptions that described and gave meaning to this central theme. In keeping phenomenological research method (Colaizzi, 1978), the interviews changed to adapt to information already received as the research progressed. For example, earlier co-researchers were not asked for stories outside their work experience whereas later co-researchers were. The researcher asked for the co-researchers' stories in the first part of the interview. After recounting their experiences the co-researchers were asked specific questions regarding their definition of respect, of boundaries in relation to respect, and how their philosophical and/or spiritual background influenced their experiences of respect. The interviews were from one to two hours long. Al l interviews were recorded by audio-tape and transcribed. Data Analysis Data analysis followed the protocol of Colaizzi (1978). 1. Read through all transcripts to get a feeling for them. 2. Read through each transcript and extract significant statements. 40 3. Formulate a meaning from the significant statements. This step requires the researcher to leap beyond the co-researchers words. 4. Organize the meanings into themes. Compare these themes to the original transcripts for validation. Ensure all data has been included, especially data that does not appear to fit. 5. Integrate the results into an exhaustive description. 6. Show the co-researcher the descriptions and ask then to compare the description with their experience. Any new information from the co-researcher must be worked into the final results of the research. The first interview was transcribed and examined by the researcher and two members of the examining committee. Feedback was given by the committee on interviewing technique and the conceptual direction of the questions. These suggestions were incorporated into the second interview. The transcript of the second interview was also reviewed by the committee members. At this point more suggestions were made to improve the quality of the questions and encourage more in-depth answers. Discussion aiding the focus of the interview helped the researcher learn to identify key statements by the co-researchers and ask for more information. This process was repeated a third time. At this time it was decided to add direct questions such as "How do you define respect?" after the story telling part of the interview. During the analysis the researcher consulted with committee members regarding the quality and comprehensiveness of the themes. There was agreement between the researcher's analysis and that of the committee members thus enhancing construct validity. This chapter has outlined the reasons pertinent to the research question for the choice of quantitative methodology. It has delineated the philosophical underpinnings of the 41 hermeneutical-phenomenological approach to quantitative research design and explanations for the suitability of this approach for the present study have been given. By carefully following the methods of multiple case study design and Colaizzi's data analysis reliability, validity and generalizability can be established. As a result credible research of the phenomenon can be produced. 42 CHAPTER IV Analysis of the Data This chapter presents the analysis of the research interviews. The interpretative analysis of experience involves the extraction of themes from the stories. The themes were chosen from what the researcher saw as noteworthy through the lens of her individual culture, education and experiences. Her ability to see themes is, therefore, limited by her world view. As the study of lived experience is a holistic endeavour difficulties arise in describing a multidimensional phenomenon in words. The separation into different themes is a necessity of language rather than an accurate portrayal of people's experience. Within the eight interviews there are eighteen stories or vignettes. Each of these tells of an experience where being respectful was a challenge to the co-researcher. What stories, from a lifetime of experiences, should be chosen to be told? We began with anecdotes within the context of the work milieu. Fourteen vignettes portray occurrences between a professional and a the person they serve, be that student, patient or client. As the research progressed the researcher asked for stories from other contexts as well. In the last four interviews, two stories took place between colleagues and two were personal. Analysis began by reading and rereading the transcripts to 'get a feel' for the ideas and feelings presented by the co-researchers. Then the transcripts were reread while highlighting significant passages. The third step involved formulating meaning from the significant statements. In this stage the researcher left the words of the transcript, putting the ideas into her own words within the framework of psychological language. The fourth stage saw 43 categories or themes applied to the emergent ideas. These four stages were repeated at intervals adding and modifying the analysis as the work matured. Each interview was examined to determine the themes on an intrapersonal level. The themes from all the transcripts were then compared for similarities and differences. Two categories of themes that came forth were, (1) the intrinsic themes and (2) the process themes. The intrinsic themes are motifs that were seen in most or all the stages in the process. They are simultaneously foundational and transcendent. They radiate through the process themes giving definition and richness to the flow of the stories. The intrinsic themes are like the windowpanes in the car used for a journey; sometimes clear, sometimes tinted, sometimes opaque, but always there. The condition of the windows, of course, has an effect on the ability to see the way forward clearly. The intrinsic themes are: 1. Foundations of Respect a) Identity b) Self Respect c) Boundaries 2. Context of Experience 3. Meaning of Respect a) Semantic challenge b) Co-researcher's Conceptions of respect (This section is at the end of the process themes.) 44 The process themes map the progress on a journey of experience that begins with loss of respect, moves forward, then circles back and revisits previous thoughts and feelings, revising, adding new material before striking further along the path. Most journeys ended in increased respect. The process themes outline the phases of the co-researchers' experiences as they were lived. The flow to the stories followed a specific pattern that is roughly chronological. The most commonly related process followed a spiral rather than a linear pattern, sometimes with several themes happening at the same time and sometimes circling through previously stated stages at a deeper level. Nonetheless, the journey progressed from a beginning to an end. The process themes are: 1. The Trigger 2 . The Reaction a) The Emotional Reaction b) Agenda e) Judgment d) The Behavioural Reaction 3. Stop 4. The Shift Response a) See Self b) See Other 5. Accept Self and Other 6. Outcome 45 To illustrate the existence of the process and intrinsic themes, an excerpt from Pamela's transcript portrays most of the themes in a succinct story. I've had an occasional student.. .who kept contradicting the concepts of the skills that I was teaching. And contradicted my whole concept of an attitude toward people (identity) and especially young people, especially children, (trigger) ...And I wanted to kill (reaction) because I felt that.. .he was tainting my work and probably leading my class astray (agenda, judgment) until I realized that, Oh! wait a minute (stop) — he's in pain. He's had a difficult experience, (see other) ...And so all of a sudden my anxiety and my resistance to him became very empathetic. And I was able then to validate his point of view even if I didn't agree with him. (response) ... it was important for me to respect him enough even though I didn't agree with him - that he had a right to his belief system (boundary). And it was important to realize that we all behave the way we do for a reason, (accept self, accept other) That he was not singling me out... (see self) (Pamela, 47)2 The themes in the process are identified here, as well as the intrinsic themes of identity, and boundary. This experience occurred within the context of student/teacher. The themes in the flow can be found stated explicitly in most of the vignettes as they are above. Occasionally a theme can only be identified by implication. For example, Mary did not note a specific time when she 'stopped' and turned to examine herself but this is implied in the story line: I have to deal with my sense of responsibility.. I have to say Mary, your responsibility here is at the level of being present to this person and leaving that person to make their own decisions, move on their own emotional states on what they're able to cope with and handle. (Mary, 206) Here, the stop theme is implied by her self talk. Mary Would not be telling herself what to do if she had not first noticed she wanted modify her reaction. Also implied in this quotation is the idea of defining the bounds between self and other. This brings the reader to the core 2 Excerpts from the interviews that appear in the text of this chapter, have been edited. Parts left out are marked by an ellipsis. Pauses marked by a series of periods in the transcript are marked by an en dash in the text. Also omitted are speech markers such as 'ah,' 'um,' "you know,' 'right,' and repeated words. The numbers at the end of the quotes indicate the line in the transcript so the reader can easily find the longer passage if the context of the quote is wanted. The complete interviews are found in the appendix. 46 themes of identity, self respect and boundaries. These themes are fundamental to the clarity of the windows. The rest of the chapter will present the analysis. The Intrinsic Themes Identity, Self Respect, and Boundaries The three themes of identity, self respect and boundaries emerged as important and integral aspects of the experience of respect. Conceptually these themes may be separated but the occurrence in experience is entwined. The concept of identity is the foundation from which self respect and boundaries emerge. Without knowledge of the self, that is an identity, how can there be self respect? Without a knowledge of the self, how can one create a boundary saying this is me and that is not me? The interconnectedness of these concepts in lived experience is seen in the following passage from Ken's interview. .. I realized that I not only need to ask 'Who is this person I'm caring for?' but I also have to ask 'Who am I?'... We need to establish our own boundaries with regard to respect and that's part of what I'm saying — we need to have respect for oneself. There's always a limit. My resources are limited as well... We need some kind of framework... H: Then establishing your own framework and knowing how far you can go, then in a sense it frees you to be more respectful to people who have a different framework. Ken: That's right. (Ken, 82) Ken states that knowing who he is allows him to set boundaries. Furthermore, these boundaries are necessary for self respect and respect for others. 47 Identity Identity, is a psychological construct in the making. Landrine (1992) sees identity as a set of self attitudes that contain a description and an evaluation of a person's behaviour and attributes. It can be looked at as a self-reflexive mechanism ~ an awareness of self that can be thought about, reflected upon, analyzed and discussed. Identity in this sense is not so much who you are, but who you know you are. It is a knowledge of your beliefs, values, attitudes and attributes. It is not what someone else can see, what someone else might know about you but what you know about yourself. The experience of separating who you are (the witness) from what you are aware of (the experience) is a spiritual quality. This quality is spoken of as mindfulness in the Buddhist tradition and egolessness in the Yoga tradition. Christianity talks about constant watchfulness. It transcends the concepts of identity to what is called in the Yoga tradition 'pure consciousness.'3 The researcher finds confusion in western thought surrounding the use of the term ego. Jung touches on the spiritual however the researcher finds clearer definition of the spirit from the worldly in the spiritual traditions. Though self-reflection is part of identity, identity is not concerned solely within the individual. A person is not an entity that exists independently; a person exists as part of social interactions and relationships (Landrine, 1992). So identity also includes the individual as a part of and interacting with a larger whole. This concept of identity echoes Dillon's definition 3 The reader may have strong misgivings about the language used here to identify this part of human existence. If so the researcher invites the reader to look beyond the language to the precepts and begin a dialogue on how this aspect of human live can be languaged. To the best knowledge of the researcher western psychology has not word or phrase for this phenomena. 48 o f person' as a unique individual 'me' as well as part collective humanity of interaction and shared experience. In this thesis the co-researchers portray a constant cycling between self reflection and the social interaction. Knowing the self helps define how we will interact with others; and interaction with others helps define the self. Mary relates in her story a time where she is clear about who she is, what her role is and what she is feeling. Through this sense of who she is and where she ends she makes a choice about her behaviour and attitude toward her client: I have to deal with my sense of responsibility.. I have to say Mary, your responsibility here is at the level of being present to this person and leaving that person to make their own decisions, move on their own emotional states on what they're able to cope with and handle and so my responsibility is not to present my agenda but to help that person to continue to explore their own. (Mary, 227) Mary is concerned about the consequences actions might have for her client. In self-reflection Mary clarified what was her responsibility, and what was the client's responsibility, what was her agenda, and what was the client's agenda, thus creating a clearly defined boundary. Her identity is separated from the client's identity on the basis of responsibility. She is saying, "I am a person who takes responsibility for myself and does not want to be responsible for or take control of other's actions." This defined the way in which she interacted in the therapeutic relationship. She would not interfere with the client making her decisions even though she did not agree with them. The consequence that other's actions have on the individual also has an effect in the molding of an identity. Can one hold to one's opinions against opposition and fear of rejection? In another story Mary explored the separation of her identity from her need to be accepted by others. 49 .. .to be true to myself I had to say things.. if I believe in something or see something that's true or something needs to be said.. without taking it too personally if it's not heard or rejected or whatever. I feel good that I've said what I need to say because I would not like myself if I didn't. (Mary, 751) ... she had to make her decisions in keeping with her own feelings and in keeping with her own reality and... my identity wasn't tied up in my ideas being accepted or not accepted.. .my identity is beyond that... (772) Part of Mary's identity is being true to herself in her dealings with the world. Without that she would not be able to accept herself, would not like herself. The knowing and accepting of herself leads to self respect. A quotation from Pamela also illustrates how knowing one's self precedes self acceptance and self respect. This internal process then sets the stage for her interactions with others. Because I.. .have to respect myself. I first have to realize that I cannot react. And if I am reacting I'm coming from an ego state which says that the only way I can be okay is to have you agree with me, to be better than you - like be one up. And the self esteem says I'm already wonderful. I have no apologies to anyone especially not to myself. That who I am is absolutely warts and all. This is who I am and I start from here. And the lovely thing is in that state it enables me to see that in the other person. (Pamela, 109) For Pamela having conscious knowledge of what makes up the self "warts and all" and accepting who she is without reservation is the basis of her identity. Part of her identity is knowing she is acceptable even if another person disagrees with an important value that she holds.. This is the stage from which she is able to look at others without fear of losing her identity. Self Respect The role of self respect in setting boundaries and the integral need of self respect as a precursor to respecting others is a predominant theme in all the interviews. For Pamela in the 50 previous quotation, knowing herself and accepting herself is self respect. In addition, self respect is the foundation that enables her to see the other person and not react. Self respect is an internal mechanism that allow one to control one's responses to others. Self respect plays a role not only in how one acts toward others, but how one allows others to act toward us. Part of maintaining self respect is deciding where and how one will assert one's self. Leonard makes this decision in a situation where he was being verbally attacked. ".. .if I don't address that issue then what does that say about me in terms of respecting myself. So I think you have to have self respect if you are going to respect others. .. .when we are not assertive we lose respect for ourselves..." (Leonard, 573). Leonard adds that self respect is a necessary precursor to being respected by the other person. "Otherwise if I just respect you and I don't respect myself there is something wrong with that equation. I mean there's no chance for reciprocity is there? How could you respect me if I didn't respect myself?" (Leonard, 574) The quality of self respect affects how we define our role with others. It defines our ability to see and respond to others. It defines our ability to see and respond to how others behave toward us. Lastly, it affects the ability of others to respect us. Our self respect, developed from our sense of identity, defines our boundaries. Boundaries My apple trees will never get across And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him. He only says, "Good fences make good neighbours." . (Frost, 1972, p. 16) As this thesis is not primarily about boundaries, instead of using an academic definition of boundaries from the literature, a condensed version of the researcher's definition 51 will be given. Boundaries are seen as a point of tension between the need for individuation and the need for connection in any given situation. A broader discussion of boundaries would discuss the need for individuation in order for there to be connection and visa versa. This complex topic that is beyond the scope of the thesis. For the present purpose, a boundary is the outer manifestation of this tension — where and how the self meets the social world. Figure 1, diagrams two individuals, self and other, and the point of interaction between the two, the relationship. The relationship is a shared reality that creates a third entity, 'us.' The part of a person in the 'us' is the part one is willing to share and the other person is willing to receive. There are limits to what will be shared and limits to what will be shared and these limits are the boundaries. Relationship - Connection Figure 1. The Interaction of Identity, Self Respect and Boundaries. The connotation of the word boundary indicates a line between two adjacent areas. This implies a rigidity that is misleading. To add flexibility, a boundary can be seen as a membrane with fluctuating permeability, more open in certain situations and more closed in 52 others. Permeability differs in different relationship roles such as: peer relationships, intimate relationships, authority relationships and others. For example, in an intimate relationship the boundaries are expansive, most permeable. In an authoritarian context boundaries are much more constricted, less permeable. Permeability also changes within one relationship depending on immediate factors, for example, whether the on-going experience is mellow, angry, or task oriented. The context of the relationship with others helps define where a boundary is drawn. Context in relation to the experience of respect will be explored later. The earlier quotations in this section from Mary, Pamela and Ken have sharply illustrated how boundary maintains a sense of self within relationship. It allows individuation within connection. It says, "These are my thoughts and values. I stand by them. You can be different and I can still be connected with you." Honouring boundaries of self and other is seen as respectful by the co-researchers. Leonard comments that ".. .here's my boundary and if those boundaries are really clear, then you can respect the boundaries... So I think boundaries play a huge role in respect." (Leonard, 586). Conversely, crossing boundaries is a mark of disrespect. Norman states, "Where as if a boundary of one person or the other is crossed or violated then that seems to be a disrespect." (Norman, 345). Irene and Jack echo this idea saying: Irene: I don't think people should be counselled against their will. And so I would never have been in her face with a bunch of stuff about her problems without her being a willing participant in that. So I guess that was respecting the boundary that she had drawn. (Irene, 340) 53 Jack: I would wanna respect.. .the integrity of that symbol without intruding in the • process and without needing.. .to know before this session is over...what this symbol means. Well, that's my problem. That's not their problem. So I would want to respect their process. (Jack, 149) To conclude this section, two quotations from Ken's transcript tie all the ideas together. So it was difficult in terms of respecting his choice and respecting who he was. The only way we could work at that respect was to continue going back to him and try to be patient. And at the same time to say that 'There are some boundaries here and if this behaviour continues we will ask you to leave.' (Ken, 47) ... ... people have the right to be in control of their lives and to make choices about — to make their own choices about care that they receive or don't receive and the way they receive it. And that that is their opportunity, responsibility, capability — I'd have to use all of those words and that it's my opportunity slash responsibility to inform them of what is available for them through our program.. .and the choice is theirs. (Ken, 261) In this series of quotations Ken connects his identity, expressed as knowledge of his limitations, and his philosophy of patient centered care, to the need for boundaries. He made a choice regarding the possible range of his actions based on knowing what actions would remain true to his concept of himself and what actions would transgress his values. He needed to respect the values and ideas of what he was trying to achieve. Knowing his self attitudes and remaining true to them set the boundary of social interaction. This is an explicit example of how identity, self respect and boundaries interact in the experience of respecting others. The discussion so far has shown the interaction of identity, self respect and boundaries. It has also been shown that boundaries fluctuate depending on the context of the situation. We now examine how context affects the experience of respect. 54 The Context The Dynamic of Context Any situation between people takes place within a context. The context takes shape from the mutually agreed upon goals. The goal of gaining knowledge defines the school context; the goals of improved health define the hospital context and the goal of personal growth defines the therapeutic context. Within each context, roles are defined for the participants involved by rules that prescribe expected behaviour. There is an assumption that all participants know the rules and have agreed to them. As a situation is enacted, the rules are placed out of awareness, so that complete concentration can be given to reaching the goal. Because the rules are out of awareness, there is more than an expectation that they will be followed there is a trust that they will be followed. If this trust is broken; if somebody breaks the rules, the mind is pulled away from the task at hand and turned to the topic of the rules. It was at this moment, when someone did not act as expected, that opens the way to possible disrespect. Context is relevant to the study of respect because expectations arise from context. The key trigger for possible loss of respect happens when expectations are not met. The part expectations play in the process is found in the reaction theme in the process section. At the moment we will continue with the theme of context. Three contexts, the professional,4 the collegial and the personal were the basis of all eighteen stories. The critical difference between these three contexts relevant for this study lies in the nature of power balance within relationship. Collegial and personal relationships are 4 'Professional context' refers to the student/teacher, client/therapist, patient/doctor relationship. The context of the interaction between colleagues in a professional workplace is referred to as the collegial context. 55 relationships between peers. There is one set of rules for social conduct that is the same for all participants. There is at least a semblance of equality of power. By contrast, in the professional context there is a power differential, real or perceived, that creates different rules of expected behaviour for each participant; one set for the professional and another for the person served. How do the different contexts of the stories impinge upon this study? The answer lies in the expectation of reciprocity in peer relationships. This expectation is not present in professional/client relationships. In the context of professional interaction, all 5 the co-researchers shared the same rule for their behaviour themselves: that they be respectful of their clients/students/patients, with or without reciprocity. There was not such unanimity in the collegial context. In a collegial situation a rule stipulates that one maintain professional behaviour between colleagues. Part of this rule is the expectation of mutual respect. If that expectation was not met, respect was diminished. Speaking about a chairperson who was minimizing her, Mary relates: .. .my own expectations set me up to be.. .hurt because I was assuming or expecting that there'd be a little bit more respect for me and.. who I am or at least give me the benefit of the doubt to find out who I am before operating on whatever image. (Mary, 571) .. .when somebody minimizes who I am, I don't have as much respect for that person. I don't have as much trust (789). In this situation, Mary voices hurt at the betrayal of trust that she be respected. The unspoken rule among colleagues was broken. This expectation of reciprocity of respect is not 5 M . couched this in terms of having respect for the client's process of exploration and development. He did not talk about respecting his clients as individuals or on the global basis as human beings. 56 present for Mary in a counselling context. In comparing this experience with a counselling experience Mary says: in the counselling situation — on my part there's a great reverence for the other person, that they would be that trusting of me... Or at least have some degree of trust to even be in the same room with a stranger... in the situation I just described that wasn't there (Mary, 584). I mean there isn't the reverence of this person allowing themselves to be vulnerable or even trusting to whatever extent they are able to... (in the peer situation) There's no personal experience on an emotional level of ahm ... yah, — you connect, there's a connection. (592) Mary feels it is incumbent upon her to be respectful in the counselling situation regardless of the stance of the client. (Though this is not stated directly in this quotation it is implied. A reading of the transcript would leave no doubt about this fact.) In the collegial context, however, she expects to be respected in the way she respects others. Most of the stories took place in a professional context so the issue of reciprocity is not dominant in this thesis. However, the way in which reciprocity was mentioned in the interviews points to the significance of this issue. The researcher wants to note that the limited emphasis on topic belies the importance of this dynamic in the experience of respect. We turn now to a second instance, one in which one role is played out in two therapeutic contexts. The role of the co-researcher was therapist. The therapeutic contexts were individual versus group counselling situations. Helen found her responsibility as group facilitator decreed she keep the group on track. This made her more susceptible to react disrespectfully to a member who was impeding that agenda by putting forward a stance that crossed her values. In doing so he was "taking up a lot of space" in the group. There were two expectations not met here. One had to do with her personal values and the other an expectation for group process; namely that all participants have similar time 57 allotted for to express themselves. Her reaction to the personal value difference would have been the same in both contexts, but her reaction to his 'grandstanding' would be different. In individual counselling ".. .he can take up as much space as he needs to and it does not interfere... (with) the group process..." (Helen, 269).The added rule of equal time for group participants in the group situation left her more vulnerable to disrespect client than in a one to one situation. These examples touch on the complexity of context in the effort to maintain respect when expectations are not met. For the purpose of this thesis, the core issue remains that expectations arise from context, and one response to unmet expectations is disrespect. Meanings of Respect Semantics Challenge Two co-researchers found the word 'respect' to be nebulous and limited in its usefulness. Like the word 'love' there are many variations of meaning in many different contexts. Jack found it inappropriate to think in terms of respect regarding his work situation. Norman struggled to operationalize the concept and found new insight. Jack worked with patients who were inmates in a maximum security prison psychiatric unit. In this situation he faced murderers and rapists whose deeds are not acceptable or respectable. Within this extreme venue, Jack found the concept of respect to have limited applicability. In response to a question about whether respect was a basis of working with a patient he replied, "I think it was more based on a clinical perspective... So to say that was based on my respect for those people — that word respect begins to be a bit of a red herring. It begins to not inform but to mystify a bit." (Jack, 296) Jack found the concept of respect did 58 not apply to the situation in fact was nebulous to the point of mystifying. He did not respect inmates that did not accept responsibility for their actions. In cases where the inmate did have some sense of responsibility for their actions he could respect the process they went through in therapy. "I have seen people in therapy.. .that I maybe didn't have very much respect for.. I did have a certain amount of respect that they were trying at least some of the time, to change, to be better people." (Jack, 348) In the context of this work situation Jack found the use of the term 'respect' to be useful. It could be argues that Jack is using two meanings of the word respect, appraisal respect and care respect. The people he worked with were not admirable in their choice of actions and therefore there was no appraisal respect possible. In the care respect meaning, he could respect their right to progress in therapy in their own way. Norman's reservations stemmed more from the indefiniteness of the word. He stated this dilemma in an interesting flow of consciousness: I don't use the word respect a lot — I don't know if I lost respect for him — respect is a word — I have a hard time with it because it means so many different things for different people.. .1 try and operationally define what respect means so when you ask me the question did I loose respect for him— something was lost! I lost a certain kind of trust in a certain aspect of our relationship, ... so definitely I could say that something was lost. Whether I lost respect for him.. .you know what's interesting is -- what's coming up for me is in tied in with the other case that I mentioned — is that when my aversion, disgust gets triggered maybe that's how I conceive of losing respect for someone. Where that aversion, disgust brings me into my own sense of kind of wanting to withdraw from and then doesn't really allow for that person's being to be to close or connected with. So maybe.. if we define it as such then I could see that I lost.respect because it brought me inward into my own.. .internal defenses to deal with those feelings. (Norman, 214, italics are for emphasis) In this quotation Norman is redefining the meaning of respect for himself and seeing how the dynamic of respect operates in his life. It appears that his struggle with language, the struggle 59 that his initial objection to the indefiniteness of the word is replaced with an experiential knowing. This knowing leads to an acceptance of the concept as more useful. The reservations held by Norman and Jack are presented so their uncertainty about the topic can be considered throughout the development of the process themes. The Process Themes The Trigger The trigger is an action or attitude of another person that challenges the values or world view of the co-researcher. The co-researcher has expectation about how the other person will be and these are not met. The result for the co-researcher was loss of respect. The experience of loss of respect in all cases involved the co-researcher first having a value system that the other person in the story does not share in the same way. The differences in values and expectations were perceived by the co-researcher as incompatible with their own. The process of perception, comparison and judgment will be discussed in the next section. Though chronologically first, the precipitating incident is frequently not identified as such at the time. The awareness of disrespect comes through the feelings of negativity toward the other person. That is, the co-researchers identify the trigger experience on reflection. Irene reflected on her emotional reaction to see a difference in world views was instigating an attitude of disrespect. "I had this preconceived picture of what it was all about. Here's a kid that's from a family that's not very into school. They haven't really bought into school. They are not really concerned about dealing with this girls difficulty. I guess my disrespect was more for her family." (Irene, 201) Norman appears to be watching his process as it is being lived. 60 ... she turned to her son while on the phone with me and saying it's going to cost so much per minute so you better you know make good use of this time. And I noticed that there was a disgust and aversion that rose up in me especially at that time. (Norman, 41) Though some co-researchers were aware of the trigger at the time and some only became aware of the trigger on reflection, the basis trigger of disrespect is an event that challenges their world view. The negative reaction is the product of that challenge. The Reaction Emotional Reaction The reaction is an immediate negative emotional response to the trigger. The emotions reported by the co-researchers include apprehension, annoyance, anger, fear, surprise, sadness, frustration, aversion, disgust, impatience, and scorn. The experience of feelings is usually the first awareness the co-researchers had that all was not well. They acted like a flag to alert the co-researchers to examine the situation anew. Unmet Expectations Agendas are plans that set expectations for events and behaviours of others. The co-researchers reacted when they felt the expected and desired outcome of their work was being impeded. In a game if player A cheats, it forces the player B into a choice that was not part of the agreed rules. Player B has three choices. He can ignore the cheating, he can challenge player A on the cheating, or he can stop playing the game. But player B had only wanted to play the game according to the rules. Now the focus has changed from playing the game to dealing with the rules. In the same way unmet expectations throw one off stride, force one into choices that were not anticipated. Unmet expectations are frequently taken in stride, 61 into choices that were not anticipated. Unmet expectations are frequently taken in stride, however, in this study the researcher specifically asked the co-researchers for stories about instances when their unmet expectation broke their stride. The co-researchers speak of different situations in which they were challenged by unmet expectations. Sometimes it is a personal agenda of the co-researcher that is not adhered to by the other person. Mary struggled with herself to not impose her expectations on her client. Her agenda is based what her personal view of a preferred outcome. Even though I might have a different sense of what's better or best it isn't necessarily what is for that person and so it's a letting go of my own agenda or what I think might be best and it's seeing this other person needs to live their own life. (Mary, 211) Norman felt that the actions of the mother were thwarting his work with a teenage client. His expectation of the mother's co-operation was unmet. "It was a kind of a disgust and um dislike um intolerance and from those feelings coming with an idea that um I'm not going to really get my foot in the door to be helpful with in this situation" (Norman, 49). At times the agenda reflects a basic world view. Irene faced a situation where she perceived preferential treatment being given to one child because of the mother's role in the school. Her agenda is formed by how she thinks the world should be. I felt like this family had sort of jumped the cue because the mom was on the executive of the parent's advisory committee and one of the moms that's in and out of the school all the time helping with things and my initial reaction was — "This isn't fair, I'm sad this is happening to this little girl and they're having tough mornings." but at the same time why do these people have the right have this attended to immediately because mom has gone on a personal basis to the principal, who's gone on a personal basis to my supervisor, who's suggested that I go and work with this family. (Irene, 36) 62 Irene is angry and indignant because her expectations of how her limited time should be assigned are not met. This way of'jumping the queue' is unjust according to Irene's world view. Of interest here is her process, not whether or not her reaction could be judged as fitting. Ken had a double agenda, to run a patient centered unit and to give good medical service. In one instance his agenda to provide the best possible medical attention according to western medical precepts was challenged when a patient wanted to treat a serious bedsore by pouring on white sugar. His unit philosophy agenda, based on his value system, states that patients have a right to choose their treatment. Ken discusses his dilemma in these words: .. .he wanted to do something entirely unconventional and just pour sugar into it — which the cleanliness of that - you know, all the issues that could agree with pouring sugar on.. but I had to do the same thing I mean little red discomfort lights were blazing. And we had to step back and say, "All right, this seems like it might be an atrocity in our culture but that's coming from another culture." And this is very important to him and his wife, it had been recommended by his naturopath of homeopath — so we allowed them to do it. (Ken, 179) The first reaction of "red discomfort lights" developed from his physician agenda that stated that western traditional medicine was best. Then the patient centered agenda called him to deal with his fears and discomfort of allowing a treatment that was seen as atrocious. In the illustration of the "sugar treatment" Ken's initial agenda of western medical practice gave way to a broader agenda of patient centered care. In order to be respectful he shifted his focus from the narrower medical agenda to the broader care for human dignity agenda. There was a line though, that he would not cross. He would not have sanctioned the treatment if it had done harm to the patient. This line marked the boundary between Ken's identity and self respect and the wishes of others. 63 We cannot work without an agenda. They are formed by our goals and prescribe the process by which we will attain those goals. Yet, in these stories, there is a point when agendas became counter-productive. Knowing the boundary between when to loosen an agenda and when to stand firm is part of knowing the self, and self respect. Agendas are necessary and knowing the limit of following agendas is connected to the ability to respect both one's self and others. It is the comparison of the event with our agendas that leads to the judgment. The Judgment By the nature of the thesis question the co-researchers told stories of times when agendas and judgments coloured the perceptions. Comparison, values, desires and agendas interact to form a judgment. The judgment process first compares what we have perceived, with our agendas and value system. (Values and agendas are related in that agendas are set according to values and our desires. Desires and values overlap but are not always the same.) Information received through the co-researchers' senses was processed by their mind to find meaning. Part of this process is comparison of the new perception with knowledge relating to the same topic. There can be pure discernment where the new perception is seen clearly and without distortion. However, in this study the comparisons led to value judgments that labelled the other person's attitudes and behaviours such as "... she's manipulative...," (Leonard 339) and "The mother's contamination..." (Norman, 78). Although the judgment is based on a specific perception of an event in time, it is common to generalize that judgment to a broader scope. For example, interpretation of an 64 event is that we have been insulted. The judgment may conclude that the other person is a dolt. Here the initial event has been compared with previous knowledge and seen as a personal attack. Then our value system says that personal attacks are bad. The next step is to generalize and say the insulter is therefore bad as seen in this quotation, ".. .there was a tendency to think 'well, what a jerk'..." (Pamela, 272). The Behavioural Reaction The reaction came when the co-researcher perceived their agenda to be challenged. There is an element of "taking it personally" as in "I thought he was tainting my work." (Pamela, 54). The co-researchers met this challenge on the continuum between flight or fight. E V E N T • Discernment P> Pure perception - no judgment = r N ^ V Comparison with expectations & values -.. ^ n r e D m i c r Shift from goal to rules v Judgment of person V Judgment generalized to whole person \f FIGHT - ANGER, FRUSTRATION REACTION FLIGHT - WITHDRAWL -frequently out of conscious awareness Figure 2. Reaction to Unmet Expectations The fight reaction was characterized by judgment and some form of anger. The flight reaction was characterized by judgment and withdrawal. A more neutral position was taken by the co-65 researchers who watched their reaction at the time it was happening from a comparatively detached view point. Above is a diagrammatic schema of the reaction. One effect of the reaction is flight. Norman's wanted to disengage from the mother. "Where that aversion, disgust.. brings me into my own sense of wanting to withdraw from and then doesn't really allow for that person's being to be too close or connected with." (Norman 240) Leonard had a similar reaction saying, "I felt really angry.. .My initial reaction was.. .I'm leaving, good-bye. A second effect was a fight reaction. Pamela expresses this using literary hyperbole "I wanted to kill." (Pamela 53) Mary's reaction was to lose trust and become less open. Helen's reaction was to pull back, shut down and get defensive. ... And when I get irritated with something, part of me shuts down.. I'm no longer open to them in the same kind of way.. I can't see them in the same kind of way.. .my own defenses have gotten in the way of... my openness. And for me openness and respect are quite connected. (Helen, 103) Regardless of whether the primary reaction was fight or flight, the effect was to become less open to receiving the other person. Al l co-researchers agreed that the reaction involved a loss of connection with the other person. Stop "Just wait a minute! Just stop! Give your head a shake." You're not thinking very clearly.. .that's not very respectful. (Leonard 102) The stop is a pivotal point where the co-researchers shifted their awareness from living the situation to examining the situation. Their negative reactions motivated them to look again and change direction because they were not congruent with their desire for the 66 good of the other person. The co-researchers have different techniques for stopping. Helen describes how she uses her irritation with a client as a flag to look at herself: I have a judgment with my irritation — that I should not be feeling irritated. I should be noticing it and dealing with it. That it is my stuff if I'm feeling irritated.. .then I need to look at my irritation... (Helen, 74) .. I don't do that at the time. I put a little flag on the experience and go — "you need to pay attention to this later, but for right now it would take me way too long to process that." (125) Pamela describes her experience of stopping and changing from reactive to proactive in these words, "And so I have a tendency to sort of take a deep breath to get away.. .It sort of helps me get conscious. It gets me out of a reactive stage into a proactive stage or state." (Pamela 284,293) Ken also talks of looking for a way to change direction: ... as individuals and as a team have to go through all of that.. What are we uncomfortable with in this respect and how can we step back and regroup so that we still provide a very safe environment that is respectful for the patients who are here? (Ken, 145) Another co-researcher, Irene, expresses her dissatisfaction with the 'space' she was in saying, "I stopped. I thought. I don't know what kind of a head space I was in when I was there, but I don't like it." (Irene, 577) Mary, in one story, shows that she was aware of both the situation and her reaction at the same time: ".. it sounded like she needed time.. .part of me was saying ooop! but the other part of me was saying "Now it's her decision, her life (Mary. 145). The stop is a flash, an illumination that happens quite quickly. "It was like having cold water thrown in my face." (Irene, 588) is the way Irene dramatically related her experience. The stop marks the change from reacting, to investigating the situation. It marks the move to the shift response phase of the process. 67 The Shift Response This section of the process may be seen in the light of're viewing' the event, the self in relation to the event and the other person. That is, re-seeing themselves, re-seeing the other person and re-viewing the situation. For the co-researchers, seeing the self involves a journey of extracting themselves from the emeshment of the reaction situation; looking at their feelings and sometimes also at the underlying cause. There is a movement, a shift in position from the reactionary stance to an examining stance. In the act of seeing themselves the co-researchers found they are more able to see the other person from a different perspective. From the new perspective they can be more accepting and compassionate. Viewing and accepting the self, as well as viewing the other person and accepting them are different parts of the shift response. Re-viewing the self, seeing other and acceptance can be divided into discrete concepts for analysis but in lived experience they are interwoven to make a whole cloth and cannot be separated from the flow of the story into separate threads without losing vital meaning. Re-viewing the Self and Re-viewing the Other Person Re-viewing the self requires a shift of awareness away from the on-going lived experience to a position of witness or spectator of one's actions, thoughts and feelings. A witness records the details of experience without adding opinion or judgment. If there is one pointed concentration on description the mind is not distracted with comparisons to past experiences or expectations or value judgments. There is not an attachment to construing the experience in one light or another. There may be a split in awareness within an individual in 68 which the experience is being witnessed simultaneously as it is being lived or the review may happen in later reflection. In the present research, the co-researchers stood back and examined themselves. One co-researcher reviewed himself in the light of childhood experiences. He recognizes his reaction and searches for more information: ... my processing is just becoming aware of the feelings ~ seeing what is — and actually in processing it — of seeing how the level of my identification with the boy who — because I was also a child of an alcoholic and an only child... so there was some sense of me kind of tapping into my own sense of identification and what made the repulsion there for me where I couldn't be more compassionate with her. So it came back my own child of origin issues. (Norman, 87) Norman relates his process of discovering his feelings, and seeing the dynamic of the reaction situation, his identification with the boy. He goes on to uncover the causal aspect of the identification, his childhood of origin issues. As he accepts his feelings as his responsibility, he is able to move beyond himself to re-view the mother. ...Through processing I made room and...came to respect the mother's style as a way of still trying to be helpful to the boy... (it) opened me up to dealing with this woman.. .the necessity kind of created an opening or an openess for that feeling to be...It required me staying connected on some level... (Norman, 105-125) His processing "made room" for looking again at the mother's situation. He still did not agree with her approach but he could see her in a different light. There was an acceptance of her where she was. In the response Norman found a place of openess, connection and respect. Jack went through a similar process over time but focussed on reviewing his thoughts rather than his feelings. In his experience working with inmates he "was pretty flexible and not highly judgmental when I got into the field but.. .you do maintain a couple of pariahs as convenient scapegoats" (Jack, 96). Sex offenders were one of his pariahs: 69 .. .the word sex offender is so loaded. It is right up there with cannibal.. .It brings to mind the kind of person that I'm describing as being unfit for therapy and respect from my point of view... as I began to meet sex offenders I began to see that they were not all fitting this mold. That there were a lot of different people that were categorized as sex offenders and some of them I began to see that I could work with.. .working originally with people who had murdered others, from that approach I began to be able to separate the crime that I do not have empathy for, from the person that I do have empathy for. And by being able to do that with murderers I found it wasn't all that difficult for me to make the move to do that with sex offenders. .1 broke down a stereotype that I had.. .what I just said probably illuminates the process that I went through to become a little less judgmental. (Jack, 63) In this case Jack looked at his previous experience with murderers to see if he could generalize his response to sex offenders. To do this he had to set aside his stereotype to make a space for a new possible vision. Becoming less judgmental allowed him room to look again at sex offenders and see whether he could separate the crime from the person as he had done with murderers. He found he could accept some sex offenders as clients. On a lighter note, Mary speaks of struggling with her defensiveness in a situation where she feels minimized by another. As with Jack, it is an ongoing effort to see the other person and to see how she will be in the situation. She is able to pull back in part but in part remains emotionally involved. So then that immediately puts me on guard and I struggle with putting up a wall of defensiveness and... still being open to where this person is. I do I back off a bit so there is some defensiveness, .. .but I'm aware that I still am trying to say to myself — 'This person has their own needs and their own problems and their own defensiveness and so how can I be present to this. (Mary 511) Pamela experiences the same dynamic in the opposite order. First she saw the other person's pain then she realized she was separate from that. This allowed her to accept the situation and honour the other person: In other words it's a kind of reframing that begins to happen because once the realization is made that this man is not attacking.. But that it awakened something 70 inside of him that made him anxious and also it got in touch with something that was painful for him. And this is how he goes about dealing with his pain... And I realized that it didn't have to represent who I was. Nor did it have to threaten what I believed or wanted to teach... You validate their point of view. You honour where they are. (Pamela, 86) In one story, Ken is faced with a cross cultural situation involving the gay population with AIDS. In the palliative care unit family members are allowed to spend time overnight with patients. At first, when this involved homosexual partners, it caused discomfort. On examination he chose to "relax" his definitions of what was permissible to be more accepting and respectful. He looked beyond his cultural norms to a deeper level of meaning: We say here that families can spend time with a patient, they can spend time overnight and as time past in terms of partner — homosexual partners, spending the night together in a hospital bed, it's very difficult not to feel that you are intruding on something incredibly intimate and it took me a while to recognize it wasn't so much an issue.. .that this was a gay couple that nobody's comfortable with having to do nursing care, .. .with somebody who's'in the intimacies of holding somebody.. .It's just that it's a sacred time for any partners to be holding each other in a bed. And that I realized was actually the bigger issue than whether it was two men or a heterosexual relationship. (Ken, 143) Ken was aware of his discomfort intruding on an intimate encounter between family members. Like Jack, he compared this situation with the similar situation. In this case he looked again to see if his discomfort was because of homosexuality, and found the similar feelings of discomfort witnessing heterosexual intimacy. Through seeing the real issue was witnessing intimacy of any kind, Ken became accepting of observing homosexual intimacy. He also examined his concept of family, observed his patient's concept of family and made a choice to broaden his definition. He concluded that: .. .in terms of that personhood and how we're defined by the cultures that we're a part of or the families that we choose to be a part of needs to be respected in terms of what we do...I think that with regards to the gay population because we provide care 71 to persons with AIDS, we needed to relax our definition of context of self with regard to family of choice. (Ken, 113) The co-researchers sought to understand their experience by examining the feelings involved in the reaction, the initial trigger situation, and possibly the causal issues of the reaction. To conduct the examination they sought distance from their feelings to witness the event from a more detached of perspective awareness. This enabled them to have a better knowledge and understanding of what might be happening for the other person. The result of stopping and taking a deeper, broader look at the co-researchers became more accepting of themselves, the other person and the situation. The search for clarity and meaning is situated within the concepts of identity, self respect and boundaries. Acceptance The existence of acceptance of self and acceptance of the other person has been documented in the previous section. It remains to underscore the salient points of this phase of the process. First it must be stated what acceptance is not. Acceptance is not agreeing with the other person. Norman did not agree with the mother's ideas. He accepted that her reality could be understood when looking from her perspective. Acceptance is not liking the other person. Jack did not necessarily like the sex offender and he certainly did not 'like' the crime but he could accept them him as a client willing to grow. Acceptance is not a judgment, an acquiescence or a compromise. Acceptance stands alone separated from thought, feelings and actions. Acceptance of self is the incorporation of the what was seen in the review of self into the previous knowledge of the self. It is not enough just to see what is happening and remain 72 aloof from that as in "Ya, I'm angry and so what?" but to take it in on a 'gut' level and take responsibility for it.. .to say, "Ya, what I feel/think/did is not congruent with my values and expectations of who I am and I can reconsider my choices for future actions based on that." (The negative 'not congruent' situation is stipulated here as accepting our positive qualities is not usually a challenge.) Re-viewing the other person means to see their actions, feelings and thoughts from their perspective of the world as accurately as possible. Accepting the other person is incorporation this view into my knowledge of that person. It is allowing them to be the totality of who they are. Acceptance allows you to put forward suggestions about their future behaviour but it does not allow the imposition of one's agenda on them. Acceptance is the essence of respect. The Outcome As the reader continues through this section, the researcher would bring forward two parameters of the research. First the use of positive and negative terms does not imply a value judgment. Rather they indicate a limitation of a language that connotes negative with bad and positive with good. The researcher is not indicating that any one outcome or stance on the part of the co-researchers is better than another. Second, is the researcher is not quantifying the amount or assessing the accuracy of an individual's inner states from the interviews obtained. With these parameters in mind the reader will turn back to the topic of outcomes. The shift answers the question "What is happening here?" The outcome answers "What do I do next?" It includes the resolution of feelings, thoughts and actions resulting from the intrapersonal musings and demonstrates how this resolution is manifested behaviour. 73 In all cases the initial negative emotional reaction did not manifest in what would be considered negative or aggressive behaviour toward the other person. The behavioural Non-acceptance Disengagement < No respect Neutrality Partial acceptance Reserved connection Partial respect -> Transcendence Acceptance Connection Respect Figure 3 . Continuum of Outcome Responses outcomes of the stories fell between the poles of continued interaction with connection, and no further interaction. The intrapersonal outcomes ranged from non-judgmental acceptance of and respect for the other person to judgmental non-acceptance and no respect. The story outcomes can be grouped into broad categories that mark places on a continuum. Acceptance, connection and respect will be discussed first, then non-acceptance, disengagement and no respect and finally partial acceptance, reserved connection and qualified respect. In sixteen of the eighteen vignettes the co-researcher's response was to connect with the other person with genuine openess to see their individuality. The co-researchers were able to be present to the other person with little opaqueness of their agendas and judgments clouding their vision. This is not to say that the co-researchers agreed with the ideas of the other person or that they condoned their actions. It is to say that the co-respondents had acknowledged their responsibility in the situation. They had accepted and respected 74 themselves. They had set aside their agendas and judgments. This left a space for interacting with the other person with genuine openness. In previous quotations, the reader may have noted examples of the outcome. For instance, Ken agreed to his patient trying the sugar treatment, as to the best of his knowledge it would do no harm (Ken, 202). Mary listened to her client, allowing the client to explore her world at her pace (Mary, 232). Pamela was able to validate the other person's point of view (Pamela, 86). Leonard with careful wording, did not influence his client with his value system, rather Leonard encouraged his client to make his choice (Leonard, 100, 234). In these examples the co-researchers had replaced their original negative emotional reaction with concrete behavioural openness toward the other person. Furthermore the behaviour was congruent with their feelings and attitudes regarding the situation. These are four examples from sixteen stories with similar outcomes. Two co-respondents defined a limit to respect from their point of view. In both these examples the co-researchers do not speak about any musings that would come under the 'Shift Response' theme in this thesis. They talked of the trigger, the reaction, the stop and then the outcome. Talking in general, rather than as part of a story, Jack related that he did not respect patients that did not accept any responsibility for their actions. He chose to disengage from such therapeutic encounters. In the second example Leonard recounted how he stopped his negative reaction, telling himself to calm down. He jumps to his outcome response: "I inoculated myself against her attitude." (Leonard, 414) and maintained professional behaviour with her. While remaining professional on the outside, he did not respect her "unprofessional behaviour." Both these examples depict perimeters to respect. 75 The final outcome lies between the first examples of openness, connection and respect and the second examples of neutral behaviour with no respect. It is an outcome characterized by ambivalence. An examination of the story vis a vis the process themes, will illustrate ambivalence throughout the story: (I puts)a protectiveness around myself in relationship to that person (and feels she is) not ready to become vulnerable to that person. (Mary, 550) (on a personal level, though she is willing to be open and interactive to work on projects) .. this person does a lot of good and that she is a very defensive person, and Do feels sad for that (533) ... And I guess my own expectations got in the way there Or my own expectations set me up to be hurt because I was assuming or expecting that there'd be a little bit more respect on their part for me and who I am or at least give me the benefit of the doubt to find out who I am before operating on whatever image was there. (570) ... in the counselling situation ...on my part there's a great reverence for the other person, that they would be that trusting of me at that point... so in the situation I just described that wasn't there (584) ... There's no personal experience on an emotional level of.. connection (595) the degree of respect - there was no opportunity to connect as persons (600). Mary sees her own defensive reaction yet is only partially able to control it inwardly (see self). Mary sees the other person's defensiveness, feels sad for her, sees her controlling behaviour and also sees her goodness yet is incepting of her minimizing behaviour toward others (see other). Mary sees that her expectations set her up to be hurt, adjusts her expectations yet does not set them aside (acceptance of other). Mary's ability to see is clear. Her choice to maintain her expectations leads to a partial acceptance of the other's behaviour and attitude. This in turn leads to the outcome. She chose to act with openness and understanding toward her superior yet remained less trusting and more reserved in her interactions. Mary's respect was qualified by her expectations. The outcome responses are composed of outward behaviour and intrapersonal feelings, thoughts and attitudes. The division into three categories is an expediency of 76 presenting the underlying ideas. The solidarity of sixteen stories into the first category presented is misleading in that is indicates a sameness in response. Intrinsic Themes Continued Conceptions of Respect Drawn from the Interviews The co-researchers' meanings of respect were drawn from the interviews in two ways, through analysis of their conceptions of respect and analysis of their lived experiences of attaining respect. Three distinct conceptions emerged corresponding to the philosophical categories of observantia respect, appraisal respect (Cranor, 1983) and care respect (Dillon, 1992). One co-researcher spoke of having respect for dangerous attributes "like having respect for a shark. (Jack, 25)" This respect is borne of fear, unlike the others that are borne of regard. It parallels Cranor's (1983) observantia respect. The two other conceptions of respect are differentiated by context and will be spoken of in more detail. Appraisal Respect Two contexts of relationship were explored in this research, the peer context and the professional/client context. In the context of peer relationships, two co-researchers spoke of situations where they required certain attributes in order to be respectful, the need for respect to be reciprocated and the need for credibility in the other person. However, it is not so much the attributes themselves that are distinguishing but rather that they are required. Hence, respect in these situations was conditional upon the other person having certain qualities. Leonard related his thoughts in this interchange: (362) Leonard ... And you know the big issue for me is at what point do you maintain your professional behaviour you know and you know it's important to me that respect and in quite a different context than my client. But I think one needs to be assertive as well — saying that's 77 not that's not appropriate behaviour. So there's always that interesting kind of dichotomy when it comes to respecting others and being respected. (449) ... the more she spoke, the less respect I had for her. ...When it came to keeping my stuff out of it I just simply said on the outside we'll do this but in the interior .. .you're never going to know what I really think..and I'm never going to be able to respect you. (549)H: So there is a sense of reciprocity when you are dealing with peers? (556)Leonard: Yes. That's part of what a professional is that you have a professional opinion. We don't always share that but I think we need to respect that we are going to have a professional opinion and then whether that's different or the same it's still professional. (573)H: When you are talking about professional opinions is sounds as though it's very similar to what you were talking about with your client in that somebody can have a different value system (Leonard: um hum) from you and you can still put your value system to one side and listen to their point of view and take from that what you will or not (Leonard: um hum, um hum Leonard: Right. H: But you can still hear that point of view? Leonard: That's right but when its really a personal opinion that's sort of masquerading as a professional opinion .. I think that's part of the loss of respect. You're deluding yourself into thinking that I believe that that is a professional opinion. In these excerpts, professional behaviour indicating a reciprocity of respect is required from a colleague as a prerequisite to Leonard respecting 'on the inside.' Despite inner disrespect, his behaviour toward her remained respectful, or polite and in accordance with professional behaviour. This concept of respect mirrors appraisal respect (Cranor, 1983) which decrees that a person must exhibit some quality or attain some accomplishment to be respected. The second example from Mary's story is found in the Context portion of this thesis. Both Mary and Leonard had different concepts of respect in the client/counsellor relationship. In this professional context they worked within themselves to respect 78 unconditionally. This form of respect requires the respecter to transcend their agendas to be open to receiving the other person as they are, hence it will be called transcendent respect. In total, fifteen of the eighteen vignettes dealt with degrees of transcendent respect. Transcendent Respect Within transcendent respect, which is similar to Dillon's (1992) care respect, five components emerged as relevant to the experiences and thoughts of the co-researchers. The first forms the base from which respect is possible. A knowledge of one's self and a recognition of one's choices are paramount in being able to set aside one's agenda to see the other person. Along with this strong sense of identity is the need for self respect. If one's values are congruent with one's choices there is self respect. Identity and self respect form the foundation for respecting others. The second prerequisite for transcendent respect emanates from the personal philosophy on the nature of human qualities. A belief or trust that people are capable of making choices about situations that affect their lives is an essential step toward respecting others. There are times, such as medical emergencies or immanent potential suicide when choices may be made for others, but to remain respectful in these times it is necessary to be acting for the good of the other. A trust in the potential goodness in people is another fundamental belief. There is a sense that people are doing the best they can at any given moment in time, however imperfect that is and if one looks behind the imperfections there is goodness somewhere. In some situations it may be difficult to maintain this belief. Mike found himself questioning this value in the face of unremorseful violent offenders. However, 7 9 believing that people are capable of directing their lives and have basic goodness are two factors underlying the ability to respect transcendently. Yet another foundational component of respect is the need to act for the good of the other person. Being open to seeing the other person from their perspective of what is good for them could allow one to use that knowledge to their disadvantage. Insight and accurate perception are not enough. There must be a conviction to act in the best interests of the other. Now that the underpinnings of respect have been laid, we turn to the experience of transcendent respect itself. The most notable characteristic is openness. Openness implies setting aside one's expectations and desires, to clear the mind to allow information from the other person to come in. There is a seeking to understand the other from the perspective of their world view and of what good is for them. Further, openness implies an acceptance of the other person as they are without judgment. Individual actions may be assessed but there is not a judgment of the whole person from specific actions. Accepting the other person as they are allows us to move forward without imposing our agenda on them. This does not mean that we cannot ask for changes or work toward changes; it means that our world view will not be imposed on the other against their will or through coercion. Complete openness is something for which to strive. It has a spiritual quality connected to a belief in the potential goodness and value of individual people. This belief urges us to transcend the dissonance of unmet expectations and be open to the 'receiving' the person as they are, acknowledging both similarities and differences. Respect is described by Mary as "... a reverence for the inner goodness of a person...," by Helen as "being open to 80 receiving and acknowledging the spirit in the other person" (121), by Norman as synonymous with compassion and by Pamela as synonymous with love. The spiritual quality of respect transcends the daily worldly existence of comparisons and judgment. Respect is not an all or nothing state of being. There is a continuum of respect from transcendence to neutrality. Neutrality requires staying open to a person and not intruding on their process with one's agenda. It implies a duality of thoughts and feelings, as though there is some judgment but in the interest of doing good to the other that is set aside as much as possible to permit as much openness as possible. The more purely we are able to rid ourselves of thoughts and feelings about the other person or about anything else, the more we are able to be present to receiving the other. (It is not just preconceptions of the other person that can get in the way of respect, it is any thought or feeling that distracts us in the moment.) Complete purity in this regard is total transcendence of the self so that only pure conscious awareness is present. In any given situation respect usually lies somewhere a continuum between neutrality and transcendence. There is a consensus among the co-researchers that the basis of respect is setting aside one's thoughts and feelings to see and accept who the person is. Respect is ".. .my response to them to integrate their values and choices into my understanding of who they are, without necessarily trying to change them." (Ken, 309) Respect includes acting for the good of the person from their concept of what is good for them to the greatest degree possible while remaining true to one's values and self respect. Respect is independent of agreement or disagreement, liking or disliking, or whether they like you. Transcendent respect is an internal state that does not rely of the qualities of the other person. 81 (OUTCOME) ( ACCEPTANCE RESPECT j RE-VIEW SELF OTHER I ~ STOP JUDGMENT OF OTHER PERSON , - I , ( REACTION) IDENTITY i SELF-RESPECT BELIEFS VALUES KNOWLEDGE Figure 4. Model of Attaining Respect 82 Summary The study of attaining respect when in the face of value differences has revealed the foundations on which respect is built, factors intrinsic to respect, and a process of attaining respect when it has been lost. The progress from disrespect to respect is a journey that brings the totality of a person into play. The beginning, following diagram 4 on the previous page, is with the foundation of personhood. As a person we have beliefs about the human condition. The co-researchers spoke of the belief that people are capable of goodness, capable of insight, capable of making choices that affect themselves, capable of growth and a belief that there is a spiritual dimension to life. The spirit has always eluded definition. It can only be alluded to by its effects. Transcending the beliefs and the identity is the spiritual nature of human existence. One aspect of the spiritual nature of interest here is the quality of separating the self from that which it is aware of. A second is letting go of or becoming unattached from desires and expectations. At the core of identity is also the sum of the knowledge, intellectual, experiential, emotional and spiritual that has accumulated to date. A value system has been developed as part of that knowledge from which arise expectations for ones' self and others. Together these form identity. The extent to which we are aware of our beliefs, our knowledge and our values is the extent to which our identity is a conscious tool in our lives. 83 Identity is the basis of self respect. The degree to which our identity is congruent with our value system is the degree to which we can have self respect. If our value system includes acceptance of imperfections then we can have respect for ourselves in spite of the imperfections. Self respect in turn is one factor in determining boundaries. A person's boundary is the limit of the individual self in a given situation. The boundary is created in part by the agenda, what the person wants to achieve, and by their values. Identity and self respect are the foundations from which we lead our daily lives. Arising from and inherent in the foundation are our desires. There are two categories of desires, first, those which fill basic needs as in Maslow's (1970) hierarchy of needs and second, wants for luxuries such as a Ferrari. Desires are ideas, dreams. To bring them into fruition or manifestation in the world a goal is formed. To form a goal means to choose one desire for manifestation. To attain the goal, plans or agendas are made. Expectations for ourselves and expectations for others emanate from agendas. In the case under study the attainment of goals requires acting in concert with others. This leads to expectations for others to fulfill our idea of what they should do. Desires, goals and expectations exist in a context. The context acts as a container to keep endeavours on track toward the goal. It has rules to follow in the execution of actions toward the attainment of a goal. The context rules are kept largely out of awareness as the rules of a well known game are not thought of during the play. An event takes place; an action or interaction between two or more people in the context of the desire, goal and expectation. In this event the one player has broken a rule that 84 the other player thought was a rule common of the game. She is thrown off stride. The game cannot continue as planned. Frequently out of awareness but sometimes as a concurrent awareness is the judgment process. Judgment of the other person. The judgment enters when the agenda and values of one personis imposed on another. If they are congruent then the other person is respected for having similar values and attributes. Cranor's, (1983), appraisal respect in which a person is respected if they have attributes that another admires, fits this description. However, the starting point for this research was: 'What happens when unmet expectations are unacceptable?' Unmet expectations are unacceptable the breeding ground for disrespect is formed. The non-acceptance of unmet expectation dictates that it cannot be our responsibility. Something is wrong with the other person, with their actions, with their attitude, with what they want to have happen. This judgment reaches out and wants the other person to be different. From this judgment springs a negative emotional reaction. But another of awareness comparison is also taking place. There is a comparison of the negative emotional reaction with the concept of who we want to be, the idea of what one wants to be as a person. There is a lack of congruence between the negative reaction and the expectations for themselves. How one is feeling and what one want to be are at odds. In comes the STOP. The unimpeded march of progress is halted. "What's happening here? Something isn't right." A re-view begins. It can happen in any order and often circles through both in increasing depth searching for understanding. There is a re-view of self. Why am I feeling 85 this? The search may be of the event only. It may include a reach into the past, the childhood, to find the source of the reactive negative emotions. There is also a re-view of the other person. From what goals and expectations are they operating? Can I make sense of their actions by understanding their world view? As a result of this review new information comes, new insights come. 'Seeing' alone is not enough for respect. One can say, "I've looked at my values and actions and see I was reactive here. I've fixed that. Also I understand that X is causing your behaviour but I still think you are an idiot." Alternatively, there may be non-acceptance of the self. Being accurate with our sight and insight is not enough for respect. One crucial element must accompany these and indeed may eliminate the need for detailed soul-searching and understanding and that is acceptance. Acceptance of self and acceptance of the other person as the self is and as they are at that time. Acceptance is respect. Not liking. Not agreement. Acceptance. As Ken so beautifully says respect is ".. to integrate their values and choices into my understanding of who they are, without necessarily trying to change them." The writer so far has presented acceptance or non-acceptance as a polarity to illustrate the process. In reality there is a continuum between acceptance and non-acceptance and echoed in a continuum between respect and disrespect. The denouement is the behavioural outcome. The behaviour was one of willingness being present to the other person, being openness, listening, validation and connection to use the words of the co-researchers. The behaviour allowed the other person to make their choices about themselves. 86 The analysis has looked at the experiences eight people related about times they found it challenging to be respectful. It has examined the foundations of respect, the process through which the co-researchers went to become more respectful and at factors intrinsic to a respectful way of being. 87 CHAPTER V Discussion Conclusions The analysis of the stories and thoughts of eight professionals revealed the foundations of respect, intrinsic factors involved in respect, a process of attaining respect and meanings of respect. Two concepts of respect from the philosophical literature have relevance to the outcome of this study, Cranor's (1983) appraisal respect and Dillon's (1992) care respect. Appraisal respect is respect for a person having attributes that are valued by the respecter. Dillon's care respect encompasses appraisal respect and extends it to include respect for the value of human existence. Appraisal respect was seen as operative in the two stories involving peer relationships. In these relationships, there are equivalent rules and expectations for conduct. Perhaps also the expectations are higher for adherence of the rules. This would explain the requirement of some co-researchers for reciprocity of respect. Dillon's (1992) definition of care respect fits well with the present research. The salient points in Dillon's arguments are: a) persons are both a particular individual 'me' and part of humanity with shared characteristics of others, b) respect is paying attention to a person and trying to see the world from their perspective, c) respect is acknowledging and accepting the person's differences as well as their similarities, but does not extend to endorsing the despicable, and d) respect requires acting with a sympathetic care and concern for the person that is similar to the notion of Agape. Finally care respect must also be applied 88 to one's self as self respect. The definition of transcendent respect emanating from this study is congruent with Dillon's notion of care respect. The writer is assuming that the level of caring for others to the point of Agape as posited by Dillon parallels the sense of spirituality referred to by the co-researchers. The meaning of respect drawn from this study is almost congruent with Rogers' concept of unconditional positive regard. Rogers (1967) defines unconditional positive regard as accepting other persons as they are, regarding them as a separate individuals without evaluation of their thoughts, feelings or actions. He adds that unconditional positive regard is a kind of love and exhibits a genuine caring for the potentialities of the person. A core aspect of respect in this study is the need to see the world from the other's point of view as well as possible. Rogers' implies such a stance in stating that unconditional positive regard must be judgment free but it is not clear. This study of lived experience goes beyond definition. As Dillon said, respect is easy when there are similarities between people. It is in the face of differences that we are challenged to respect. This study describes a process through which people go to change an initial reactive response into a care respect response. Knowledge of the self, self respect and boundaries are simultaneously foundational to and inherent in the process. The beginning of the process is marked by two or more people meeting to accomplish a task. Coming together to perform a task situates the process in a context. The context contains rules and expectations for the attitudes and behaviour of the participants. The scene is set for action. An event happens in which the expectations of behaviour are different for the other participant and this difference is unacceptable. What makes it unacceptable? Is it the narrow 89 view of one's limited ego that is attached to certain desires? Do these desires say: "If only you behave this way, I will be O.K. My idea of the world, that forms my identity, must remain intact and you must agree with me so that world may be maintained." There is a part of the ego that is dependent on or attached to how others behave to confirm the Tightness of my world view. When this is not confirmed, is even challenged the trigger has been pulled. There follows a reaction involving judgment and negative emotions. This is an outgoing reaction is aggressive in intent as it wants to change the other person so they conform to one's world view. The world view is narrow, focused only on the wants and desires of the individual. However, something in the value system of the reactionary person finds dissonance in her negative emotions. The value that desires the good of the other person and the negative feelings are incongruent. There are two bases of operation. One focuses on the attachment to ordering the world according to one's view. The other is interested in the good of the other from their perspective. She stops. In response to this dissonance, awareness is shifted from the task at hand to examine the reaction. She turns to self-reflection to understand the meaning of the dissonance and eliminate it as much as possible. It requires a letting go of the expectations, of the desire for a specific outcome. A reorganization of one's world view without the expectation is required. One must have faith in one's existence without acknowledgment from the external world. It is a place of no ego. It is a place of the spirit. One moves from a small self to a more profound Self. Acknowledgment that one is okay without the other person being a certain way is an 9 0 acceptance that the Self is independent of the other's behaviour and attitudes. This creates a space, some room within that is empty. In this space the other person is looked at again with an honest desire to perceive the other from their perspective of the world. By letting go of one's expectations there is room in consciousness to embrace the other person. They no longer have to be a certain way to confirm one's world view. Truly receiving another from their point of view is more than just looking again. Receiving another as they are is accepting their view of themselves and integrating it into one's view of who they are. There is a shift from a narrower agenda to a wider agenda happens during the review and acceptance of self and other. The limited expectations of how the other should behave expand encompass the expectation of the other in their concept of who they are. The outcome of the process lies in behavioural actions that are respectful and congruent with the inner feelings. Respect is a response to another that acts, thinks and feels for the good of the other person. What is considered the good of the other takes into account the other's view of what is good for them. This study has found the definitions of Dillon's care respect and Rogers' unconditional positive regard to be virtually the same as those drawn from the experiences and ideas of the co-researchers. The process of attaining respect in the face of value differences describes an intrapersonal journey that is new to the field of psychology. 91 Implications for Theory This study focused on experiences of respect in the context of different values. Rogers' concept of unconditional positive regard was intended as a guide for the philosophical position of psychotherapists while working with clients. However, it has been seen in this study to be the same as the concept of respect held by the members of the helping professions interviewed, including a doctor and a teacher. Furthermore, many participants asked themselves to treat all persons with care respect not just their clients. The writer believes that there is a place within the field of counselling psychology for a theory of respecting persons. The present study makes a small contribution in presenting a process model of attaining respect when faced with persons with different values. Intrinsic and foundational factors are identified and integrated into the process. The study also gives a beginning definition of respect and reveals some of the dynamics involved in being respectful. Respecting clients is a core requisite of counsellors. Today, in our increasingly multi-cultural society the need for all to respect the differences between persons has taken on heightened significance. Therefore, there is greater need to understand this human endeavour. Study Limitations and Future Research Suggestions This study on respect has several limitations common to phenomenological research techniques. First, although the researcher made a serious effort to bracket her assumptions and personal experience, some bias undoubtedly exists in the choice of interview questions, interpretation of the interviews and the analysis of the data that affects the results of this study. Second, the co-researchers, though candid about their stories, may have kept private some aspects that would have lent richness to the study. Third, though the reader of this 92 research, who might not be a member of the helping professions, may identify with the experiences of the co-researchers, the results are only generalizable to the population of helping professionals in the context of performing their work. The study is also has a limitation common to case study research design, namely a higher number of participants may have made the study more comprehensive. Though it appeared that the categories of themes were exhaustive, a larger population of co-researchers might have revealed further themes. Although the co-researchers selected for this study met the selection criteria, they all came from a narrow band of helping profession careers. The study could be enlarged to include other kinds of helping professionals and also workers in the helping field who are not professionals. Do lawyers, social workers, nurses and professors for example, share the same process for attaining respect? Would they place the same emphasis on care respect as the participants of this study? Do child care workers, nurses aide, group home workers, volunteers and nursing home workers share similar ideas on what it means to be respectful of persons? The choice of co-researchers for the study was limited to the helping profession. The study would be could also be expanded to other professions. Would there be a difference between care respect and appraisal respect among people not involved in the helping professions such as engineers, computer programmers, electricians and hairdressers? Would people in non-helping careers have the same emphasis on respect for the dignity of persons? This study was mostly confined to the professional work situation. The majority of stories regarded the professional/client relationship where the credo is to promote the good of 93 others. Further research of the same group in collegial and peer relationships would extend the the generalizabihty of this study. It could also potentially add interesting new dimensions in the variations of conceptions of respect for persons. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, the co-researchers selected for this study were limited to Caucasian North Americans. How do persons from other cultures experience respect? Is their sense of self similar the the North American concept of self? Would they place the same emphasis on the individual? Would other people from other cultures go through the same process to attain respect? These are very important questions that must be paramount in future studies into the phenomena of respect for persons. Implication for Counselling The process model presented may be used in the training of therapists. From time to time we all experience a reaction to expectations unmet. In a counselling situation this reaction acts counter to the good of the client. By understanding the dynamic involved in the creation of the reaction the student may develop flags that will help her recognize reactive situations quickly. The model also offers a solution, it illuminates the path out of the reaction to a respectful response. The implications of the model therefore, are in teaching a student to identify the reaction, give guidance in how to look for the source of the dissonance, and provide steps to take to be respectful. The experience of respect encompasses and goes beyond empathy. In training counsellors there is an emphasis, in approaches such as Egan's (1990), on teaching a "You feel.. .because" formula that allows for an expression of empathy (for the client) through active listening. The focus is on skill, what the counsellor does, rather than the counsellor's 94 ability to be present to the client which is a way of being. Though the shift from one to the other comes naturally to some, for others it would be helpful to gain an experiential knowing of the differences. The model of respect, in particular the acceptance phase, is not a skill to be taught but a way of being-in-the-world or dasein. It is the writer's opinion there is little or maybe no distinction between being respectful, empathetic or compassionate when there is a pure degree of acceptance. The distinctions become conceptual differences based on the point of view of the person using the word rather than experiential differences. The model could also be used in professional development of professionals. As such it could be extended beyond the counselling profession to include other helping professionals such as, teachers, doctors, nurses, and social workers. A second implication for counselling centers on the supervision of counsellors and counsellors-in-training. When a counsellor experiences counter transference, in which the counsellor reacts subconsciously to the client from unresolved personal issues, it might be equivalent to the reaction phase. The model presented offers a dynamic that gives structure to the work the counsellor needs to do on their issues. It focuses the counsellor what triggered their experiences then leads them to bring their subconscious expectations into the conscious realm where they can be resolved. In doing this self examination the counsellor is moved from being stuck in the reaction to the shift response phase of the model. The quality of the work done will determine the degree and nature of their ability to accept the client as they are at that moment in time. This is particularly important for those counsellors in contexts where they are working with clients that have already been judged by society and found lacking. 95 A third possible implication centers on using the model for screening applicants of counselling programs. A possible use would be to present the applicant with a dialogue in v which a counsellor is in a reactive situation with a client. The counsellor's responses and unmet expectations would be obvious in the dialogue. The prospective student could be asked to comment on particular parts of the transcript. This might enable the selection committee to have a better idea of the values and choices that the applicant makes. The implications for counselling are seen in the area of student training and professional development to broaden understanding of the role of respect in their work as well as providing a framework for being respectful in the counselling situation. The model may also be used in supervision of counsellors and students to facilitate working through personal issues that are hindering their work. Finally the model may be used for screening applicants for programs in counselling psychology. Summary A hermeneutic-phenomenological multiple case study approach was taken in the exploration of respect in the face of differences. A process was revealed as the participants struggled to attain respect. Knowledge of the self, self respect and boundaries simultaneously foundational and intrinsic factors weaving through the process. Resting on the foundation of identity and self respect the process begins. It is situated in a context that defines a task and the expected rules of behaviour for accomplishing that task. Often these rules are out of awareness with each person assuming both use the same rules. Expectations are smashed as one person does not follow the rules. The other reacts with negative emotions — but wait she is not happy with herself, she is feeling ill toward the other but she is dedicated to the good of 96 the person. She stops. At this point in the process awareness is shifted from the task to search for the meaning of the discord within. There is a letting go of agenda with its accompanying expectations and an acceptance of self. This clears the way to re-view the other person, to look at them again. Without the distorted lenses of expectations it is possible to see the person from their point of view. Then the key step to the threshold of respect is taken, acceptance of the other person as they are. 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The line numbers given in the body are close approximations as the formatting process changed the line numbers. 1 Transcript #1 Helen 2 3 H. My thesis is on your experience of respect. (Helen: uh uh) Um.. .and how you frame that experience 4 for yourself. And I am wondering if you can think of a time for me when being respectful to somebody 5 else was something you had to work at. 6 7 Helen: Ah hum, ah, There's three incidences that come to mind. One of them is current. It's kinda going 8 on in one of the groups I'm leading right now. (H. Um hum). So that might be the best one 'cause I'm 9 really having to actively work with that right now. Do you want me to tell you about all three of them or 10 just about one of them, or 11 12 H. Well. If you are comfortable with that one that sounds like a good one because it is just that struggle . 13 14 Helen: In some ways the struggles - well not, I was going to say that it is around a similar theme - like 15 two of them are similar, two of them are pretty much the same thing and one of them is a little bit 16 different and it has to do mainly with men, women and relationships between men and women and 17 whether men are respectful of women or not (H. um hum) Right. And so degrees of how sexist they are 18 in their attitude and stuff like that or what in my mind is sexism is sexist attitude toward women and a 19 What's happening with this fellow is I can see that he feels quite insecure in some ways. I won't identify 20 him or anything, but that he is in a lot of pain. It is a group for people that are newly separated in 21 relationship. He's in immense pain and one of the ways that he gets control of the situation is to kind of 22 do this male preening thing you know where men are are the ones who are in charge so he sort of takes 23 on the role of the leader and acts as if everything is together and he has all this information to 24 disseminate to the group. Right. So there is the part of me that is watching him do this that's that's' 25 going I can see this that this man is in pain Right (H. um hum) That there's um and that this is one way 26 for him to move out of that a little bit. It doesn't entirely that that is really what is happening for him but 27 it's one thing that he does right? 28 That's my way of kind of being able to receive what is happening from him without being reactive to it. 29 When it is possible for me to kinda see the pain that he's in and frame this behaviour more in terms of 30 dynamics that are happening for him rather than that this guy is a jerk. Right (laugh) (H. um hum) 31 That's the main thing that helps me step back. Now the thing that I have to work with myself is finding 32 a way of talking about this in a way which is .. . challenging but non-confrontational... .or.. .you know 33 what I mean, that's challenging but where its done in a way that it doesn't feel like an insult or whatever 34 like that (H. um hum.. .um hum...) that's my challenge for right now. Figuring out how to work with 3 5 this in terms of group dynamics (H. um hum) 36 37 H. How do you feel when um... (Helen: That's a great question.) 3 8 What is your reaction to him, like your feeling a reaction to him. 39 40 Helen: (big sigh) Um feel like pulling back. I feel irritated, um so it's those are the feelings I have 41 to work with and those are the things that those are the reasons why I have to think carefully about what 42 to say because I know that I have my own reaction in there that is getting in the way of .. where it's just 43 kind of.. being ... shooting straight from the hip. Like there's a certain place where it irritates me 44 personally what he is doing personally as the person that's facilitating the group right. 45 46 H. Yah, so I just want to check out that I have heard this. Um You're irritated with him because he is 47 ... .b b behaving, putting behaviour out into the group that is kind of dominating (Helen: yes yah )... and 48 controlling behaviour into the group in a kind of I know it all attitude (Helen: um hum H. um hum ) and 49 this is somehow... in conflict with .. .I'm not quite sure what. If you are irritated it sounds as though you 105 50 are bumping up against something (Helen: um hum) And Iwas wondering if .. .one of the things in 51 the study is to look at different values, if people have different values I'm wondering if that is part of it 52 or what ..what it is what your experience is that you are being exactly irritated with. 53 54 Helen: um hum um hum pause... .Part of it has to do with um just a sense that he is taking the group 55 over, like he is speaking more than other people um.. which he's just taking up a lot of space in the 56 group. Right? Which I think makes other people take up less space. I don't know that is kinda vague, 57 that's not being very clear, um... I'm irritated because the other thing is that it feels not real, it's a 58 persona something that the person is putting on its not what their real state is. Like he'll come in a talk 59 about in utter despair and depressed and all that and then he will get into being an expert in how to 60 handle all this stuff and it's kind of like "Oh yah, well fun's really important in relationships, ya know, 61 you need to have fun." And he has just been talking about how he is devastated and can hardly move 62 and he's moved into this other place which doesn't feel congruent with what his experie... with his real 63 experience is. 64 65 H. So his lack of congruence and his the mask that he is putting on which seems so different from the 66 feelings that he is bringing forward that and the fact that he is taking up more than his share of time in 67 the group you find really irritating. How does this fit in with your idea of respect? 68 69 Helen: (big sigh) The place .. oh I feel like answering the question where does this bump up against 70 something in me. 71 72 H. Okay (Helen: um um ) go ahead. 73 74 Helen: Um I think it might have to do with attitudes I have myself about my irritation with it. 75 Right. That I have I have ah a judgment with my irritation, that I should not be feeling irritated. Like it 76 would be I should be noticing it and dealing with it but that it is my stuff if I'm feeling irritated with it 77 then I need to look at my irritation with it. (H. um several times throughout). Okay. So that's the part in 78 me that goes .... why are you irritated rather than just observing this because if you were to be tel - if 79 there were some other behaviour that were happening I might not feel irritated by it. Right. 80 81 H. Yah, maybe another behaviour that would interfere also with the group process (Helen: right) 82 wouldn't irritate you. 83 84 Helen: Right... right 85 86 H. So how does this irritation then um... how is that connected to respect or your ability to respect 87 this person. 88 89 Helen: I have to come up against the part of me that does not like men. Like certain characteristics that I 90 find men doing regularly. (H. um hum) Which has to do with issues around dominance and control and 91 (big sigh) um well mainly around issues of dominance and control and not being what I think 92 respectful of women where they're they're both kind of equal and exploring things right. Like where the 93 man has to go into a position of being sort of .. .of in a higher position than the women that are all there 94 or something like that,., right? how does tha..what does that have to do with respect. It's hard for me to 95 respect that because it pisses me right off, like it really,.. .as a feminist ... .1 I have a really hard time 96 being able to stay...maintain my neutrality towards this person, right. (H um um)'cause it really irritates 97 me. 98 99 H. So when you lose that kind of neutrality you also lose respect? 100 101 Helen: (pause) That's what I just said isn't it? Is... um. .um okay is where that leads into is the 102 whole thing about respect for me in an ultimate kind of way has to do with a total openness to the 103 person, right that um respect means seeing them in the highest way that you can right? Appreciating 104 them as a human being in their fullest as a human being,okay? And when I get irritated with something, 105 part of me shuts down from that, right? Like I ah., like I'm no longer open to them in the same kind of 106 106 way, right? So my openness is shut down (laugh) and I can't I can't see them in the same kind of 107 way. Because I have, my own defenses have gotten in the way of being of my openness. And for me 108 openness and respect are quite connected. Because openness has to do with being able /1 mean for my 109 own in Sufism and stuff like that ultimate openness had to do with receiving and acknowledging the 110 spirit in another person or their highest being or whatever so that when you bow to that person or 111 whatever that's what you are acknowledging . And you are in a very vulnerable place to do that. Like 112 you are wide open when you do that and they are wide open with you to and when I get irritated that 113 openness that I have gets shut down to some extent and it's ..I move back from that. I get into my own 114 judgments and then I have to figure it all out and make sense of it and say okay like this person is in 115 pain. I have to have (sigh) compassion for what is happening for them as a human being and then it is 116 possible for me to open a little bit to them but it is kinda like I get disappointed about something that 117 flies in my own values of.. .for what lets me stay open. Does that make sense. 118 119 H. Yah, I just like to ..um.xapsulate that so that um I can make sure that I am following you here. Um, 120 when you, ah when you have an experience with someone that breaks that openness, that sense of 121 openness we..um.. ah.. you have two processes that go on. One is to try and find compassion for that 122 person, to see where they might be in pain, .. but the other process is also to look within yourself to see 123 why that..why that is irritating you so much. (Helen: um hum) and to try and go into your own process 124 to ..do something about that 125 126 Helen: Right, and I don't do that at the time. Like I... I put a little flag on the experience and go - you 127 need to pay attention to this later. (H. um hum often here). But for right it would take me way too long 128 to process that. All I can do at this point is try and move into compassion about the behaviour rather 129 than judgment about it, right? Which is cuz the judgment about it is what, where I get shut down and 130 stop being open to them. 131 132 H. Yah, When you stay in compassion, then you are able to stay open to some extent, you are able to stay 133 open to the maximum extent that you can at that moment (Helen: right, right) in time and then later 134 you'll go back and look at it (Helen: right). And you were saying that respect to you was somehow 135 meeting the person at the highest possible level and um then you went on to talk about seeing the spirit 136 in the person and you mentioned Sufism and I am wondering if you could talk to me, explain to me 137 more about what that means to you - the highest level? 138 139 Helen: pause. It's really a hard thing to put words on to . Um 140 141 H. Can you, can you, think of an experience where you had that experience? 142 143 Helen: Where I think about, like the Samis, like, the dance of the whirling dervishes is kinda of a ..is a 144 meditation that's involved where that's what you are supposed to do, right? You sorta define the space 145 by walking around it three times. And the person who's officiating represents the line of transmission 146 for the Mahlevi Order sits on this red sheepskin and each time you cross the sheepskin you bow to the 147 person and you look at them in the third eye and um..acknowledge the divine in them right? I don't 148 know how to ..like the experience of doing that is quite profound, right? It's a profound...um ah.it's a 149 real opening, it feels kinda like your heart opens in a certain way. Heart opens, like III don't know how 150 to put words to it. um... long pause 151 152 H. So you have been able to have this kind of. this experience of respect in the Sufi ritual (Helen: Um) 153 154 Helen: Now the thing that is different in Sufism than in counselling and it took me quite a long time to 155 sort of come to terms with how this works is that in Sufism you kinda disappear and make total space for 156 the other person, and they are in a certain way are making total space for you and it is all happening on 157 kinda an inner spiritual plane right? Now that's not what is happening in counselling. And so, if I'm the 158 place of um totally receiving their spirit and that is not what is going on for them then it doesn't work 159 very well, right? So I need to be able to kinda move in and out of that which for me is what keeps me 160 totally open to them so I need to be able to move you know out of that also which is quite selfless place, 161 right? where your ego's not very involved in what is going on. But I need to bring all of my cognitive 107 162 processes and everything into a counselling session which I wouldn't do when I'm um You 163 know..um..doing the Mahlevi dance or whatever right. So it's really different kinda thing. So it's kinna 164 shifting back and forth. 165 166 H. So, in the counselling process then, um you're saying you have to shift back and forth and go in and 167 out of something.um..I understand the "in" being that you are able to look at the other person the way 168 you do in the ritual of the Sufi's (Helen: um um ) but I don't understand the out. Could you explain that. 169 170 171 Helen: Yah, well, the 'in' part it's almost like the ego and all of that other stuff is not what you are 172 looking at in the other person. You're, you're it's almost like everybody has a particular attribute and 173 you're seeing that person um...I don't know how to describe it Heather, it's um It is really hard to have 174 words for it. sigh pause ummmmm... .It's kinna it's sort of moving in and out of the difference 175 between deeply experiential in the way that you're relating to a person right, like where it's beyond 176 words and has nothing to do with thinking or with anything like that. (H. um... um... throughout) It's 177 just seeing the person and it is a deeply experiential kinda thing. So moving in and out of that which is 178 like kinna receiving their spirit or their being into more 'okay let's talk, right? 'um And for me there's 179 like physical things that go along with that. Like when I'm into really seeing them I kinda see light 180 around their head and other kind of things like that and then when I move out of that that's not what's 181 happening. It's kinda more grounded, down to earth, let's talk about what's happening in your life kinna 182 thing. Like what are you manifestations rather than your ultimate attributes right? Does that make 183 sense? 184 185 H. Yes. I understand what you are telling me that, that you see the person in in one sense 186 um.. .and..perhaps in a kind of in a total sense that doesn't have a lot of particulars on it. 187 188 Helen: It's kinda a transcendent kind of sense. (H. yah) 189 190 H. Kinda seeing the person more as a whole person and then when you want to um move in the 191 counselling session towards the practical um you look at some of the particular things so that you come 192 you move to the more holistic way of seeing things and start to focus on particular issues as though you 193 might look at a painting from many feet away and see the whole painting and then you can walk up and 194 just look at one part of the painting and examine how the artist did that particular part of the painting. 195 So you, Is that the kind of moving in and out? 196 197 Helen: Somewhat, somewhat. I should tell you..like Azima the name means the great one and its the 198 point between creation and manifestation. Right, so one has to do with kinda like the note for the person 199 or before manifestation right and then um as it comes filters down into the world its more okay. This is 200 this is a level of manifestation its kinna like subtler energies so its more seeing someone on a subtler 201 energy plane rather than um grosser energy plane. 202 203 H. I think I have some understanding of this from my own study in the Hindu tradition. And eh um 204 pause. I think um what I what I want to ask you now if it is all right I don't know whether you agree its 205 um how you see respect moving in those .. .ah ..in those two..but I know it's more than two places. 206 207 Helen: um um Well, The first place there is absolute respect, absolute respect and um the other is more 208 conditional or something or ummm. How do I see respect in the two? One is like absolute and totally 209 receiving the other person (sigh, laugh) and the other has potential for me to get into trouble right? um 210 211 H. The way you're talking about it -- you talk about going in and out. It sounds to me that it's very 212 chronologically linear that it is not possible to have the two states operating at the same time. 213 214 Helen: hummm pause Sometimes it is. Sometimes it is and I and I think that's part that's actually 215 an important thing like to find a way of having the two states operating at the same time. 216 108 217 H. So if you can think of a time when you really respected someone... other than a Sufi ritual, 218 (Helen: right, in a counselling situation?) No, not necessarily. It could be any time in your life. 219 220 Helen: pause.. .The thing that comes to mind is in another counselling session with a with a where this 221 man was talking about attitudes that were ultimately very altruistic. Right. They were. -And he was 222 being very humble about it. He was talking about helping this person who needed help in a really 223 simple kind of way and I could just feel how important compassion and you know somehow making the 224 world a better place and um caring for other people where it is not intrusive, where they won't know 225 about it and all those kind of things things that I value a lot right that where he was talking about them 226 and as he was speaking I could feel those two those two kinds of respect ultim - you know completely 227 linked up. He was talking in a way about the way he behaves in the world which is has ultimate 228 resonance with that ultimate respect for the being of a person. Right. So that was an example where 229 both..uh you know I could stay quite connected the..you know the physical material earthly plane of 230 what was happening and what I think of as a more kinda transcendent pla - respect, right so that they 231 were very connected in that in that situation. And what was happening is that um is that things that I 232 associate with spiritual values is what he was talking about right (laugh). 233 234 H. So when you agree with somebody else's values you can align these two places. The 'in' and the 'out' 23 5 place can be aligned and have a common thread. But with this man you were telling me about at the 236 beginning of the interview he has different values than yours and you can't align and you struggle to see 237 him on a spiritual level so you can have compassion. 238 239 Helen: Well, that's interesting. I don't know I would say say its different values um like I think that his 240 behaviour is not based on his value system. I think it was based more on his pain than on his value 241 system.Ummm (H. okay) The time that is not related so much to male female power balance kinds 242 of issues had to do with seeing a client who was Muslim. And she was talking about um having a curse 243 put on her. That this other family had put a curse on her. And her values in terms of women's place in 244 the family and powerlessness and class things and all that kinda stuff were completely different than my 245 world view about the way things work right? Now um .. the frustration in that was not so much whether 246 she agreed with my values or not but about whether there would even be a language to talk about other 247 possibilities. Right. Whether there would even be a context for her to be able to imagine other .. another 248 way that the world could be. So um did my values not agree with hers. Is it a value or a world view? 249 Like what are values? That it's good to be a decent human.I don't know. I'm getting .I'm getting 250 tripped up in the words. 251 252 H. In the word value. (Helen: um um) I'm using that word to try to understand the framework behind 253 how you view respect, what you consider respectful. So the word values doesn't fit we can eliminate that 254 word. I want to know what framework that you have that you are working from for respect. 255 256 Helen: And I think .... respecting another person has to do with being able to stay totally open to them. 257 and what they are saying to you rather than being defensive in any way. There's like an element of 258 openness and non defensiveness. 259 260 H. When you spoke about the man who talked about who was altruistic you used the word values. You 261 said "I had the same values, I had the same spiritual values as he did." And then I asked you to compare 262 that to the man who was trying to control the group and I used the word values there and you made a 263 really interesting point. You said you didn't think it was because of his values but because of his pain. 264 But that's a thought. I'm wondering if you can go into your feelings around that and tell me some of 265 your actual experience. 266 267 Helen: My experience um (H. comparing those two. Moving from one situation to the other and see..Tell 268 me a little bit about what the difference is in the experience of the two.) 269 270 Helen: Well its difficult because one is an individual counselling session where the guy has tons of. you 271 know where he can take as much space as he needs to and its not interfer - I don't have to be worrying 272 about group process in any way so they were very different in that way. 109 273 274 H. The context was really different. 275 276 Helen: So the process about being open.. 277 278 H. I'm wondering about your inner experience though. (Helen: um...) your inner experience of ability or 279 ..of respect (Helen: um um um ) Is it context bound? 280 281 Helen: hum..It is only context bound in as much as there are different responsibilities in different 282 contexts. Right like I start worrying about the other group members um and what their experience is and 283 what my responsibility as a group facilitator to keep it all on track. Right 284 285 H. And that affects your ability to respect some individual. 286 287 Helen: It's one of the things where my irritation kinna gets in the way, or enters into it right cause I start 288 to worry about where we have to go and when I start worrying or getting anxious It is hard to just sort 289 of stay in the moment with what this person is talking about and what's going on for them. I don't know 290 Heather this is ah I'm getting kinda wordy and out of the experience of it. pause... .um one of the parts 291 of the experience is that I move out of. I move into my head right when things are starting to get tricky 292 or more difficult. ... (interruption, one minute) Um so its so interesting to talk about this stuff and to try 293 and put words on it. yah so my experience with him was um .. .he's talking and I'm looking at him 294 going oh my god who's talking like what is going on here like this is so different that what he was doing 295 before so there is a part of me that going surprised that's feeling surprised .. and I'm, feeling.yah very 296 surprised and also aware that he is flirting with one of the other women in the group right and and so 297 I'm surprised and there is one part of me that wants to laugh at that piece at the whole male preening 298 part of it. Um and there's a part of me that is starting to feel irritated about that this is about male 299 domination and ah and power and control stuff and cut this shit out right like stop doing that.. .gets you 300 know he came into the session talking about how a psychiatrist he has been to saw him and um I don't 301 know. If I'm not saying his name is this okay in terms of confidentiality to be saying anything at all 302 about it. I guess I don't need to talk about what he had been saying but right okay forget that sorry. Um 303 but I was just aware of the incongruence between what he had been saying earlier and what he was 304 presenting okay so. So there's surprise, there's um kinna amusement. There's irritation. I was feeling 305 irritated with him.. .um I started to get anxious about how this was going to affect the rest of the group. I 306 started to get anxious about how I was going to bring this in because I was irritated and I when I am 307 irritated I know that I have to work at putting this out in a way that's not that doesn't have any kind of a 308 charge on it. right that's ..urn Where it is quite comfortable for the other person. 309 310 H. When you talk about you want to put it out without a charge on it what are you struggling to attain. 311 312 Helen: um ..pause I mea...Well clarity, like I'm I'm struggling t.... when I say that I don't want to 313 put a charge on it what am I trying to attain? um 314 315 H. Can I just clarify my question a minute, .um presumably you are wanting to be responsible to the 316 group. I want it particularly in light of that man. What are you trying to attain not with the rest of the 317 group but with that man? 318 319 Helen: um (H.because when you) (Helen: okay I'm trying)( H. When I'm hearing you say I want to put it 320 out without a charge it seems to me the only possible charge would go towards him anyway.)( Helen: um 321 hum.)( H. So I'm wondering what it is you are trying to attain?) 322 323 Helen: Honesty um openness and vulnerability about what his experience is . I I'm I'm wanting him (H. 324 But what is your experience What are you trying to attain inside you. )(Helen: Inside myself?)( H. 325 Yes)(Helen: um )(H. If you are able to put it out without a charge what is it that you have.) 326 327 Helen: Okay neutrality. That's where. Do I have respect is kinda the question are you asking me if I 328 have respect in that is that what. (H. That would be a possible answer.)( Helen: yah) 110 329 330 Helen: um I would say neutrality H. neutrality 331 332 H. Can you tell me what neutrality means to you. 333 334 Helen: Non-defensiveness, sort of clear observation, without judgement,., it's it's interesting. Like I 335 suppose in some ways I am making a dichotomy that's saying that respect is um is um is a more 336 spiritual quality. That respect is ultimate openness to another human being and this openness is more 337 kinna based in the here and now and you know it is less transcendent in nature right. 338 339 H. What makes it less transcendent. This is where I'm struggling to understand you. (Helen: yah, yah, 340 )H. If you tell me it's neutral you say that the neutrality...( Helen: Okay I'll tell you what makes)H. 341 (louder) You see the other person honestly right (Helen: yah yah )H. So for me if I see someone honestly 342 it also means the same that I am open to seeing that person and that sounds a lot like what you were 343 describing before in the spiritual sense. (Helen: um hum) H. Maybe you could make a distinction there. 344 345 Helen: The only distinction has to do with there is a certain quality of love that comes in the spiritual 346 part of it like the spiritual piece of it um ... there's a different there's um ...pause...there's an openness 347 of heart that I would put the word love on. right. Where 348 349 H. Is that required for you with respect? 350 351 Helen: pause... I think for me for the highest level of respect it is, yah. 352 3 53 H. At the very apex of respect it comes together and there is no difference. 3 54 Helen: um hum 355 H. But as you come out into the world... 356 Helen: um hum then it's sort of neutrality is the lowest er I wouldn't say the lowest but within the realm 357 of respect from the transcendent to the more grounded in the world. 358 359 H. So you have a sort of sliding experience of respect from being neutral to um ... 360 361 Helen: Being neutral which is being open and non-judgmental right and accepting of what is happening 362 to that person. Like neutral sort of sounds like there's um... like non,.. like acceptance and non-363 judgment is what I mean by neutral right. And and there is a level of openness on that and as it becomes 364 more transcendent there's greater sense of love involved in it too. yah. or awe . Maybe awe is even a 365 better word that love yah, it's like sort of a combination of those two. For me it has more..I can feel it as 366 a quality inside myself when I say them and it's hard to put words to it right. It's like that there's like it 367 feels like an openness in your heart. Does does that make sense? 368 369 H. Yes, if does. It makes a lot of sense to me. I underst.. .1 think I understand you very clearly. (Long 370 pause). Yah that's good. I l l 1 Transcript # 2, Jack: 2 3 H: ... You talked about respecting people separate from their behaviour um that and that you can't work 4 with someone unless they have some sense of caring and some idea about progressing in therapy but 5 even if they don't do that is there a place where you can ah at that distance where you have withdrawn 6 yourself and that you can have kind of respect for someone under those circumstances. 7 8 Jack: ... pause well I don't know. I'm tempted to say no... ah... (H: um hum) um... and the reason that I 9 am just tempted to say not is that I have other patients. You know I have pressing tasks to complete with 10 other patients. And um and a - certainly when I was at RPC there was a lineup outside my door so if I 11 felt that if I had no more time for Larry, he's he's he's not doing anything I'm particularly interested in 12 in in facilitating or encouraging which is something you have to think about too that if you're you 13 know if you're engaged in therapy with somebody and he or she is not um you know is not engaged in 14 the process in any real way is there for secondary gains, has little or no feeling for other people, um then 15 what is the outcome of your caring and respect for this person. You may in fact be encouraging this kind 16 of behaviour and attitudes to go on. 17 18 H: Oh ah ... a... a... My question was that even though you tell that person that you are not going to work 19 with them right now and they go away so that you know that you have satisfied your needs or 20 requirements for being in the therapeutic situation and they go away, you don't do therapy with them but 21 as you think of that person or as you might run into them somewhere else is there any way that in that in 22 that situation you still have or any kind of respect or ... 23 24 Jack: When I think about the extreme examples I would I would say no, that I don't. Cause they.. .It's 25 like having respect for a shark. Aum I have respect for the shark to the extent that ah it could hurt me 26 badly, and ah it could hurt other living things ah so I have a certain amount of respect in that sense 27 (interruption) 28 29 um what was I saying, oh yah well it's like I said like I said I began to see the potential for human 30 destructiveness in different in a different light ah they weren't all poor, unfortunate, damaged, ah 31 abused, ah improperly brought up people. I mean that those things might have contributed to the 32 package but you end up with an individual who is just entirely self-serving aum, commitments mean 33 nothing, only that they serve a purpose today ah and they're just constantly just going around just 34 satisfying their own needs. And um you know I don't know I I don't have much respect for that. 35 36 H: No I can see that you wouldn't respect that behaviour or that attitude but I'm wondering that on 3 7 another level there's still... 38 39 Jack: I don't know. I don't know. I mean I have had patients who's you know their behaviour's terrible, 40 their attitude's are terrible um you wouldn't want them in the same room with you I don't think or at 41 least for a very short period of time - um and yet there is some effort on their part to change, to get 42 better. There's some feelings for being sorry for what they have done. There's some sense of taking 43 responsibility for their actions that that to me adds up to a patient, a person that I want to work with. 44 That I see that well you know there is a part of this person who is observing, who has a some moral 45 sense ah that is aware of their own destructiveness and their own ... their own... need to act out and to 46 create these horrible events and but there is a part of the personality that its your - its capable its possible 47 that you can have a therapeutic with this part of the individual and you feel that there is some possibility 48 to change these this structure. Whereas with others, you feel that this is not the case. And I .. I think 49 that ah I mean that I ... I first of all have to be concerned about well, what is best for the patient. And 50 equally important is what is going to be really detrimental to me as a therapist because I have other 51 patients that are relying on me. I :.. I have to come back to work next week. I have to go on and be a 52 therapist and if if you engage some of these individuals in therapy you're gonna find out that pretty soon 53 you are feeling pretty inept you're feeling that your tools are not very useful and you are beginning to 54 wonder about the entire concept of therapy anyway. That it can be a very toxic element to come into 55 therapy. And 11 feel all right about this because I've done what I think to be pretty good therapy with 56 people.. .1 might not particularly like them I certainly don't like the things that they've done but there is 112 57 a moral conscious ... conscience there. There's a sense of responsibility and I'm able to separate the 58 behaviour and the crimes, kinda put those aside and deal with this person as an individual. 59 60 H: When you talked earlier about not wanting to work with sexual offenders at the beginning um I'd like 61 you to tell me a bit about your process and how you um and how that played itself out for you. 62 63 Jack: hum, Well I guess it was just exposure, you know um.. .you know the word sex offender is so 64 loaded it is like right up there with cannibal or something. That it's it's such a loaded word and of 65 course it brings to mind the worst possible things. And I guess it brings to mind the kind of person that 66 I'm describing that I have been describing as being unfit for therapy and respect from my point of view. 67 The psychopathic need satisfying, desire satisfying, aggressive um amoral irresponsible individual. And 68 then as I began to meet sex offenders I began to see that they were not all fitting this mold. That there 69 were a lot of different people that were categorized as sex offenders and some of them I began to see that 70 I could I could work with them. And I could 11 think working originally with people who had murdered 71 others I from that approach I began to be able to separate the crime that I do not have empathy for from 72 the person that I do have empathy for. And by being able to do that with murderers I found it wasn't all 73 that difficult for me to make the move to do that with sex offenders. And also I guess I'm basically 74 saying you know, with exposure I began to see the different people, began to differentiate between 75 different individuals and not just lump them all into the same bag. 76 77 H: You sort of broke down a stereotype you had. 78 79 Jack: I broke down a stereotype that I had and I also you know, as a therapist we get better and better I 80 think we should get better and better at being very dynamic and flexible in our ability to form gestalts. 81 That someone can be crying beside us as we are conducting therapy and as we're handling handing 82 them the Kleenex or patting them on the back ah or or being there for them we can also separate out a 83 little bit and look at this exchange and and analyze at the same time almost be shifting in our view of 84 this. And I guess I began to be better able at being able to differentiate better able to for different gestalts 85 with the patient. And I think also initially I was not sure what my own reactions would be. That 86 someone had you know someone had ah we'll just leave it that they've done very horrible but horrible in 87 a sexual nature and ah I wasn't sure how I would be able to handle that. And I guess I just got gradual 88 exposure and over time I got a little more comfortable with dealing with these issues. I became a little 89 more at ease talking about sexual perversions, fixations, fetishes and so on. That had initially I didn't 90 know how I would deal with that. Um 91 92 H: Is there any internal process that took place during that time? Could you tell me a little about that? 93 94 Jack: um sigh... .H: What was changing for you? Inside. Jack: Well, I mean I I think I'd be I perhaps 95 became a little less judgmental. And 11 suppose I you know what I just said probably illuminates the 96 process that I went through to become a little less judgmental. I I think I was pretty flexible and not 97 highly judgmental when I got into the field but it is easy to one say thing you can do is that you're not 98 judgmental but you you do maintain a couple of pariahs as convenient scapegoats. And I suppose sex 99 offenders ah represented that to me. That I work with all sorts of different people in the first couple of 100 years but I didn't work with a sex offender. 101 Um 102 H: Well. I think that pretty well covers it. If you feel as though you have covered everything in that area. 103 104 Jack: Right now yes I do. Imean something else might come to me later um 11 think one thing too is 105 you know the respect that you the respect that you receive from the patient I think that can be a 106 mechanism that comes into play. That we can have respect for people that have respect for us. But you 107 know the reason I wanted to go down a notch, you know down to empathy and remorse and a sense of 108 responsibility and psychopathy ah is that even that respect can be an illusion. You know some 109 psychopaths are very, very adept and ah they're like sharks. That ah I mean if they have a reasonable 110 amount of intelligence and if one is focused on very single-mindedly focus I mean you can be quite 111 capable, quite talented at ingratiating yourself at charming people and so on and ah I mean there is some 112 literature about psychopaths and their ability, the intelligent ones, to be charming and to be kinda likable ' ' 113 113 people at first. And so respect can be um can be a lever that they use to gain access and um there 114 were there were instances that were more obvious there were instances someone was almost fawning in 115 their respect towards me. We..., that would kinda trigger off a bit of an alarm in my head you know. 116 Well, what's going on here. Why is this person treating me ... I hardly know the guy... he's treating me 117 like the big guru or something. Um at other time it can be more subtle. It's part of the sales pitch. I think 118 it may be, you know, I certainly this idea of respect is ah is ah probably um in a way its informed a little 119 differently because of my background in this correctional setting where you have, you know, you have a 120 certain amount of pressure on people to get treatment. If they wanna to get out they're going to have to 121 get some damn treatment. Ah if they want a parole they're gonna need some good reports ah so the 122 possibility of people malingering cr people presenting false symptoms or people you know, ah wanting 123 to use this therapy for some other purpose I think it's more common feature of patient therapist 124 interactions in that setting than you would probably have anywhere else. So the possibilities of having 125 your empathy your um therapeutic relationship and your frame manipulated and destroyed by devious 126 patients is much higher there. I mean that is probably one of the things that leads to so much burn out in 127 that working location is that it's ah you you I think one of the things you must do is you must be capable 128 of saying "You come in, You go out" I mean you have to be capable of doing that otherwise you are just 129 going to run into the rocks pretty soon. 130 131 H: yah. How would you define respect? 132 133 M Well, I think there's a lot of different ways to defining respect. And I I the take I've been ah ah The 134 way I've been doing it with you in talking about respect in therapy has been to kinda focus on empathy -135 can I have empathy for this person? Or is my empathy somehow it's not working. Or somehow I don't 136 have it. Well, why don't I have it? Well, ah well then that may say something about my respect for that 137 person and that person's respect of therapy. But 138 139 H: Are vou, are you making empathy and respect synonymous? 140 141 Jack: Not entirely but ah pretty close, pretty close. 142 143 H: Where do they differ? 144 145 Jack: Ah 11 guess they differ in the fact that I respect that person's process. There's a part of that person 146 that I will never know. There's a part of ah the, just to use this the art symbol as an analogy is useful. 147 That the art symbol is not a sign. It doesn't mean one thing, it means a lot of things. In fact I often talk 148 about a circle of meaning and therefore you can have things which are almost opposite in the meaning of 149 that symbol. Um that I would wanna respect that person's um the integrity of that symbol without 150 intruding in the process and without needing to intrude and my need to know before this session is over 151 I need to know what this symbol means. Well, that's my problem. That's not their problem. So I would 152 want to respect their process. And their relationship to this symbol and allow that to grow on it's own. 153 Um like a plant. If I had no respect for the plant I suppose. I'd be constantly giving it plant food and 154 putting it in the sun and I would probably kiss the thing. Rather than just lettin' it grow. And I guess to 155 some extent I wanna let it grow. One of the things that has really come home again after um my 156 experiences of last week of doing the workshop in Surrey and doing the ah lecture in Gastown is the 157 propensity of people to project like mad onto other people's art work. That ah the simplest, the simplest 158 example was on Thursday (part not transcribed describing what happened at the workshop) ... We 159 sort of respect as therapists. We have a positive regard towards that person's process in art therapy or in 160 therapy of any kind. The - they are capable of finding out things for themselves, of understanding, of 161 insight that we don't have to be cramming these insights into them. Ah That we can allow them and 162 should allow them to move in a natural flow through these insights themselves. And a good 163 interpretation is one that the patient is perfectly ready to receive. That's the that's the right 164 interpretation. And a premature one is just jumpin' all over the place trying to be a brilliant therapist, 165 tryna get that person moving. And ah that shows a lack of respect towards their own capabilities and 166 their own autonomy. And ah 11 think it helps in a way to have that metaphor of the art image because 167 what people do to the art image is like a little microcosm of what they do interpersonally quite 168 often...and um I think you have to let things move. I said this too. I don't come to therapy with an 114 169 agenda. I don't come with like a check list. I gotta move this person through the six stages of 170 mourning or something. Yah, okay they're there and they are definitely worth checking out, ah just like 171 Eriksonian stages of development of the child or archetypes of Jung or complexes of Freud. They're all 172 useful tools to apply in a given situation if it seems to hold water. But um but it's it's a organic dialogue 173 in a way and 11 think it works best'when you respect the process and when you when you have the when 174 you have the ah ... sense of security and confidence not to need to interpose onto that person. 175 176 H: Is respecting the process and respecting the person the same thing? 177 178 Jack: In therapy ummmmmmmmmm... I would say yes. They are very, very close. In therapy I would 179 think so. That um .. .I'm .. .I'm tryna think of examples where one wouldn't where one would be at 180 work and the other one wouldn't. Um.. .pause... .Well, okay. Let's for example look at a patient that is 181 very low functioning. And ah their capacity for insight and so on may not be that great. Um And so we 182 may be called upon to lead them a little more. We may be called upon to take more of an active role in 183 therapy. And so the process is a little different. But we still have a baseline of respect for that person that 184 they wanna change. That they're working in their reduced way to change. And ah and and part of that 185 part of that relationship is based on respecting that the person is sincere and ah engaged in a in a 186 process of change even though the process is on a lower level, pause 187 188 H: You still have respect for that person. The way you respond to them depends on what their reality is. 189 190 Jack: On what their reality is. Yah (H: on what their reality is.) Jack: Yah on what their reality is in 191 terms of yes, yes. I mean there are and its also based on my assessment of their functioning and my 192 observations of which is the most appropriate process to go through. 193 194 H: When you look at another person and try to see the world from their perspective in order to make 195 these decisions - is that part of the experience of respect for you? 196 197 Jack: Yah, Yah, I guess it is. I'd never really thought about it in those terms before but yah. I guess that 198 II have enough I have enough confidence in that person's commitment and in their observ... in the 199 mature part of them in their moral sense that ah that I am still able to work with them. I think that now 200 sometimes you run into people that are just very defensive. They're very defensive, and you may, in my 201 in my in my view one of the first things that you have to do is assess the person's defensiveness. Um and 202 see what are the defense mechanisms that are called upon, that they call upon. And ah see if there if 203 there is some possibility for moving there, possibility for moving forward. Um but if the resistance 204 doesn't change, if the defensiveness remains rigid in the same way I mean 11 would probably say -205 "Why are you here for therapy?" Um and then you may find out that they are there for a whole different 206 reason. They're there because their wife wants them to be there or they're there because somebody told 207 them that they should be there. And ah 11 might not it's not going to do a lot for my respect for that 208 person. I guess I tend to respect people who are willing to be self aware. Who are willing to look at 209 themselves. If you come across somebody who is really not willing to do that, it's it's difficult to have 210 respect for those people. Ah because everything everything's always happening to them. And they're just 211 you know the poor they're the victim and aaa there's always these malevolent forces around them in 212 their lives but it is not their fault. And I think that after a bit of that you begin - for people who are not 213 they're not taking responsibility for they're for themselves. They're not willing to be really open and 214 look at things and 11 find it hard to have respect for people like that. Even if they're not particularly sick 215 , or not particularly destructive I just don't have much respect for that. And ah 216 ' 217 H: That's having respect for something that you value. You value people taking responsibility for 218 themselves and having the ability to look at the consequences of their actions. And that for you is sort of 219 synonymous of your experience of respecting others? 220 221 Jack: Yah it is, it is. Ya know they are portraying themselves to be less than entirely autonomous. They 222 gee they don't have they don't have independence, they don't have autonomy. Things are always 223 happening to them and they are cast upon the waves of malevolent fate. Um that's too bad and you can 224 try, one would try perhaps as a therapist to see if you can work beyond that a bit but if you are just 115 225 constantly running into rock hard denial and resistance you are beating your head against the wall. 226 Um Um... .mmm.. .1 don't know , I feel like there is something I am not quite getting at. pause... .1 mean 227 if somebody, if somebody comes to me in the prison. And says "Hi how're ya doing . I'm not interested 228 in doin' art therapy. Ah I'm here for this reason. Ah I'm I'm a life long criminal. This is what I do. I 229 don't wan' any therapy. Ah you know what I do is rob banks or I embezzle financial institutions or 230 whatever and that's what I do. Ah in a way I have a certain amount of respect for that. That it's ya 231 know. I have made my choice. I'm commited to this life style. Ah I'm not involved in hurting people 232 particularly. Ahum well, okay. Adios. More power to you. We..., maybe not more power to you but 233 adios. Good luck. And I hope it all doesn't blow up in your face at some point in time or you don't 234 inadvertantly hurt somebody. But you know there are people like that that. And for example like a 235 political criminal. They've hurt people whatever ah...I don't know, I guess I draw the line at that too. If 236 you're going around ah letting off bombs and blowing up innocent people and ah somehow you are 237 justifying this as some kind of Jahad or something, I don't have a lot of respect for that either. Ah and I 238 guess there it's a I guess again it's it's sort of feeling that people have that comes across sometimes 239 that's they self rightousness. Like for example the guy who picked up a girl because he didn't want a 240 creep to pick her up. Ah there was a feeling of self rightousness about it it was it was ludicrous 241 considering what actually you know what later transpired. Aum ... I mean we may be fairly certain of 242 our values and fairly certain of what we deem to be worthy and unworthy but we're probably pretty open 243 to examining that to shifting our gestalts around. But if you run into somebody who is one track Mr. 244 mono gestalt - "I'm on a Jahad here." or "All my children are my possessions and I can screw them if I 245 so chose and it's none of the government's business." Aum that's pretty tough. That's pretty tough to 246 have a lot of respect for that or any of it. 247 248 H: No, No. I would agree that you can't respect the actions. 249 250 Jack: I also find it very, very difficult to even respect the individual because the individual is committed 251 to their actions they're almost - you know in these other instances that I'm talking about you can 252 separate the crime from the person. You can do that because they're not entirely united with that 253 themselves. But where you find a person who is united with that then you know if you separate that in 254 your mind then you are only playing kinda a mind game with yourself. But that's not the reality of the 255 situation. They are one with what they have done. And ah 11 think it's it's you know to say that ah for 256 me to somehow to be able to say, I don't respect I mean I don't respect your crime anyway but 11 don't I 257 don't respect your behaviour and your attitude but somehow there's a part of you I must respect or I feel 258 I have some respect for that, I can't really get into that. I can't get my head around that entirely. 11 just 259 can't do that. 11 - Like for Clifford Olsen for example, a good example. I have no respect for Clifford 260 Olsen. I'm sorry, I just don't, aum And I and I guess this again it's it's not the self righteousness it's 261 this unity of their actions and who they are that they're unable to separate out. So where do you form a 262 therapeutic alliance with that personality. There's nowhere you can form a you know. 263 264 H: I can see that you wouldn't be able to form a therapeutic alliance but like as the person not in therapy 265 you still still can't make that (Jack: well, well) 266 267 Jack: I don't particularly want to see people mistreated, aum I guess in a way, this is informative for me, 268 that 11 have a funny political view of it and I think my political view is a reflection of this business this 269 differentiating and categorizing - okay these guys I want nothing to do with and these guys I'll work 270 with intensely and when I work I work very hard and III was known as somebody there who cared. 271 Somebody you could go and talk to. Somebody whose not going to preach to you. Somebody whose 272 tolerant of different attitudes and so on. That I had a reputation as this. And I think one of the ways I 273 was able to do it like I said III saved I saved paying anything into those accounts so then I had more to 274 pay in these accounts in a way. That I had more empathy to put into this therapeutic relationship 275 because I didn't waste any (H: um hum) in that therapeutic relationship which would have just been a 276 bottomless pit. And I guess you know I don't really believe it but I sometimes I say we should have 277 capital punishment again. And yet I'm not a big supporter of capitol punishment in any real way and I 278 know that it's very destructive and very difficult thing to administer and have as a reality. But I have 279 this little fantasy that I toss around every little once in a while that in Canada we should have like a pet 280 grizzly bear (continues with this story not transcribed... that if we threw a heinous criminal to the 116 281 grizzly bear each year viewed on TV then people would be more tolerant to the ones who could be 282 rehabilitated and the public death would assuage the anger of the people) 283 284 Jack: In the same way I think by by cutting my losses in losing therapeutic relationships I was able to put 285 more into the ones that work. And that was a very important thing to be able to do. And and what 286 protected me was almost putting those people, really it was, I would put those people out of my mind. 287 Here today, gone tomorrow. That ah you know I've got somebody in my room right now. They need all 288 my therapy skills and all my attention right now. And ah 289 290 H: And your decision on how to do that was based on your ability to respect the person? I don't know if 291 that ties in. 292 293 Jack: ahhh. 11 you see I wouldn't use that paradigm because in a way it it it opens it up to a more of a 294 value judgment on my part when really I think it was more based on a clinical perspective. It's based 295 more on observation, on assessing and maybe even giving the therapy a try for a while and seeing if 296 there is any movement here. ... um So to say that that was based on my respect for those people um it 297 that word respect begins to be a bit of a red herring. It begins to not inform (H: yep) but to mystify a bit. 298 That you know there were people that I didn't see in therapy that I had some respect for. Ah for 299 example, the head of the inmate committee, this is a guy who shot a couple of people in an armed 300 robbery, he was doing heroin all the time, he was doing a program there but you know he was doing a 301 program so he could have a shot at parole at some point but he is not particularly committed to changing 302 his life style. I would not have seen him one to one in therapy. He was the president of the inmate 303 committee. One day on a Friday afternoon after a particularly long and hectic week, ah it's five o'clock 304 and I really wanna leave. I wanna get out of there. And I'm packing up, checking everything out and 305 I'm locking up and I notice my big scissors are missing, my 12 inch scissors which would make two 306 beautiful weapons. And I cannot leave obviously, I cannot leave the penitentiary until these scissors are 307 accounted for. I had I had a hundred people in my room that day. But I did know a couple of guys that 308 had the scissors, that had been using them and I called them down to the office and I also called this guy 309 Jerry who was the president of the inmate down. And I said well this is the situation: I got about 10 310 minutes and then I must inform security or it's gonna look real bad on me. So I've got 10 minutes to get 311 these scissors back or you're probably all be locked down for the night and they will search the whole 312 penitentiary, you'll all be confined to your cells. There'll be no there'll be no basketball games, there'll 313 be not movies there'll be nothing. And ah they said they'll go, we'll see what we can do and we'll be 314 right back. So they come back and this guy Jerry says "Let me go look in your look in your cupboard 315 here lemme go look in your cupboard." I said I already looked in there. "Well, let me check it out." He 316 goes there and he comes back with the scissors. ... I said thanks very much. And I locked up and I went 317 home. To some extent I had a certain amount of respect for that guy. I guess going back to being 318 whatever, a standup guy to some extent - a guy with some clout, that I had respect for him. I had 319 patients who _ I think it's better if I just tell it like it is - the guy was like an abused child, he was still 320 really just a child about 19 or 20 years old. Sort of a passive overly stimulated sexually as a child and 321 and a passive homosexual and um um well there's more that one example there of those kinda guys but 322 but ah a guy who was just really just what a ... like a jungle boy or something. And dirty and ah terrible 323 And he used to go around and find tampons in the garbage, staff lounge or something - women's 324 washroom. And he'd walk around with these tampons on under his clothes. ... And I worked with this 325 guy who most people didn't want to have anything to do with him. And I didn't wanna have too much to 326 do with him. I didn't want him touching me. But I worked with him. And to say but to say that I had 327 respect for him is stretching it in a way. That 11 mean I had a appreciation of how damaged he's been. I 328 had an appreciation that a lot of these outrageous behaviours that he engaged in, were um the result of 329 him being traumatized and victimized as a child. And it was ... there was from time to time an interest 330 in getting better. But you know I wouldn't really, I wouldn't really say that I respected him. .. .pause 331 332 H: But when you were working with him you would have respected his process? 333 334 Jack: Yes, Yah H: um hum 335 336 H: And his right to autonomy? 117 337 338 Jack: Right, right. And that would stretch so far as to intervene in a group situation when he's getting 339 somebody else to draw the picture for him. Or asking somebody else what he should put into his picture. 340 There I there I'm going to jump in because he's not respecting the process and he is encouraging the 341 other person not to respect the process too. But ah... yah I mean I think ... that just my take on this 342 Heather is that when you're doing this, this r e s p e c t probably needs to be defined in a number of 343 ways as you go through this and to tease out certain aspects of the word. 344 345 H: Well, this is what (Jack: What you're in the process of doing.) H: yah 346 347 Jack: That in some ways, in some ways its informative but because of the various meanings of the word 348 that in some ways it's not. And ah ... I'm glad here, I'm glad that at this point that we touched on this 349 idea that yes, I have seen people in therapy and worked with them fairly intensely, that I maybe didn't 350 have very much respect for them aum but I did have a empathy for them. And I did have a certain 351 amount of respect that they were trying at least some of the time, to change, to be better people. And that 352 they were that they had some respect for art therapy and me. Um and then there were like I said, there 353 were people that I puuuf There is no particular point in seeing Jerry in therapy. But I have a certain 354 amount of respect for Jerry. 355 pause 356 H: Well, one of the definitions of respect um is to respect someone um when they had attributes that you 357 value but. And there's also another one that so that means that you have something in common and you 358 like that thing that you have in common. 359 360 Jack: um hum Like being a standup guy? 361 362 H: yah. But um and you talked, you talked about that. And then there's another connotation on the word 363 that says um to like sped means to see and respect means to look again and to - The first time you look 364 you look from your own perspective and your own value system. And the second time you look, the 365 respect part, you look from the other person's context and there system. And you have also talked about 366 that. Jack: um hum. And um um you're quite clear about where they separate and what makes um makes 367 it possible for you to respect in that sense - to look again from their context, yah. I think that has come 368 out quite clearly in the interview. I just want to ask you a couple of nuts and bolts questions. Could you 369 tell me what RPC stands for? 370 371 Jack: It is the Regional Psychiatric Center. And ah they have changed their name now. It is called the 372 regional health center. There's 5 regions in Canada according to the correctional service parts not 3 73 transcribed. 118 1 Transcript #3 Mary 2 3 H: I don't have any sort of set questions. (Mary: okay) It's not like going through a set sort of thing. Um 4 I have this one - I'm not sure how much that it's going to to be able to pick up my voice so I have this 5 one so that if I can't hear my voice, though its usually pretty loud. And if I jot down any notes here it's 6 mostly for my - so that I can try and remember something that you've said to ask you later (Mary: okay). 7 8 ... .(untranscribed talk about tapes changes and possible phone calls as interruptions) 9 10 H: Okay, Well I'm a little nervous about this too (Mary: laugh) 11 12 Mary: Well, this is your first one, so - is it? 13 14 H: Well, I've done two pilots and had feedback on the kinds of questions I should be asking to get the 15 kind of information. And the kind of information I am really wanting to get is ... um I'm wanting to 16 know about your experience of your inner experience of respect and in order to understand what that 17 means to someone I thought it would be a good idea to look at times in their lives where they have 18 wanted to be respectful to someone and were not able at the beginning to be respectful to the standard at 19 which they wanted to be able to do that, for some reason and to look at - for you to be able to tell me 20 exactly what your experience was that you - as you went through that experience - what happened - what 21 your actual experience was rather than your ideas about it. 22 23 Mary: Pause. So what you're asking me to do is recall um an instance then when um... Now are you 24 talking about a counselling session or are you talking about (H: I could be ) in general. 25 26 H: It could be anything. Just one - whatever experience for you that would be one that you had 27 awareness of and were conscious of working through. It doesn't have to be a counselling experience. It 28 could be any kind of experience where you were struggling with yourself to be respectful - there was 29 some.... The object of that is to ... to find some parameters to see ~ what exactly is respect all about. 30 And when you agree, when everything agrees and the person is um has attributes that we honour, that 31 we like and that we value it doesn't really tell us very much because it is hard to say whether we are 32 really respecting that person or whether we are just agreeing with them. 33 34 Mary:umm .. It's interesting because when I think of of situations or persons um I don't have as much 3 5 difficulty with that when I'm doing counselling or spiritual direction, um At least I'm not aware of it as 36 much as I do on some other personal kinds of situations. Um It's interesting. I'm just wondering what 37 the difference is. (laugh), um 38 39 H: Would you want to elaborate on that. (Mary: I'm just thinking about that) 40 41 Mary: um ... Yah that's interesting. Because in the counselling setting or spiritual direction I guess I'm 42 seeing the person as ah or wanting to be present to the person ah as unique, as searching, as wanting to 43 grow or to to at least sort through and experience to become more free. Um and and I don't want to 44 jeopardize that in any way. So, um ... there's a kind of delicacy or or a that's a kind of well that's a 45 sacredness that's there, ah And um ... I only want what makes that person move along like sometimes it 46 can get you know a bit confrontative or whatever but um it's still with that in the background, um 47 and not wanting to impose my own views or my own position. So it's largely trying to help that person 48 explore what's going on within themselves and move out beyond that in whatever way they are able to 49 do the - But in in ah other situations I still want to operate from there. 50 51 H: Just before you move into another situation can you just think of one example in a counselling 52 situation so that we can just... (D, umm) It doesn't have to be anything in particular... any any example 53 so that you could. (Mary: yah ah ) 54 55 Mary: Gosh there are so so many ... I'm just ah ah I suppose a more immediate one would 56 probably be better. ... I'm you know just recently aware of um seeing a person for the first time and ah 119 57 and ah ... real - you know that two of us coming to a point where ah she was saying well, ah Well, 58 you know, I need to let go and I'm ah ... ah.... I'm just trying to recapture it for a moment um... There 59 were two things involved, um as we were ending the session. Clarified that sort of recapped it and that 60 um she needed to own her own truth and her own identity, ah and get that sorted out ah and then make a 61 decision ah relative to continuing in a relationship. But she needed to - that was where we left the 62 situation and so she is going away for a weekend and ah within myself I thought well, ah ... I felt good 63 with with where she was at that point because it sounded like she was going to take time to to get in 64 touch with her own truth. And um work on some identity ah ah elements and um and take her time in 65 making this other decision which was was moving out of a relationship I mean which she's been in for 66 fourteen years so it wasn't ah. So, I felt good with that. I thought - good she's going to um look at this. 67 um 68 69 H: Can you describe a little more about what feeling good is like for you. (Mary: Oh!) I can see where 70 she was but 71 72 Mary: Well, I felt that she was in touch with herself. 73 74 H: But what were you feeling? 75 76 Mary: um Well I felt good that she was in touch with herself. 77 78 H: So good for you includes... 79 80 Mary, um Her taking - recognizing her own truth and recognizing there were two things she had to look 81 at. One was her own identity and the other was the relationship and um that that was clear to her and 82 that she wasn't going to rush into some decision that she might regret, um ... 83 H: And for yourself did you have a sense of ..um having fulfilled your role - a sense of fulfillment 84 in in your (Mary: oh, okay) sense of feeling good, that you had achieved what you wanted to achieve in 85 the counselling. 86 87 Mary: Yah. I guess I felt that um um I was a means through which she could hear herself and sort out 88 what she needed to do. Cause I just raised questions and ah she some misconceptions about her - some 89 spirituality that was locking her in. Like God's will is very definite and clear and um had nothing to do 90 with her identity which we talked about. And so she seemed to have some clarity, um So I felt that I had 91 met some of her needs in - a was - that was not meeting her needs in a dependent sense but in a sense 92 that freed her. 93 94 H: So, when you meet, when you meet, when you met her needs in that situation you felt ... 95 96 Mary: Well, I felt that I was operating from my own um sense of of person - sense of identity, um sense 97 of what I um see myself to be about as a counsellor or as a person. Um It was affirming for me. um 98 99 H: You felt affirmed as a as a being. 100 101 Mary: Um hum, um hum. And that um you know that there was meaning and purpose to what I was 102 doing ... even though I wasn't making her decisions or wasn't um I was just exploring with her and she 103 was arriving at at um insights for herself. 104 105 H: And when you (cough, excuse me) and when you see that what you do has meaning and purpose and 106 that gives you a sense of... 107 108 Mary: Fulfillment, wholeness, integrity, um (H: hum) And 11 remember, this goes way back, I 109 remember even in high school, well it was towards the end of high school ah something came up in our 110 class discussion or something and and I became aware of being angry that no one had told me that I 111 could do some growthful things for myself, you know, my inner life, and ah (laugh) maybe they had but 112 I mean I you know, I was um but 11 made a decision then that if I ever had an opportunity I was always 113 going to let people know that they could grow beyond where they were. And its, that's been an 114 underlying um motive or or dynamic in a lot of what's gone on in my life. And what I've undertaken 115 and it's always been there to um sort of let other people know and call other people to grow beyond 116 where they are. At least make them aware that it's possible, ah 117 118 H: So that's been a real theme for you. And in this situation with this woman, when she ... when through 119 talking to you she was able to see some of the spiritual misconceptions she had that were blocking her 120 and be able to be look at her situation in a new way. (Mary: yah, ya)And you (?) that sense of being 121 fulfilled and whole. 122 123 Mary: And a kind of excitement about it for me but also for her. It was a, I felt ... However when she 124 came back ... um my anticipation was ah you know, when I left she came back from no it was the 125 next week um I'm getting the time different. I had seen her and we made an appointment for the next 126 week before she went away. That was it. So when she came back she had already ah told her husband 127 and made the decision that she was leaving and it -1 was a little bit taken back with that. Um because I 128 felt it was um a hasty move. That that was what was in me. Ah so here's where I struggle in respecting 129 her where she is and where she was. What she had done, ah because part of me wanted; part of me felt 130 sad ah because I felt it was too hasty um and ah because um she was going to take a little bit more time 131 when she left me the week before. And I felt that that was good for her as well as the situation that she 132 had described to me. That she has three teenage daughters and um to me it sounded like she needed time 133 and um to deal with that, with him, and with the girls instead of just making the decision and telling 134 him and um without talking at least that's what I thought was happening. And um but you know, I had 135 to respect her and say you know, I - a part of me was saying ooop! but the other part of me was saying 136 "Now it's her decision, her life. She has to move with what she saw was best and um and what she could 137 cope with. It's all her decision." Ans so I didn't say anything about my unease around that, um And she 138 also has ah a spiritual director and she was going to see her spiritual director on the weekend - check it 139 all out with him which raised a question for me there too. An unease because she wanted to get his 140 approval when she could give that to herself and needed to give it to herself. So to me it it's act a bit of 141 im-imaturity there in terms of dependency on on what he would say. um And at some point now, I will 142 not address that - I'll address that concern but not - not relative to her decision but address the concern 143 that I have about um as she continues to move in the direction she's going in - that um to take her time 144 because she's already dealing with some negative after affects of ah of ah the hastiness, I felt hasty but 145 for her that's the way she had to operate. And um ah and ah part of it is something you touched on in 146 your own relationship not talking with her partner - to let him know what's going on. Evidently there's 147 not very good communication. So anyway, all I'm describing there is um my struggle with allowing her 148 and not interfering with and creating unease in her. I could have and it would have been destructive. So 149 it was a matter of respecting where she was in her decision and what she had to do and um at that point 150 in time and not sort of move in and give her the impression that because even I've seen her since and ah 151 we're going to meet herself and her husband together and she was fearful of that because she 152 immediately said well, what does Mary want. Is Mary gonna put pressure on me t' you know, to work, to 153 go back in the relationship or whatever and ah and she said that. And I said that's not where I am. I said 154 all I want is the best for you and your husband whether you are together or apart. But um there's still so 155 there's still an element about around listening to somebody else and what other people will think or 156 what'what like her spiritual director. Like if her spiritual director had said No it's not a good move to 157 move 158 159 160 161 out, I don't know where she would have been. So, I'm ... trying to - using the word respect - trying to to 162 let her be who she is and deal with her life as she sees best to deal with it with um me just raising 163 questions or it's clarifying it some in terms of spirituality if there's misconceptions there - to possibly 164 open another dimension to how she understands something that she's been taught. 165 166 H: But when she came in that day, the second time, and had already decided to leave her husband, 167 presumably, um your what your experience was at that point was having to um struggle somewhat with 168 yourself to accept her reality (Mary: yup that's right) and your thoughts were that this is maybe hasty, 121 169 I'm not sure this is a good idea. And you said you felt sad. And I'm wondering if you could just -170 you've told me quite a bit about um I've got a clear idea of where you ended up but I'm not really sure 171 (Mary: what went on) what you did with your own self in order to (Mary: um hum) It sounds to me as 172 though your initial response was Oh no this isn't a good idea and then there is some where between 173 there and being able to being able to honour her her her um right to organize her life. What happened to 174 you in the middle. 175 176 Mary: Yah Yah, that's what I'm tryna - to um identify or put into words. Um II ... I didn't think this 177 isn't a good idea because I thought that she needed to move out of that relationship okay. What I felt was 178 that there needed to be some other work done both in herself and and some communication with 179 members of the family which she had not done. So that's what I was feeling - that there needed to be 180 some more processing done um even for her own sense of well being. That's what I thought. And um I 181 think some of that is proving to be true but um ... 182 183 H: That was your initial reaction to her 184 185 Mary: It was like oooogh It was like um I didn't (H: That almost sounds like it has a little bit of 186 apprehension in it?) Yah, for her (H: for her) And um what at least what she had shared with me um up 187 to that point because um what I was picking up then or what she said um was um ... she still was open 188 to a relationship with him, okay. However what I am hearing now is I'm not sure that she is. I think on 189 one level she thinks she is but on another as I'm hearing different things she's saying I'm not so sure. 190 So maybe she felt she should - so we need to look at that. But, anyway, my I'm just describing what 191 happened that day um and um for me it was like ah just like oh have you moved too quickly, or have you 192 moved to hastily. It was a little bit of a um surprise. 193 194 H: So you were feeling a sense of sadness, apprehension and surprise. (Mary: and yet) and that was all 195 coming from I don't know if I've understood you right so so tell me if I'm wrong here. I'm just trying to 196 summarize a bit what you've said that you say that as you look at respect in this sense you recognize that 197 those feelings and the thought of it being hasty and that the thought that she needed to have she needed 198 to finish some other work first, perhaps would be more beneficial for her were all kinda part of your 199 agenda (Mary: uh huh ya) and then you recognized that (Mary: uh huh, that's right) and then what 200 happened - for you - within yourself. 201 Mary: Within myself ... like (H: What what do you tell yourself at that point) It's like um my agenda is 202 not hers, ah Her agenda is what's important and she has t' live on that and live by that. 203 204 H: And when you tell yourself that what are you feeling then. What happens to your feelings? 205 206 Mary: Ah um There's a feeling of responsibility in me um that's always there but what I do in that 207 situation is I have to deal with my sense of responsibility (H: towards...) um taking care of other people 208 so then I have to say D your responsibility here is at the level of being present to this person and 209 leaving that person to make their own decisions, move on their own emotional states on what they're 210 able to cope with and handle and so my responsibility is not to to present my agenda but to help that 211 person to continue to explore their own. In fact to sort of let go. Like over the years I've you know, 212 recognized that and um so even though I might have a different sense of what's what's better or best 213 isn't necessarily what is for that person and so it's a letting go of my own agenda or what I think might 214 be best and it's seeing this other person needs to live their own life. 215 216 H: And when you do that and I so you feel um ... you separate out the like you feel responsible only for 217 being present to the person and you're letting go of the feeling of responsibility or imposing your agenda 218 or trying to influence that person with whatever you might think. (Mary: yup) And as you as you move 219 into this as you you know, you tell yourself that you're that that you know that they know that you want 220 to listen to where they are and you so one of the feelings that you have is this easing of responsibility. 221 It's almost like you there's one sense of responsibility that's good and another feeling of responsibility 222 that isn't and we don't have a separate word for those two in English (Mary: That's right) but I the one 223 that you're getting rid of is the part of responsibility where you would take over for the other person. 224 (Mary: yah, yah) So you're you're staying with being only responsible for yourself and being present to 122 225 that person. And as you do that are there any other any other feelings that you can any other 226 feeling words that you can give me that belong to that. 227 228 Mary: Yes, there is. Well, I don't know if I can make them that clear but. What also was within me was 229 for now that's where she is and if if there's um if it's appropriate or if it's fitting or if it's growthful for 230 her at some other point to um just have a look at hastiness or um coupled with the hastiness is is she 231 operates a lot on emotions and so um practical element needs to be um you know, the practical kinds of 232 things um and even spiritually like it it gets a little bit fuzzy but because spiritually too she can operate 233 on an insight ... um ... or read a direction in something that needs to be discerned before just operating 234 on it. So, so part of me, while 11 pulled back in that sense and and just listened to where she was and 23 5 allowed her to to explore or to express what was happening ah and then she was going to go to this 236 retreat and and see her spiritual director part of me within myself was saying you know, "I hope he's 237 wise." And I hope he doesn't become directive um because of some of the psychological dynamics that 23 8 were going on in her and um so. Also I sort have reserving kinds of concerns that if its timely at another 239 time I would um approach with her. 240 241 H: And that ..the sense ... the idea that you could come back to that. I'm thinking if I were in that 242 position it might feel.. there might be a sense of relief with that? 243 244 Mary: Yes. 245 246 H: So you're letting go of the responsibility but realizing that you know that there might be another 247 time. 248 249 Mary: Yes. And there's there's in me a sense of trust that if it's meant to be there will be another time 250 when it can either be heard - that was not a time when it would have been heard - it would have even at 251 least I read it as even um devastating. It was not it was not time to address the issue with her. That's 252 what I sensed in myself. 253 254 H: Because she had some kind of devastating things going on for her (Mary: that's right) and the 255 decision was in her. 256 257 Mary: That's right yup 258 259 H: This trust. Can you tell me more about this sense of trust. 260 261 Mary: I guess (H: what that means to you so that I understand my concept but I'm not sure I understand 262 your concept of trust) Well, in that kind of situation and in in over the years it's proved to be true that if 263 I sense something in a session and I sense that it's not time to explore I have a sense that if we continue 264 to meet and have further encounters there will be a time when I can address my concern. Also a sense 265 that um sometimes um I don't address the concern because either the person has addressed it themselves 266 or 11 even see that it might not be bet., that later on that um the person isn't ready to handle it so I even 267 have to leave it later on too. So it's a kind of ... I guess I trust that later on if it's time and if that I will 268 know later on in another time if if it's appropriate to bring that to the person's attention. 269 270 H: I see a connection between letting go of being responsible for the other person where the other person 271 is as we talked about earlier and that trust. 272 273 Mary: Yes, yes It's um because part of me is I still I want that person to grow um but sometimes I want 274 them to grow too quickly and um and then maybe what I'm seeing is ah ... no oddly enough I was 275 gonna say maybe what I'm seeing isn't really there no... that's not what I want to say ah I guess you 276 experience over the years those initial feelings 11 trust them in myself and ah um but sometimes people 277 aren't ready to move and so I ah (H: you trust that) Yah yah. And even in this case um ... even since um 278 ... she has moved on this decision and has already moved out of the house and and I see her um moving 279 very hastily in some things - practical things - um which she has to do in some sense - in some ways but 280 it it's sort of verifies my concern. And yet she has to function that way right now and so I don't want to 123 281 jeopardize that or or ah sorta put a ... what's the feeling ... ah I would not be helpful at this point 282 in time if I were to raise a question that causes her to question herself. She needs to operate on .. in..ah 283 ah later on I will address my concern with her so that she will continue to grow but it's not not at this 284 time because she's having to do a lot of practical things to ah get herself resituated with her children. 285 286 H: And you are trusting your own process, your own intuition on this? And that 11 would like you to um 287 .... I'm kinda searching for a question that will in which you would be able to tell me more about 288 what that process of trusting yourself means to you. I mean what .... what are you what are you in fact 289 trusting and what because that seems to be a really valuable component about this that if you can trust 290 ... I'm not sure what that's my question then you can let go of this wanting to be responsible for the 291 other person. And I'm wondering if you can tell me a little more about what you are trusting. 292 293 Mary: I guess um That's a good question. I guess what I'm trusting is that that person has within her 294 what she needs um even though it's confused or whatever at this time or um or um And that the growth 295 process is ongoing and it's not sort of a one time look at her identity and her own truth and her own 296 growth that that we continue to look at that as we go through a growth process so that there isn't sort of 297 a one time opportunity to look at that. 298 299 H: So the trust is that there are many opportunities. You trust that people are given opportunity and 300 opportunities (?) (Mary: yup) by.. 301 302 Mary: Well, through their their um their living situation - um the different experiences they have to 303 handle, um 304 305 H: And would there be any connection for you in this area now at this end with respect? 306 307 Mary: With what (H: with) yes (H: with this idea of trust) There's also um um ... like the valuing of the 308 person is important to me. Like the self that is this person that um she's dealing with a lot of of um of 309 hurts and um limitations and um and I see her wanting to emerge from some of those and um the step 310 she's taking is part of that and um but I also believe we can't do it all at once so there's a trust in from 311 my own experience that I know I've grown in steps and my own experience too you know is that if I've 312 maybe been given an opportunity at one point and I don't take it but it will be there again maybe in a 313 different form or shape but it will be there. Um and ah it's not just a psychological reality that I trust in 314 it's that a spiritual reality or the spiritual belief that I have that the self is always continuing to emerge 315 and is to become more whole ah since I believe that and I also believe that the opportunities will be there 316 and um maybe if I continue to see this person I might be a means through which you know she can look 317 at some ah dimensions of that ah but I guess I am also aware that a person can only handle so much at a 318 time and that's what caused me to hold off and say "Okay she's dealing with enough right now and she 319 needs to feel she can handle that right now, and um there'll be a time to look at something else um you -320 another dimensions of her growth experience for herself for her own truth, and her own identity, um 321 once she gets some things settled. Some of that is already happening because um which affirms um my 322 own sense of what was best and my own sense of holding back and not ah ah because her husband in the 323 meantime and we are going to have a meeting together but she is very fearful of that. So part of what I 324 was picking up was her fearfulness and I didn't want to ah to um dampen the courage that she had 325 to move in in in the way that she feels she needs to do. Um yah, I didn't want to ah a word comes to 326 mind - squelch her her um move that she has taken, um 327 328 H: So if I just 329 Mary: Sorry I'm not being 330 H: No It's fine this is great! ah You're - in trying to respect this person you have separated out being 331 responsible in order to be respectful you you choose to be responsible for yourself being present to her 332 and not want to have your agenda interfere with her and part of um... how you how you do that, how you 333 accomplish that is that you have trust that in her in her growth as a person as a philosophy of life that's 334 what people are here for is to emerge to be more self, more of themself and also the trust that she will 335 have other opportunities to deal with the issues that you think are present for her now and to be 336 appreciative of the fact that her plate is already full (Mary: yah) So all of those things are part of your 124 337 respecting and as you say pulling back and allowing the process to unfold in itself and that's part 338 of how you work with yourself in order to be respectful to this person. 339 340 Mary: And I have a sense when I do that and I had that sense that day ah you know, pulling sort of 341 putting my own assessment on the shelf for a little while - or my own not assessment -that's not what I 342 want - my own - maybe readiness to move to have to go to move with her but sensing she's not ready to 343 move in the direction that I sort am anticipating and um in fact she had moved very quickly to a decision 344 which I thought she was going to leave for a little while and so I had to sorta say to myself ah "Mary, 345 you know, the sense you had of where she would be today is not where she is. She's moved ahead on 346 something but on something else has not. So you have to let her be where she is." So it was 347 348 (interrupted by the phone and we started talking before I turned on the tape recorder again) 349 350 H: So I'm just going to repeat what you just said that we have it. You just said that some that some - that 351 you are aware that sometimes you might have to be directive, 352 353 Mary: yes. If if you know, if I have a sense that the person is ready for it um... and um ... and I'll say 354 that like you know, at times that I really prefer not to be directive but you know, I'm feeling the need to 355 ask this question or to um to make this observation and what do you think with it and what do with it 356 um. 357 358 H: Can you explain to me how um how being directive and being respectful might interact for you? 359 360 Mary: pause 11 suppose. Like I don't just move in and become directive, ah I'll make a comment like "I 361 don't usually operate directively but um I'm wondering if at this time we need to do that. Like are you 362 needing me to sort of ah ... be directive." um But usually that's only when I see someone is let's say, 363 very depressed or someone's very confused and is feeling stopped and doesn't know where to go. And I 364 remember um a person um years ago wouldn't trust anybody and I know I was running a risk - a big risk 365 and was suicidal and so um I just said - this was like on a weekend where I met her - someone had asked 366 me to talk to her because they were very anxious for her. So we were just chatting like you know it 367 wasn't a counselling session as such but we were chatting and I was trying to see where she was and ah 368 ended up because she had to get into a vehicle and go home we were quite a distance from her home, 369 and mine also, and ah so I said to her "Could we get together? Would you like us to get together?" and 3 70 so she said yes. Well, she was really hesitant. She said I really have difficulty trusting people and I said 371 "Well, will you trust me 'til Tuesday? Just 'til Tuesday." And this was Sunday. So it gave her time to get 372 home and me to get home and then we - she didn't live too far from where I was living. And I knew I 373 was running a risk but I thought -1 sensed that if - that I could handle um if if too much dependency 374 was coming um or would come as the result of it I would watch that all along the way but I thought at 375 least if she could trust me 'til Tuesday, if she could count on somebody to be there for her on Tuesday 376 that we might be able to um go somewhere and and so I said "Just trust me 'til Tuesday." So that was 377 becoming a little bit more directive and I would - and um and she did. So we got together on the 378 Tuesday and I said then "Will you trust me 'til next week?" So um until we got together again um ... 379 there's another situation where I would say to somebody - Look I want you to do this , this, and this or 380 one thing before you come back next time. But it would always be something relative to their own inner 381 growth. It wouldn't be sort of on some practical - well, some practical thing - well, tonight before you go 382 to bed write out something you are going to do tomorrow. 383 384 H: And 11 have a sense of how this ties in with being respectful but I don't want to put words into your 385 mouth so I'd like you to explain to me how that connects for you - being directive (Mary: And still 386 respectful) Sounds to me as though sometimes you can be directive and still be respectful but you sense 3 87 that there's time where that might not be the case. I'm wondering if you could... 388 389 Mary: I'm not sure what you mean anymore. It sounds like there might be times when it might not be 390 the case 391 125 392 H: Well, when when when a person being directive (Mary: Oh) might not be respectful but there 393 are times - I'm sensing that's what you are telling me (Mary: Oh okay) but I'm not really sure so I.. 394 395 Mary: Okay, All right okay, well -1 do not feel that I would be respecting someone if I just told them 3 96 what to do. Just said that - "Go and do this." Um ... I sense I'm respecting the person if I say something 397 like "I don't want to be directive but I think you need right now some kind of guidance. Or um 398 somebody who and I've done this, somebody who's very depressed and doesn't even want to get up in 399 the morning. Say well, so they've got nothing to do or they don't know what to do say well you know, 400 "Tonight I want you to write out one thing you are going to do tomorrow." But it's always with that idea 401 that um I don't want to control your life. I want you to live your own life but this could be a step 402 towards you becoming motivated and feeling good about yourself because you've accomplished one 403 thing. So, I usually talk about it that way. It's not just "I want you to do this." Ah It's interesting it's not 404 / want you, it would, it's more a matter of um - "This seems like something you could handle. How 405 about doing this?" or with with that person "trust me until" - but it's always with a sense of a even there 406 it was "Will you trust me?" 407 408 H: Will you so that the focus is on the 'you' (D yah, yah) not on the - 'cause you said it's not I want but 409 it's you it's what you can do. So it's very much focused on the reality of the other person. 410 411 Mary: Yes, yah. And something that's, - well, even sometimes "What would be something you would 412 like to see yourself do tomorrow?" And then, "All right, tonight" you know, " before you go to bed, write 413 that out for yourself, so it's concrete. And then do that tomorrow so you can get a - so you can allow 414 yourself to feel the feelings of of what it feels like hav- having done that." Um ... so it's a .. And 415 sometimes I'll say um you know, "I'm going to be very directive here and tell you to stop doing that\" 416 (laugh) You know, something along those lines like um .. or um "Stop putting yourself down!" (laugh) 417 um ... And then we'll talk about what that would be. Um... Where do you put yourself down or 418 whatever, um So, it's not, I'm realizing that it's ah .... I suppose um...ah some of what goes on for me 419 is that um people who have had very directive spiritual directors, have - there's been a lot of damage 420 done. Where, where people will say "My director told me to do this." or "My counsellor told me to do 421 this." And I feel very uncomfortable with that. Because um... I know some people can say that they were 422 told to do it but um I think it has to come from the person themselves. That they're not becoming 423 dependent on somebody else telling them what to do or how to live their lives 'cause they're going to 424 have to live their own lives, ah.. I don't believe that it helps people to um ... to be organizing or planning 425 their lives for them. And I know that there's less and less of that happening today but those are some 426 realities and I still meet people who say those things. Now, whether their counsellor or their spiritual 427 director has been that controlling and directive I don't know. Could be they heard it that way but I feel 428 uncomfortable with it. 429 430 H: For your own way of being. 431 432 Mary: That's right. And for for my own approach or or my own philosophy of of therapy or 433 psychotherapy, ah 434 43 5 H: At the beginning of the interview you talked about being you know, in the counselling situation as 436 being one kind of situation. We've talked about I think a couple of examples that have given me an 437 example for that. You said that the idea of being respectful in a non-counselling situation is a little bit 438 different for you. I'm wondering if we can talk about that for a little while? 439 440 Mary: pause 11 suppose I enter into ... ah hum ... pause ... I was going to say, I suppose I enter 441 into relationships expecting that people are going to be .... ah... I like to think anyway that I meet 442 people where they are at that point. Now, I know that we all have the baggage we can't - we have and 443 whether it's conscious or unconscious different personality types have had impacts on us and I know 444 that. um... But when when I get the message or any indicator at all that um I'm not met at who I 445 am or met um ... sort of with lack of prejudice or whatever, when I get that any indicators of that nature 446 then I struggle more with um being um... 11 still do it - try to meet that person where they are but I have 447 to do a lot of more processing in myself. 126 448 449 H: I would like you to tell me about what happens when you are processing. What, what process is it that 450 you go through. Maybe if you think of a particular situation? Tell me about what you were thinking in 451 that situation? 452 453 Mary: um... (H: as you went through that process) pause ... Okay I'm just thinking of a particular 454 situation. And like I ah this is not a first encounter. I've had a couple of other encounters with this 455 person. And ah, um... we're really not known to each other that well. And ah, so it's just um that I'm ah 456 ..um ..don't have any antagonism towards (interruption with tape recorder beeping. H: go ahead) So 457 initially I'm I'm just hum ... I guess I'm a certain amount of openness, um ... to sort of a um 458 not that there'd be ever ever a I don't expect that there's going to be any close relationship but there'd 459 be an easy kind of relationship - an exchange of ideas, an exchange of courtesy ah, um, 460 461 H: Sort of a basis social relationship? 462 463 Mary: yah, and ah But then I was asking if I could um ... you know, move in if if I well, let's if I could 464 do something. And ah immediately I picked up some reserve or negative kind of stance. Okay. So then 465 that immediately puts me on guard ah and and ah I struggle with with putting up a wall of defensiveness 466 and um that in relationship with still being open to where this person is. So I'm I'm the struggle be., and 467 I do I back off a bit so there is some defensiveness, some protectiveness in place or ready to to be even 468 more protective if necessary and um but 11 know but I'm aware that I still am trying to say to myself -469 'This person is um has their own needs and their own problems and their own defensiveness and um so 470 how can I be present to this. Because without um just sort of um backing off totally, um So there there's 471 the interaction but there's the openness has lessened. 472 473 H: Because your defensiveness steps in you feel less open as well and that's kind of an exchange there. 474 475 Mary: That's right and there's also a feeling of (tape turned over, missed some) 476 477 that, that even changes. It becomes more business like. Becomes um with the openness there was the -478 there's that word trust again - with the openness there was a possibility of more trust growing. With the 479 indicators that I was picking up, and 11 pulled back, there's less openness and there's less trust. There's 480 less um sense of well, there could be a a even a friendly interaction here, even the friendly interaction 481 lessens. It becomes um .... and yet um .. so The di - the encounter is not is not mutual anymore ah and 482 um so I start to ah um back off and um and feel sad. Feel um ... disappointed and in that case I felt 483 angry because of th- of the exchange, um... felt hurt because I wasn't respected myself. Coming from 484 where I was coming from and um ..ah... seen as coming from this image that this person had rather 485 than who I really was. So ah or sense myself to be anyway, um And so it was hurt from that kind of of 486 awareness and then saying within myself ah that's where that person is. That's the image they have. 487 There's not much I can do about that, um Other than getting into defending myself, which at that point I 488 thought it's not going to do any good because they've already formed an opinion and are already 489 operating from it in relationship to me. So um and since it wasn't a counselling situation. For a 490 counselling situation I would've moved in to make something different about that because the other 491 person then would be in my presence to grow and that would be a non growth situation, um But um, ... 492 hum... 493 494 H: And so what do you do from there. Like the initial reaction is the defensiveness, less open, some loss 495 of trust and you feel yourself stepping back from that and then you tell yourself well, 'That's where this 496 person is. This isn't a situation where I'm not - I'm choosing not to try and make the situation different 497 by defending myself or changing her opinion of me. That's one thing that you do. And then and then 498 what happens? 499 500 Mary: Well, In that situation I did - certainly spoke what I needed to say. I didn't just sort of not say 501 what I needed to say. I didn't get into a whole lot on on terms of defensiveness I just in terms of 502 verbalizing it I did say that that was not the case and I let it go. And um, just sort of said well, ah ... 503 ah... I guess a certain amount of acceptance that that's where that person is. 127 504 505 H: And is that part of your - is that part of being respectful? 506 507 Mary: Part of it is but there is a negative about it too. There's a sadness about it. That that's where that 508 person is and um (sigh) ...it also um unless there were .. if if that person became a little bit more open 509 or indicated something different I'm aware I would more back into some kind of exchange or or ah ... 510 ... 511 512 H: The sadness seems to come from a loss of a relationship that you had wanted (Mary: uh huh, uh huh) 513 and I'm wondering how that is separate from being able to be respectful with that person? 514 515 Mary: pause. You're wondering if ..? 516 517 H: Well, you're, you're in a situation where you're sad because of the loss and because you sense that 518 they don't accept you um in the way that you see yourself or the way that you want them to see you but 519 they're 520 521 Mary: I've already taken a stand, yah. 522 523 H: Yah and ... you brought this experience up as a time when you also then felt it difficult to be 524 respectful of them. 525 526 Mary: It - what was the struggle yah the struggle going on inside um (H: So I'm wondering what 527 happens at the end like I have a really clear idea )Mary: yah, uh huh (about how it starts but as you 528 progressed to become more respectful or regain a sense of ... I don't know where the movement is so 529 could you tell me about that?) 530 531 Mary: pause ... I It's ah I guess a struggle with it deteriorating. As long as there isn't interaction. Maybe 532 not deteriorating, ah or becoming indifferent to the relationship because it's not going anywhere. 533 There's nothing going on that changes it to take it in a more positive direction or a negative direction 534 and yet that's not life is it. I'm just theorizing at the moment, just reflecting, um So I'm struggling with 535 it deteriorating because I would like it to be different. I mean, I'm - there's no way I'm wanting any kind 536 of ah ah total acceptance of me or any close relationship but just a nice friendly kinda "Hi, how are 537 you?" (laugh) or ah I would like it to be that way and I struggle in myself sometimes to be that way 538 when the occasion arises, um, because it - there's nothing on which to interact with, um And I would 539 like it to be different. Like there's no um common base on which to even talk or exchange or whatever 540 and um ah so I keep wanting though -1 keep saying to myself - 'This is a good person. This person is 541 doing a lot of good. This person is um certainly meaningful in other people's lives.' um and um so those 542 kinds of thoughts are there, um And what makes it difficult is that there is contact periodically if 543 if you know, if there was none well, then it would be well that was a person I met in my life and that's 544 the end of it. And an um there's no further dealings with the person, um So, it's too - some of what I do 545 in counselling is still there - it's still valuing this this person the way they have developed, the way 546 they've grown, the limitations they have or that this person has in terms of relating in terms or relating 547 with me and ah that we are wounded people and that we are all struggling to grow and um and have our 548 limitations in which we can do that, um 549 550 H: When you tell yourself that this person, you know, is a valuable person, that they have meaningful 551 relationships with other people and they've done a lot of good in the world ... it sounds to me as though 552 hum ... you are setting something up for yourself there? you're creating something for yourself by 553 going through that process of telling yourself those things and reminding yourself of that, um where 554 where is - how would you describe where you are after that process. Because in the beginning you are 555 being defensive and then you go through this process and at the end ... 556 557 Mary: Well, I think there's still the protectiveness around myself ah in relationship to that person. 11 558 will not, um I'm not ready to to become vulnerable to that person, um I guess I'm (laugh) funny 559 thought comes to mind - you know reserving judgment about um ... um and I've well, would I 128 560 takes some steps to interact at some point? If I needed to. um If I um um for some reason or other 561 um like if ... for the sake of somebody else or some project whatever that I had to interact, I would do 562 that. I know I would do that. Because you know, if it was something of value I wouldn't just sort of not 563 connect up. ah 564 565 H: It sounds to me as though you can't have a social sort of friendly relationship with this person but 566 from the point of view of respect you ... you're initial reaction was ... was negative and that you 567 recognized that you needed to work on yourself which you do by seeing the good things about the other 568 person, telling yourself and noticing on purpose what the other person has done. ... and although some 569 of your feelings of protectiveness and not wanting to be vulnerable to that other person that remain at 5 70 the end of that process ... still as regards respect -1 just want you to say at the end of the process where 571 that is - it sounds as though you're you've been able to see that person from maybe from where they're 572 coming from - as much as you know but allowing them to be coming from where they're coming from. 573 574 Mary: Yah, Like I ah hum, Yes, I guess it's recognize - where I see this person um 11 see this 575 person as ah a very defensive person and I feel sad for that or or ... um .... and also coupled with that 576 controlling um... um... um ... My own defensiveness is around a .. um is personal whereas I could 577 relate with with this person on objective kinds of things or if it had to deal with other issues um but I 578 certainly wouldn't um I thought there would at least be some level of understanding, um And I guess my 579 own expectations got in the way there Or my own expectations set me up to be um ... to be hurt because 580 I was assuming or expecting that there'd be a little bit more respect (laugh) I guess on their part for me 581 and who I was or who I am or at least give me the benefit of the doubt to find out who I am before 582 operating on on whatever image or whatever was there. 583 584 H: And so that sets up the difficulty then for you to respect them. 585 586 Mary: That's right. Yup. Yes, that's true. Like in the counselling situation um there's there's and 587 already, even though there's fear on the part of it (sneeze) even though people are fearful when they're 588 coming to a counsellor and have not met you and this kind of thing, there's still um ... and there's 589 nervousness initially and even as time goes on to some extent - there's still a respect, there's still an 590 awareness that that um or an openness to to ah ... what? ... to explore together I guess who each is. And 591 or at least give each other some space to discover that. Whereas in this particular situation that was not 592 my experience. So um ... um...so in the counselling situation um... on my part there's a great reverence 593 for the other person, that they would be that trusting of me at that point. Or at least have some degree of 594 of trust to even be in the same room with a stranger that you don't know or you've been referred to. And 595 II really appreciate and value them letting themselves be that vulnerable or um and um ... yah I admire 596 and appreciate that. And um so in the situation I just described that wasn't there. 597 598 H: And at the end or where where you are now with the situation, um are you able to respect that 599 person? 600 601 Mary: Um In some ways yah, in some ways. ... It's not the same way, it's not obviously I mean there 602 isn't the reverence I just described in terms of of this person allowing themselves to be vulnerable or or 603 ah even trusting to whatever extent they are able to ah and to start exposing themselves, ah There's ah 604 trynna get words to describe what's there, um ... There's no ah no personal experience like on an 605 emotional level of of um ahm ... yah, - you connect, there's a connection. 606 607 H: So that connection - being able to have that connection is a condition for you for being able to 608 respect. 609 610 Mary: The degree, the degree of respect. It feels like that. I mean, it's a feeling thing You know, 611 in this other situation um ... it's like um there was no opportunity to connect as persons. It was ah ... 612 almost something predisposed or something and so it was like hitting(?) against something that was not 613 it it was - the way I'm putting it now, an image instead of a person. 614 615 H: How do you recognize that there is no possibility of connection. Or - how do you recognize that? 129 616 617 Mary: Well, I'm not saying that there's no possibility (H: okay) I'm just saying that the feeling was at 618 that point in that particular encounter that there wasn't. 619 620 H: Yes, I didn't want to generalize it. What I was wanting was um how do you recognize that? 621 622 Mary: pause In a sense you are asking to ah ah what chara - what are the elements of the connection (H: 623 uh huh) 624 long pause 625 Well, I guess for one thing, well in the counselling situation the other person might not feel we are on an 626 equal footing but I do. Like while the other person might feel they're vulnerable and they say 'How do I 627 start?' 'What where I I've never been in this situation before. I don't know what I'm supposed to do.' 628 So, they they might feel that I'm not - that there're, you know, that they're not in an equal position but I 629 do not feel the other person is less than I am and that I feel that we are going to explore together um and 630 ah so that's a positive thing whereas in this other situation it was like the door was already closed. There 631 wasn't an equal kind of 632 633 H: I'm just wondering how you recognize that? What are the earmarks of the door being closed? 634 635 Mary: Well, in this particular situation it was um very formal, um ... 'Cause I thought I was just going 636 to have a conversation and it becomes a -1 guess the message was - there was a the lack of equality it 637 was like - "I'm in charge here." and ah hum it wasn't two people talking. It was like um yah um 638 ... huh ... that's a major one it was um ... ... even the way somebody sits gives you that message, aum 639 I guess the way a person will initially say hello. Or um 640 641 H: So when this person said hello (Mary: yah [pensive]) was formal. A more formal form of speech ( 642 Mary: yes) and more formal gestures perhaps? 643 644 Mary: yah, uh huh, yes. 645 646 H: When you were talking earlier about respect and you were talking about being directive and how um 647 for you ah that you would not be respectful of another person yourself if you were operating from your 648 point of view or your agenda rather than operating from what where you saw them to be. And it seems 649 as though here, that this is the reverse situation. That somebody is - is being very directive with you 650 (Mary: yah kinda) and as being now on the other side of that you find it difficult to respect the person 651 (Mary: That's right) who is being directive towards you. 652 653 Mary: That's right. Directive and controlling and not calling forth. It's rather a um Throwing stuff at 654 you really. Well, it's .. well it feels that way. It's just like and it's already decisions or information is 655 there and there's no need for anything from you, of anything from you. I'm just aware that at the 656 meeting we had on the weekend - it's helping me clarify what it is that I came away from there feeling. I 657 thought I would feel like - but my experience of our meetings recently is not -1 don't come away feeling 658 alive. And ah or feeling ah energized is the word. I come away feeling sad. And I struggle during the 659 meeting and that is what it is. It's um one person in particular is um controlling or has to always have 660 an additional piece of information - always has to be, and I'm saying always and I want to be careful, but 661 it seems , it feels that way and I'm watching the dynamics and it's it's it's being controlled um um . 662 There isn't sort of and again my expectations are - well, 'What do you think?' or 'What is your point of 663 view?' And um its more directive and controlling and becoming more so more recently. That's why I'm 664 noticing it. It wasn't always that way. And so I react to that. And it's and it's along the lines it's not 665 respecting the other person. Like some of the pieces of information that I was experiencing on the week-666 didn't have to be said. They could have been left unsaid and allow the person who gave their report or 667 gave their information to just feel that they had done it. Now, maybe I was being oversensitive but 668 instead of saying "Oh yah, there's this other point." This person had to seem to come in all the time with 669 adding um something that didn't really matter. (H: Almost a one-up-man-ship) uh hum. So there was 670 some of that happening. 671 130 672 H: And that makes it really difficult for you to be respectful. 673 674 Mary: Yes, it does, yup I'm yup it does. And, and coupled with it I don't trust as much then. So then I 675 don't trust so I wouldn't be as open. 676 677 H: So then then your process is to um recognize that recognize that lack of trust, openness, 678 defensiveness, to go through the self talk that we've talked about before, and um you recognize in the 679 end that you can't have the friendliness and that you have to have some, some protection rather than 680 even defensiveness (Mary: Yah, yah throughout the rest of my speaking) but some protection on your 681 vulnerability towards that person but you have really made an effort to see the good in that person. And 682 that's as far as you can go towards being respectful at this point in time with that person in that 683 situation. Is that correct? 684 685 Mary: That's right, yah. 686 687 H: What makes it really hard for you to be respectful is when somebody is very directive and controlling 688 and um towards you and not recognizing (interruption with other tape) and not recognizing um where 689 other people - not just you but where other people are. 690 691 Mary: Yah, See at one time I wouldn't um I'd just react to it. But um I'm um yah I would just 692 become very defensive but I've grown over the years and I'm not just defensive. I choose to to still say 693 what I need to say, or even challenge the person um um because I feel either injustice or some decision 694 needs um my input whether it's cut down or not. um And um I deal with it more on a well, objective 695 level and to say 'This needs to be addressed." Even at that meeting I'm thinking of now, is this incident 696 that I just described that something similar happened. But I said I want to speak to that issue. You know, 697 I saw that happening and it was like was well, we're going to move on to the next item and I said "I 698 need to speak to that issue." See at one time I would have taken it personally and um not that situation 699 because it wasn't directed at me personally but I was struggling with the dynamics and trying to assess 700 what was going on and was struggling - what I was struggling with an and a 701 702 - H: And in that struggle you found out... What was it that you saw while you struggled. 703 704 Mary: Well, some of what we were just talking about. There was this subtle control or this this even this 705 competitiveness ah an element of that and that I could sort of say "Oh, to heck with it. Why should I ..." 706 You know, but there is something bigger in this. This is our provincial council meeting and this is these 707 are decisions relative to our community which is bigger than this one individual ah and so um if it didn't 708 really matter to me then I wouldn't bother but when it's something that does matter then I don't just sort 709 of not bother. I'm so I moved in. And it was really interesting then. I presented my input and it it went a 710 whole new direction because other people moved in. Because when 11 resent when these kinds of 711 controlling things come in, sometimes they will cut people off and growth doesn't happen. It stays at a 712 standstill. 713 714 H: When you have the courage to say what you feel needs to be said and sort of um whereas as you said 715 in the past you might have just been defensive and quiet but now you have the courage to say ... Does 716 that make you - does that change at all your ability to be respectful to the person who's controlling. 717 718 Mary: No,.um In in the sense that ah I still address that person, she was sitting right beside me and I 719 and it was to her I said I need to speak to that and I can really tell her when she does something well. 720 And ah um in fact like she's our provincial and I have to relate with her. Um but I don't - and I respect 721 some of her abilities and value those and not just on an intellectual level. But I do value those. At one 722 time when she wasn't as controlling 11 felt a connection with her and more trust. I don't have as much 723 trust now as I'm seeing other dynamics or other patterns of behaviour in her that ah so ah but I still 724 value her as a person and I still see a lot of what she's doing as good for for the for the community 725 group. 726 131 727 H: I'm just wondering how your development in being able to um ... have the courage to say what 728 you need to say, how that changes your dynamic well, in this example it is with this person who is being 729 very directive and controlling - does that change for you how you are in the situation with the other 730 person and therefore how that other person... how you.. 731 732 Mary: Well, it it um again the only way and I used the word before on the other case - like it becomes 733 more businesslike. There isn't an emotional connection. It changes the emotional connection. It changes 734 from a mutual understanding to um because I don't um ... I've been trying to sort it out quite honestly, 73 5 for myself, ah um ... maybe other people are able to um still feel close to someone like that and um. 736 Although I have other individuals that I can call a spade a spade with and still feel close and still feel we 73 7 really care for each other, um But in this case, it's not because well, there hasn't been a close 738 relationship. I mean, a real friendship relationship before. I mean, I like her. We've had interactions that 739 at times -1 guess part - there's another dynamic there that gets in the way of that one is that um I was 740 starting to trust and as as the relationship developed and um but then um I get startled or surprised with 741 with another approach like there can seem to be a closeness on her part and I open to that and then um 742 then the next time I would see her then it's not there. There is a different place - and that - and I think 743 that's -1 don't think that's with me personally I think that's with other people too, so there's a 744 vulnerability there and so um that's another part of it. 745 746 H: You didn't have the relationship already (Mary: un ah, no) developed? 747 748 Mary: No. And I don't know if there ever would be. um Just different personalities that's all. It's not 749 that there's any antagonism it's just different personalities and ah. 750 751 H: So that's you're relationship with with her but I'm thinking also -1 would be curious about what 752 changed for you um in just sort of iwfrapersonally in in how you see you relate when had the courage to 753 stand, I'm using the word courage here because it was your word (Mary: uh huh) earlier on, the courage 754 to say what you needed to say what you needed to say in that kind of a situation, you say, you started off 755 years ago you didn't and now you have the courage to do that and I'm wondering if the difference in you 756 from before when you didn't do that and now when you do do that changes how you see things just from 757 your point of view. 758 759 Mary: Well, 11 guess um I need to correct something, like um I wouldn't ness.. - like if 760 something doesn't matter then I - in the past even - it didn't matter and I would make that decision in 761 myself. I would feel sad about it but I'd make that decision in myself, um And sometimes though I 762 would speak to issues whether because for myself, to be true to myself I had to say things even in the 763 past, but I think I say them more freely and more - less emotionally in a sense that if I believe in 764 something or see something that's true or something needs to be said now but without um taking it too 765 personally if it's not heard or rejected or whatever, um I feel good that I've said what I need to say 766 because I would not like myself if I didn't. So that part of it is true. It is the same in a counselling 767 situation. Like if I don't um ah ... move in the direction of of dealing with whatever I am sensing needs 768, to be addressed um at some point along the way then um then I don't feel like I'm being true to who I 769 am or um so I'm going - I'm jumping here (H: no) In terms of the relationship with the given person 770 um I feel sad, I feel uneasy if it ends up um not or what I've said creates a barrier or some block to a 771 relationship I don't I don't ah I guess I go through a struggle because I have to you know, 772 whether what's more important that I um cater to a relationship or that I'm true to myself. 773. 774 H: Right now, you just described a process to me of um becoming more detached when you s - when you 775 that you would always say what you felt needed to be said and over time you have been able to be less 776 emotional and I perhaps will ask if the word like more detached (Mary: yah, yah spotted throughout this 777 part)from the reactions other people and as you become more detached from the reactions of other 778 people and the responses of other people does that um is there any connection to becoming more 779 free from your own attachment to any particular response is there any connection between that and 780 giving that same freedom to other people. 781 132 782 Mary: Yes, there is. um pause um ... yup,... Yes, it's allowing people to be who they really 783 are - to have their own feelings about how they interact even though the situation I mentioned - she had 784 to make her decisions in keeping with her own feelings and in keeping with her own reality and ah ... 785 ah... um Yes, and and yes I want that for me. um and um ... ah... I'm missing something here. I had it 786 and then I'm missing it. um ... ah... I'm losing hold of it. (H: that's okay) um pause ... Yes, in 787 being able to - being more free and saying what I needed to say is ah Oh I know um - The greater 788 freedom came when I wasn't expecting others to - like my identity wasn't tied up in in being in my ideas 789 being accepted and so or not accepted. My identity is beyond that and I - people don't value what I say 790 or what I feel needs to be said at least it was valued by me and at least I said it and I needed to do that. 791 ah and and um. Yes I would like people to respect that in me the way I would respect it in them because 792 um it is closely identified with who they are. um and um I react very strongly when I sense people are 793 being put down or ignored um um and not being allowed to be who they are. It comes to mind at the 794 meeting when somebody was expressing ah - now maybe they don't feel that way at all -1 - don't don't 795 get affected by it that way - um but I recall feeling - sensing the joy and excitement of whatever was 796 being expressed and the - it's like "You didn't get quite enough. There's a little bit more to be said here. 797 And I thought Ahh! "What difference did it make?" Why not just let that person say what was there and 798 enjoy it and feel good about it. Because um yah! it was ah just experiencing some fullness of 799 themselves and then it's almost like minimized. So I suppose when somebody minimizes who I am I 800 don't have as much respect for that person. I don't have as much trust, pause 801 I guess it's it's giving - a thought comes to mind - the benefit of the doubt, letting - giving the 802 person the opportunity to be as much as they can be at that given point in time and do we ... ah ... 803 anyway. ... 804 805 H: Are you saying that respecting someone is giving the other person the opportunity to - I've forgotten 806 exactly what your words were just a minute age - who they are at a given point in time? 807 808 Mary: Yah, yah. And building on that you know, growing on that with that. If it's false or phony then 809 that has to be addressed but um ... um ... 810 811 H: Well, I think that's great! Is there anything else that you want to say? Do you feel finished with this? 812 813 Mary: I don't know if I feel finished. I'm feeling tired. 814 133 1 Transcript # 5, Leonard: 2 3 H: Preamble - Could you tell of an experience recently where you wanted to be respectful but found it 4 difficult to be respectful? 5 6 Leonard: Is that toward a client or a colleague? 7 8 H: One with a client and maybe one from your personal life. 9 10 Leonard: Okay. And the difficulty I had in terms of being respectful toward this client. 11 12 H: What your experience was - what you were thinking, what you were saying to yourself, what you did 13 about it where you got to - It doesn't mean you were able to be as respectful as you would have like to 14 have been and if you couldn't what was it that you couldn't do - and why what was stopping you. 15 16 Leonard: Do you want me to give you the background of how this began then? 17 18 H: So that I can get a sense of meaning - yah, enough background of the actual situation to give context. 19 20 Leonard: When you said -1 hate to think that I don't have respect for my clients. I do it's just a matter of 21 when I define respect it's you know losing respect for them or having difficulty in terms of their 22 thinking or their behaviour and struggling with that - that I assume falls into the category of kind of 23 lack of respect for them. Is that correct? 24 25 H: I don't know. It's whatever it is for you. What I want is what you think was being not respectful. What 26 you think being respectful is. I'm trying to find out what that means to people. I don't have a definition 27 for it. 28 29 Leonard: Well there was a client that I immediately thought of when you first started talking about this 30 and it had to do with him not working. He'd come to me for career counselling. He lived with a woman 31 and she was supporting him. He had worked - a very bright guy - but was saying he couldn't work 32 because he was going through a custody battle with the mother of his child. I recognized how difficult 33 that is for men when they are excluded from custody because the laws are very much slanted toward 34 women in custody battles and he had reached the point where he was no longer - he still had access and 3 5 the child was coming to visit him on every second weekend. He really felt that he no longer could really 36 influence her. She didn't want to come very much and that kind of stuff. And the mother was saying 37 nasty things about him and he couldn't quite understand how he could get this relationship that was 38 important to him back on track etceteras. So he had reached the point where he didn't want to have 3 9 anything to do with the mother and wouldn't pay any child support or any money if he wasn't working. 40 So the difficulty that I had was in terms of I guess my own value system - is how and I guess it is respect 41 - how can I respect somebody and I recognize the difficulties he was having but I have a hard time 42 respecting the behaviour. In my point of view it doesn't matter the hassles you have with the mother. 43 You're responsibility is to your child. And so I had difficulty in terms of respecting as a person when he 44 struck me as being so narcissistic. In terms of all his needs, in terms of the relationship with the 45 daughter not working and not being - and he is extremely bright - did volunteer work on a board and 46 worked developing all kinds of park land and nature walks and doing all that kind of stuff - sat on a 47 bank in the Commercial Drive area, a cooperative, and so he did all kinds of unpaid work but the 48 difficulty I had was not respecting him in terms of what he did specifically or didn't do for his child. 49 50 H: Earlier on you mentioned the word value and you grimaced when you said that - you talked about 51 your own value system and correct me because I'm just going to say what I'm hearing - You have a value 52 system that says your primary responsibility is towards the child and his value system was such that he 53 was not living up the the values as you saw them - so he had a different value system. 54 134 55 Leonard: Yah. Although he claimed that his sole interest was in his child the actual evidence of 56 behaviour seemed to contradict that and yes I think he and I had generally a different value system or 57 different approach to how we would deal with this problem. 58 59 H: What were vour feelings at that point? How did you feel? 60 61 Leonard: I felt, initially, several things I think. Frustrated in that when we would try to work at looking 62 at the issues he was very good at intellectualizing about why he had to take this moral position of not 63 working because he felt so manipulated by the former wife. The former wife's father was a judge. The 64 system - all these things - and at the same time I was feeling frustrated that the work we were doing 65 didn't seem to be progressing. And at the same time I was wondering well, part of the problem is this 66 lack - this contradiction in terms of what he was saying he valued and what he did. And I also felt kind 67 of frustrated from my own perspective 'cause I knew there was a difference in terms of the value system 68 that we held. 69 70 H: You say you were frustrated in terms of your own position? 71 72 Leonard: How helpful can I be. What should I do next and at the same time so frustrated from kind of a 73 professional perspective and at the same time frustrated - saying you know, your value system here is 74 part of what's screwing you up here. If you really were concerned about your child then you would go out 75 and get a job because you are quite capable of going out and getting a job. And when he initially came to 76 see me it was "I don't know what kind of a job I want to do." We quickly sorted that out and moved 77 quickly into re-establishing what it was that we were going to work on. He wasn't interested in career 78 counselling. It was personal counselling. So we were able to move very quickly to what the issue was -79 or what appeared to be the issue would be a better way of putting it. 80 81 H: Most of your feelings around that were frustration. 82 83 Leonard: And kind of the conflict I was feeling between how I personally felt about the issue and trying 84 not to influence what I did professionally. 85 86 H: What sorts of things did you tell yourself? 87 88 Leonard: That there is more than one point of view on this. That not everyone puts the same emphasis 89 on family that I do. That part of his difficulty was that he felt that as he was going through the legal 90 process - he did all kinds of bizarre things legally - he blamed his lawyer as being incompetent but the 91 lawyer would say but if you had a job then the court would view you as more credible. I would feel 92 frustrated with the same kind of issue. So what is it that you want. If you want custody then you have to 93 play the game. If you don't - He felt that he was on some kind of moral crusade and so what I had to 94 keep telling myself was first of all don't get locked into his moral crusade and continue to help point out 95 what the alternate perspective might be but also I had to keep telling myself not to have a reaction - to 96 say; just wait a minute just stop, give your head a shake. You're not thinking very clearly. I had to tell 97 myself well - that's not very respectful. I don't know if that answers your question. 98 99 H: Yah. That does. So you ended up doing what? 100 101 Leonard: Trying to set very specific concrete plans from week to week about how he was going to - first 102 how he was going to deal with his wife and his daughter and then also trying to frame the question with 103 him as to what choices you have. I mean, if you make this choice then what's the ramification in the 104 court. That if ultimately you lose complete access what are your choices? 105 106 H: You are trying to bring clarity to the situation. 107 108 Leonard: Yes - you can yes but everything to death but ultimately you do have choices to make and you 109 need to make them. And trying to keep me out of the middle of that. 110 135 111 H: You start of with feelings of frustration and recognizing the different value systems and you tell 112 yourself - I'm not going to react and "people have different value systems. Not everybody feels about 113 family as I do." Was there anything else you needed to do to put yourself in a position where you felt 114 more respectful towards this person. 115 116 Leonard: One of the things that I would have liked to have done was and I think it is one of the major 117 issues of private practice - is I would like to have sat down with someone - its easy when you are in 118 clinic or an agency is to say well - "Heather how do you think I'm doing. I did this, this, and this today. I 119 felt this, this, and this. Did I let my own stuff get in the way here?" 120 H: When you say "Did I let my own stuff get in the way" can you tell me more about how that relates to 121 being respectful? 122 123 Leonard: Because I would do it one way doesn't necessarily mean that you or he should do it that way. 124 And I think our role in counselling is to develop awareness in our clients so that they can ultimately 125 make the choices that they feel are best for them. I am very keen on not being directive. Saying you have 126 got to construct meaning for yourself and make your decisions based on that construction. And too often 127 blatant questions of "What do you think I should do Bruce?" I mean those are easy to avoid. It's the more 128 subtle situations that this guy was very clever at doing saying - he'd get into a very theoretical 129 description about why it's morally correct to take the stand he's doing, that he is being truthful to himself 130 by taking this stand and then subtly saying things like "Wouldn't I be dishonest to myself if I didn't 131 morally do what I thought was best?" He was really looking for my approval and sanctioning this kind of 132 behaviour and so I had to be on guard quite often not to become sucked into endorsing his behaviour one 133 way or the other. I could always tell when he felt that - in my own value system was to always say well, 134 you know, I'd do it differently. And so, I guess ultimately if we are going to frame it in terms of respect 135 it would be respecting his ability to develop awareness but calling him on all the games that he played 136 and not letting my stuff or my values or my perspective on the problem interfere with him developing 137 the perspective or insight that he needed to make in order to make the decision. Did I make myself 138 clear? 139 140 H: Very clear. And actually very concise. 141 Can you explain how you know when this is meaning for you. 142 143 Leonard: Lack of respect? 144 145 H: Yah. 146 147 Leonard: It actually its when I can feel my impatience. I can feel that kind of feeling in the pit of my 148 stomach or in my chest or you know you kind of get that a -1 feel uncomfortable with that. I don't like 149 that. That's not right. 150 151 H: Impatience and making a value judgment. Impatience - can you tell me more about what that 152 impatience means. What is that impatience for you? 153 154 Leonard: I want to kind of cut to the chase. Let's move past the process. I can see what the next step is, 155 can't you see that? Let's push on to that rather than let it unfold for the person as it should. 156 157 H: You mean you have some kind of agenda. 158 159 Leonard: Yah, yah exactly. 160 161 H: Then you want to follow your agenda and that's the thing that's disrespectful in a counselling 162 situation. 163 164 Leonard: Very actually. I have a tendency to want to - one of the things that I've finally learned is that -165 it seems like such a cliche but it is true - you can work for forty minutes going around and around, the 166 last 15 minutes seems to be the most important in terms of urgency to accomplishment. I've had to 136 167 really train myself to recognize that process of the counselling hour. That it would be so much nicer 168 to get that 15 minutes at the beginning (laugh). 169 170 H: And then keep it up all the way through - at that level of getting something done. 171 172 Leonard: Yah, exactly so it's that kind of example where I think I'm - I've learned to be respectful to a 173 client - that that's the process and as much as I would prefer to have 55 minutes at the same quality as 174 the last 15, it doesn't seem to work that way. 175 176 H: When you went through this process with this person you say at the beginning, recognizing -177 recognizing the values differences and recognizing the frustration and impatience and conflictiveness -178 perhaps not consciously but within your awareness - what would you have wanted at the end of that -179 like you were doing a process with yourself when you were doing your talking to yourself - what would 180 you have wanted at the end. What were you striving for? 181 182 Leonard: Let me get this clear. What was I striving for with the client or with myself? 183 184 H: With yourself. 185 186 Leonard: Um that I not that I the client not have a sense from me that ah I had any kind of agenda but 187 that that I really was the screen that was reflecting back to them. And so what they saw up there was 188 their agenda and their image of themselves reflected back to them rather than me. 189 190 H: So were you striving to have no agenda yourself or just striving to hide your agenda? 191 192 Leonard: You know I think, I think that we all all as difficult as it is we all have an agenda because we 193 all have values and we always have a perspective so I guess if I had to choose to have no agenda that 194 would be like you know like being completely self-actualized, right. I don't know if that's ever truly 195 possible. Um so I think its it's striving ta ta conceal my agenda so it doesn't influence the client. Well, 196 you know what I mean. I guess that means that ends up having an agenda. I guess concealing my, my 197 value system or my perspectives so it doesn't unduly influence them. 198 199 H: And in the long run would you be working toward that self-actualization? 200 201 Leonard: Yah, I think so. Yah um Yah cause III honestly believe that that the ultimately it's what 202 Rogers' talked well, maybe I shouldn't use that as an example -1 was going to talk about that whole 203 issue of congruence with Rogers. That that is the ultimate I think - is helping the client to be congruent, 204 you know. And and even even Carl Rogers talked about its difficult ah, not to I mean we are human 205 beings so we can't just completely shut down our value system or who we are but but we can act as that 206 screen so that the client can be more congruent. 207 208 H: And at the end with this client when you were ... when you were with them, how did you feel about -209 within yourself about you were able to deal with this? 210 211 Leonard: In in in the last session? 212 213 H: Yah, or say the last few or I mean presumably you are seeing this person over a period of time and 214 you're struggling with this all along. What were your feelings about the outcome? 215 216 Leonard: Um. That he'd done himself a disservice. 217 218 H: More about your process with yourself. What were your feelings about your process? 219 220 Leonard: Um That I was you know I guess ultimately because he'd made he'd lost complete 221 custody - and it was over and we had agreed when it was over - the court case he would be able to move 222 on and be able to make decisions. And ah he did but ... I guess from my own process I just felt that he, 137 223 he he never, I don't know how successful I was in helping him to develop the insight that he 224 required. And I guess again that's (unclear) sounds a lot like what I thought he required umm. So I 225 don't know. That's a good question actually. I feel a litte ambivalent about it. I think he recognized and 226 said all the right things. "I made these choices and I'm you know," that - and and the final session he'd 227 indicated he felt that the counselling had been very successful. But I didn't feel that way. But you 228 know... 229 230 H: How did you feel about just struggling with the respect - you started off recognizing and then as I say 231 you went through that process of talking to your self and struggling with that - How successful do you 232 think you were at that or maybe not even put it in terms of successful or not successful as in a judgment 233 but compared to what you felt when you first recognized that as an issue for you of needing to be 234 respectful and needing to set aside your agendas, your values - How did you feel about how you did in 235 the end. I mean what were your feelings in the end? Were they different from your feelings in the 236 beginning? 237 238 Leonard: I think because of the decisions he ultimately made, that um I had sufficiently respected his 23 9 ability to make poor decisions if that is not a contradiction I guess ah That um that struggling with that 240 and not letting him ah be overly influenced with that from my perspective I guess although I struggled 241 with that in every session with him and we, we must have had 25 or 30 sessions. Um I think ultimately I 242 didn't influence him based on my value system. 243 244 H: And so what are your feelings about that? 245 246 Leonard: Um, Well, I'm glad, I mean I'm glad I let him obviously make the decision for himself and I 247 think that is respectful in itself but you know it always gnaws at the back of me. Should have I done 248 something differently, should have I been more directive. Should have I said - No, you know this is not 249 really clear thinking, ah, you know this is what you need to do. But that actually violates what I believe 250 in so much that I you know but you just kind of think well if I could have just got him over the top a 251 little. Although I guess the question is, is he ever going to reach the top and get over the top, you know. 252 253 H: Um. That's how you felt about your success with counsellor, as therapist with him. (Leonard: As to 254 whether he.) H: yah as to what the outcome was for him and whether - how much success you feel as a 255 therapist in that - but within your self how much success do you feel in struggling with the respect 256 problem - just within yourself, nothing to do with him? 257 258 Leonard: Yah, Um actually, I feel pretty good about it because he was such a challenge, every week that 259 I had to ah - It was like saying - holding on to the chair and saying don't do it Bruce you know, don't do 260 it, don't get sucked in, right. Ah that ultimately after that many times of seeing him that um I do feel 261 pretty good about that in terms of ultimately inspecting his agenda wherever that went. 262 263 H: And when you held onto the chair and said don't do it -1 get a sense that there are really strong 264 feelings in that. 265 266 Leonard: Yah, don't be directive, don't, don't be paternalistic, don't you know, be there, act as the 267 screen let him see what's happening for him. Don't cross the line I guess is what I'm saying. 268 269 270 h. And what are you feeling when you are saying that. 271 272 Leonard: Even right now? 273 274 H: Yah, it sounds like you are right there. 275 276 Leonard: Yah um well very much like frustrated, you know: This is a very challenging client, um um 277 you know it's just hard work, you know. 278 138 279 H: When you hold on to the chair like that I get the sense that you are also holding onto a part of 280 yourself that wants to do something different, you know and just holding back. 281 282 Leonard: Yah, holding back you know like ah putting up the barrier so you know you can push up 283 against it but I am not going to go through, you know, yah. 284 285 H: A lot of self control. 286 287 Leonard: Yah, yah. Actually that's quite true. 288 289 H: Self awareness at the same time? 290 291 Leonard: Um yah (Doubtful) I guess um that's not how I would initially have described it but I guess one 292 would have to, its an ongoing development of self awareness after each session of a how successful was I 293 in keeping my, my value system out of the session. 294 295 H: See as I listen to the whole story I'm getting a sense that keeping your value system out of the session 296 was a major part of what you were doing with yourself in each of these sessions. 297 298 Leonard: Yah. I think that's quite true actually. Being very careful about how I worded things. The 299 kinds of questions I asked. How I framed different perspectives so that um it wasn't always clear 300 whether I was speaking about my perspective or society's perspective, or his wife's perspective - just 301 simply another perspective. 302 303 H: Very rich in information - that story 304 Is there anything else you'd like to tell me about that story that I haven't asked, before we move on to 305 another one. 306 307 Leonard: um Well maybe just that he'd phoned me back about three months later wanting to 308 resume counselling and I referred him to another counsellor ah because I felt that it was important that 309 ah he have ah and I said if it didn't work out give me a call back and I'll make another referral but you 310 have an opportunity to work with somebody and you know - 10, 20, 30 sessions that has a different style 311 than me or different technique than me. And so, um I don't know how that worked out actually. You 312 know, how clients um you kind of never sometimes you don't get the final story you know. So I assume 313 that ah um I don't know what he did with that. I don't even know if he went to see them or not. 314 315 316 H: Is there another? 317 318 Leonard: Story - with a client? 319 320 H: Not necessarily with a client - anyone that you - if you have a story (interruption from other tape 321 machine.) 322 Leonard: One was with um ... this is a really tough one because this is with a colleague ah It's one at 323 work where I'm going to be given the opportunity to be the coordinator or the department head of the 324 department. And um this woman has been there longer obviously that I have but she really is the kind of 325 individual I have no idea what she is doing in counselling um but ah virtually everyone in the 326 department has difficulty with her ah in terms of her attitude. She's very manipulative and ah and very 327 hierarchical. I'm I'm 11 - its the first thing that bothers me, right. I don't like this hierarchical business 328 you know I'm the boss and you're not. She's just - she would die to have this this this coordinating 329 position um because you know people can basically tell her you know -1 don't agree, good-bye right. It's 330 a little more difficult with a coordinator. So, um and also she has a degree. Her her graduate degree from 331 ah ah from Blaine. Ah so it is a non-accredited masters in my view. Um My counselling colleagues out 332 there are in conflict with her all the time. And ah an incident occurred where she ah had handed out 333 some information to a government representative about a student that was ah inappropriate and did not 334 follow policy and violated confidentiality - a whole whole bunch of things. The dean asked me to go and 139 335 sit with her and figure out what kind of letter we should draft up to this government agency pointing 336 out that their approach was inappropriate and that we didn't appreciate it etc. Um the very - we sat down 337 and and I was telling myself ah you know, it's important for even people that 11 don't put a great deal of 338 value on what they say um that she's a colleague and that I think one has to maintain professional 339 behaviour at all times/1 really, really object to people who don't have professional behaviour - whether 340 you like the person or not is irrelevant to me. Um but she opened the conversation with um ... Oh you 341 graduated from UBC. I said yes. And she said I think that program .. sucks. (Laughter,)I thought Oh 342 God, what (Laugh) what did I do wrong to deserve this. So 11 immediately felt a lot of hostility toward 343 her right. And um a lot of disrespect. And and feeling the same you know like that's pretty a pretty 344 disrespectful hostile thing to say right. And but I said you know Why do you feel that way? You know. 345 Well, They made me, they were going to make me when I applied there take and I could list the courses 3 4 6 362 and 365 right, and you know I refused to be involved in a program that that's Mickey mouse.-1 347 thought to myself Mickey Mouse I don't know about Mickey Mouse here. Anyway so ah when you and I 348 talked that was the very first image I had flash into my mind in terms of respect that I really ah didn't 349 feel very respectful of her. And you know the big issue for me is at what point do you maintain your 350 professional behaviour you know and you know it's important to me that respect and in quite a different 351 context than my client. But ah I think you know one needs to be assertive as well - saying that's not 352 that's not appropriate behaviour. So there's always that interesting kind of um dichotomy when it comes 353 to respecting others and being respected. I mean the difference between you know assertiveness and 354 aggressiveness and passiveness. What role does respect play in that? 355 356 H: That's my question. 357 358 Leonard: (laugh) You're right. Well, I think it's you know I don't I don't think it's being disrespectful 359 to say to her -1 think it's disrespectful if I start swearing at her. Ah I think that is to some degree you 360 know completely inappropriate. I don't think you should swear at people because they criticized the 361 program you graduated from. Ah at the time what I did was ah indicate to her that you know it's an 362 accredited program um. I'm a little surprised because you know there's a lot of people that that work 363 here and at other colleges and in private practice who who you know value the degree and it's valued by 364 others and ah I'm a little surprised to hear you be so confrontational right? And so she got the message 365 real quick and I mean I was there to help her put this letter together. Um and I you know I felt like I 366 should have if I am gonna respect myself I should have also said you know um that it's an odd thing to 367 start off with if I'm here to help you put this thing together after you did a really dumb thing. Um you 368 know. I don't know if that really answers the question about -1 guess it's quite different, quite different 369 um when it comes to respecting and being respected in a collegial way than it is with clients right. I 370 guess my approach is quite different. 371 372 H: You mentioned many things two of which sort of stand out for me that I would like to go inot more 373 and I'm sure a lot of the others too but these are the ones that stand out. The first one is the idea of 374 reciprocity of respect - that her initial action um in your eyes was disrespectful in challenging your 375 degree. 376 377 Leonard: My credentials, yah. 378 379 H: Um so it's sounded to me as though your initial response to that was to feel disrespect for her but 380 your actions were still being respectful and professional Am I right to say that what you were 381 disrespecting about her was her unprofessionalism? 382 383 Leonard: That. Her attitude um her thinking that this is an appropriate way to begin a professional 384 relationship and you know as I listen to you talk I'm wondering and I'd hate to muddy the waters here 385 but whether I would have reacted differently if it were a male colleague than if it were a female 386 colleague. Whether I - because I mean the whole issue of being assertive and saying hey what are you 387 doing - that's that's ... that's bull right. .um I wonder if I would have felt easier to do that to a male 388 colleague than I would to a female colleague. Thinking that I have to be -1 don't know what I think I 389 have to be really. 390 140 391 H: That's really interesting. So some choice of your actions - what you are going to do about the 392 situation might be different depending on gender. 393 394 Leonard: I think maybe, unfortunately. 395 396 H: But the initial sense of disrespect - would that have been any different with gender? 397 398 Leonard: No, I think not. Because it's the content of the conversation. I may have been more assertive, 399 more forceful saying "I don't buy that with a male" with a male that I would have taken the time with a 400 female colleague and making sure - cause in these in this day and age one has to be very careful about 401 how that is processed. And it kind of touches on the whole issue you know the difference between being 402 too passive and not assertive enough you know. Because I think that's important. You can't teach clients 403 and students that ah you know you should be assertive and you have the right to be assertive when you 404 don't practice that. 405 406 H: You're initial feeling of disrespect for this person when she said that to you were there any other 407 feelings that came up in that for you? 408 409 Leonard: Yah. I felt quite angry toward her. I felt angry that um it's unnecessary to begin a conversation 410 this way. It's unnecessary to be so confrontational, ah What appears to be on purpose to try to evoke 411 some kind of I assume some kind of response from me. Um either ah you know it's just I felt really 412 angry that this is her approach ah to begin. 413 414 H: And then in-between those feelings and your actions what sorts of things would you have been saying 415 tovourself? 416 417 Leonard: Well, um My initial reaction was to you know well, I'm leaving, good-bye.(laugh) Work this 418 out on your own if that is your attitude. Ah to you know calm down you know you you kind of I knew 419 going in that ah ah she had an attitude issue so I kind of had inoculated myself against that. Although I 420 have to admit when I started out I could feel my cheeks burning a little ah but I've but I've got lots of 421 experience in terms of dealing with aggressive people um so um I guess that's part of the the different 422 situation. I don't mind to deal with aggressive people in in other kinds of environments where you 423 expect to encounter them and I guess that's part of the anger and disrespect that I had is why would I 424 have to put up with that kind of stuff in in a so called professional environment in a college ah or 425 university where what's the point of this? 426 427 H: Sounds like a bit of surprise there? like ah... 428 429 Leonard: Not surprise because I knew her reputation but anger that that she thinks that that this is the 430 place to it. And also that like I mean good grief you know if you really want to get down and dirty you're 431 one of the least aggressive people I've ever encountered (little laugh) you know I mean. I guess that's 432 where that that anger kind of bubbles up as you know number one what's the point in - who are you 433 kidding right? Anyway, put that put that aside and and ah um ... try to be professional but the longer the 434 conversation we had the more ah she spoke, the less respect I had for her. Ah it was the kind of 435 conversation you have that when the end comes and you get to leave it's that God you know. So when it 436 came to -1 I guess when it came to keeping my stuff out of it I just simply said on the outside we'll do 437 this but internally in you know in the interior of what I think you're never going to know what I really 438 think ah ..and I'm never going to be able to respect you. 439 440 H: What is it .. .that you cannot respect? 441 442 Leonard: That she ah... .has such little value for others - for others perspective that that she really 443 believes that it is her point of view and her point of view alone that has any value. 444 445 H: And how does that relate to your value system. 446 141 447 Leonard: Well, That I think that we all need - we all view the world, we all experience the world 448 slightly differently or a lot differently but it's different and that we have to recognize that and and try to 449 compensate for that. I mean we don't have to I don't have to give up everything I believe in just because 450 somebody lives the complete opposite lifestyle than me but that doesn't necessarily mean that um.. I I'm 451 going to do and say things that, are going to detract from their sort of human humanness. 452 453 H: Detract from their humanness? 454 455 Leonard: Yah. Because we are all human beings, right? Which is what I really felt is what she did and 456 does to others as well is really detracts from being able to connect as human beings. That it is only her 457 perspective that is important. 458 459 H: But when you behave in such a way that you don't want to detract from her humanness - how would 460 you relate that way of being in the world to respect. 461 462 , Leonard: Well, actually I find that very difficult to do. My strategy simply is to um u - have as little to do 463 with her as possible and and um but ultimately if I'm if I'm the coordinator I'm going to have to deal 464 with this as an issue. And so ah what what I haven't done and I'm going to be forced to do is to sit down 465 with her and explain that you know if we're going to respect one another then this is the way it's gonna 466 the way we're going to have to be able to communicate. 467 That we don't behave and criticize and judge um without giving any kind of thought to the impact it 468 might have on someone else. And I, so I guess from my perspective if we are going to work together and 469 we are going to connect, we're going to have to have that discussion and if she can't um can't 470 accomplish that um then we are going to have to work out some other arrangement. 471 472 H: Is um accomplishing that - the that part - is ..that somehow aligning your values in in that particular 473 area? 474 475 Leonard: Yah I guess it is. ah and and one of the the values is that that the team members make a 476 contribution to the team and not detract from the team. And so that that's a value that I'm not prepared 477 to compromise on. That all the members of the team need to make a contribution and we can all sit 478 down and discuss how that and what that looks like. And come to some consensus but but the real strong 479 value I hold is that you can't take away from the team you have to make a contribution and if you can't 480 make the contribution then some other solution - other alternative has to be explored. 481 482 H: So in terms of respect then when ..within this context - within the fact that you are a 483 team and this is laid out as sort of the mandate of your job ...that there are certain ..there is a certain 484 expected conduct based on a value system that has to be adhered to and if someone wants to be in that 485 job and doesn't want to adhere to that then loses respect. 486 487 Leonard: Yes. 488 489 H: And that is different from the counselling situation because it has a different context. 490 491 Leonard: Exactly. And I have a different role. I think that ah my role in counselling is to develop 492 awareness for the client. My role as coordinator is to see that the team runs effectively. 493 494 H: And when you lost respect for that woman and again now this is just within yourself, not to do with 495 her now what is it that you want? 496 497 Leonard: um Well, what I lost basically is a team member or potential team member who can make a 498 contribution and also what I lost in terms of myself is the amount of energy that I am going to have to 499 invest um in order to determine whether or not she is going to be team player or not. And so ah you 500 know I'm I think we only have so much energy to go around. 501 502 H: Yah. So when you are in that space what sorts of feelings do you have? 142 503 504 Leonard: And the space being..? 505 506 H: Of having lost respect. And recognizing that you are going to lose that energy. 507 508 Leonard: um Kinda a sense of hopelessness. That ah you know I gotta sit down now and figure out how 509 I'm going to get to do this process and it's it's not coming to me instantly and so ah you know ah a 510 sense of kind of I mean not extreme hopelessness but just hopeless in oh I've got ta I can't think of what 511 I'm gonna have to do. I know I have to do something. I know I'm going to have to put effort into this. 512 Ah gee 11 I'd rather not. Would would have been a lot better if this hadn't occurred. 513 514 H: Almost a kind of unwillingness (unclear) 515 516 Leonard: Yah yah yah 517 518 H: And at the beginning when you when you had a response to her reaction of um this shouldn't happen. 519 You know you don't expect this to happen in a professional environment. 520 521 Leonard: It's unnecessary! 522 523 H: It's unnecessary its a little bit the feeling that even at the end I sense also in having to go through this 524 process is that - I'm not sure what the name of that feeling is - it's unnecessary . This is unnecessary... 525 526 Leonard: Well, just that sense of hopelessness. That's what I think of immediately like it's a sort of a 527 hopeless situation. 528 529 H: So there is a sense of reciprocity when you are dealing with peers? 530 531 Leonard: An expectation on my part? 532 533 H: Yah (unclear) for respect (Leonard: Yah yah) H: That there there's at some point ah respect must be 534 mutual? 535 536 Leonard: Yes. That's part of what a professional is that you have a professional opinion. We don't 537 always share that but I think we need to respect that we are going to have a professional opinion and 538 then whether that's different or the same it's still professional. 539 540 H: So can you tell me more about that. Like if you - if she had just come out with a different opinion 541 then what is the difference about what she said than than this dynamic you just described. 542 543 Leonard: Well, I don't think that what she described was professional, um I think um saying that the 544 UBC program, I mean the evidence is otherwise. It's accredited it it I mean there's I don't know 200 545 applications a year or whatever it is. Um her degree is non-accredited. You know people take it as a 546 third and fourth and fifth resort um so the facts don't match her her professional opinion. I mean it's not 547 a professional opinion it's obviously a personal opinion based on a whole lot of stuff that she either 548 didn't get accepted here or whatever the issue was right. So there is a difference between having a 549 professional opinion i.e. I think this client needs to take this course of action and I think well yah that 550 might be but here's another alternative to that. Those are professional opinions as opposed to what she 551 she pawned off as a professional opinion really is a personal opinion, So that's how I distinguish those 552 two. 553 554 H: When you are talking about professional opinions is sounds as though it's very similar to what you 555 were talking about with your client in that somebody can have a different value system and (Leonard: 556 um hum) from you and you can still put your value system to one side and listen to their point of view 557 and take from that what you what you will or not (Leonard: um hum, um hum 558 143 559 Leonard: Rght. 560 561 H: But you can still hear that point of view. 562 563 Leonard: That's right but when its really a personal opinion that's sort of masquerading as a 564 professional opinion that's really and I think that's part of the the loss of respect you know you're you're 565 deluding yourself into thinking that I believe that that is a professional opinion. 566 567 H: So the dishonesty of the comment (B yes) H: then has leads to the disrespect Leonard: yah leads to 568 the disrespect. 569 570 H: the other, the other issue that that um you just mentioned the word and I'd like to hear more 571 about it is that was the role of self respect in ... in in order to respect others. 572 573 Leonard: Yah I think um and it it it kinda maybe goes along with that discussion we just had on 574 professional um opinions I think that you have if you know you always have the fine line between 575 assertive-passive assertive-aggressive and I think that we all need to be assertive ah and that um when 576 we are not assertive we lose respect for ourselves. And when we don't voice our opinion professionally 577 or don't act professionally or condone unprofessional behaviour that when we don't confront it we we 578 lose respect for ourselves because we know - at least I know I mean - um I can see that that's not 579 professional and if I don't address that issue then what does that say about me in terms of respecting 580 myself. So I think you have to have self respect if you are going to respect others as well. Otherwise if I 581 just respect you and I don't respect myself there is something wrong with that equation. I mean there's 582 no chance for reciprocity is there? How could you respect me if I didn't respect myself? 583 584 H: hum. That's really interesting yah 585 Okay. I've kind of gone off track here Um Yah this this is a question that is connected with that and 586 that is um what connection do you see if any between respect and boundaries in the sense of ... 587 588 Leonard: III It's big, big connection in my view. I think that if you don't have very clear boundaries for 589 people they have no sense - well, no sense is maybe too strong but there there it's difficult ah to establish 590 respect. If you can say and do anything to me, how's that - at what point does respect begin or when 591 does it stop. So here's my boundary and ah and ah if those boundaries are really clear ah they you can 592 respect the boundaries and I can feel the self respect that's required so I think boundaries play a huge 593 role in respect. And I've I've noticed when I work with clients that don't have very good boundaries that 594 respect ah seems to be ah a big issue for them. And so I don't see that would be any reason and different 595 for in a professional relationship or in a counselling relationship. Boundaries happen all the time. 596 597 H: What part of or what are the qualities of boundaries do you think are important to this issue. 598 599 Leonard: When you say quality of boundaries? 600 601 H: We were talking about boundaries I guess - maybe what I should ask you to do is define boundary for 602 me so that -1 know what I mean by it but I am not sure if our meanings are the same so if you could just 603 give me an idea of what you mean by that. 604 605 Leonard: A boundary for example - when I'm working um with a client is that ah as best as I can 606 manage it ah they know that what ah is is said in the session is completely confidential, ah ah unless of 607 course, it doesn't meet the ethical standard of hurting themselves etceteras , right. Ah and so that's a 608 very clear boundary. Um another clear boundary that I draw particularly is that I don't think that any of 609 my female clients - it would be a very interesting study to actually run - I'd be very interested to have a 610 sense of that - but I don't think a single one of my female clients would would would ever - you could go 611 and ask them and say Now is there ever a chance that Bruce would ever become involved with them 612 sexually." And I think that they would say categorically No. That they have a really strong sense that 613 that's such a strong boundary that there isn't a single circumstance that would arise that that would ever 614 happen. And so that's what I mean by boundary. 144 615 616 H: um hum. And what about with this woman - like you told me the story you talked about - the degree 617 from Blaine -618 619 Leonard: And what is an example of a boundary? 620 621 H: In the context of boundaries there. 622 623 Leonard: Well, one boundary that I have is that I am not going to slip into unprofessional conduct. And 624 say you know, you're really a stupid SOB you know, don't waste my time. That's a boundary that I hold 625 no matter ... 626 627 Leonard: So part of your disrespect for her was that she was not holding that boundary? 628 629 Leonard: Yah, that's a good - yah, yah that's true I think. Yah, that's true. I hadn't quite thought of it 630 that way but that that that's quite true, yah. 631 632 H: In that instance and I'm not going to ask if you can generalize past this - if you're value system says 633 that certain boundaries should be in place and other people are not able to keep those boundaries in 634 place is that then part of the nature of losing respect or having respect? 635 636 Leonard: I think so yes. 637 638 H: It seems in that situation that's true. You cast your mind over a few... can you generalize from it. 639 640 Leonard: Yah. I think so. I think that if people can't hold their their boundary in place um .... for 641 example let me give you a clear example, um (interruption from other tape recorder) This is a per -(do 642 you need to put another tape in H, No ) This this is this is a value that I hold. And that is I don't think 643 that people and I know this is is pretty strong value but in terms of boundaries but I don't think that it is 644 an ethical practice for counsellors who are using drugs themselves to be counselling clients who are 645 using drugs in terms of trying to solve that as an issue. And so if they can't hold that boundary, even 646 smoking grass I mean ah cause you know that that's they're not holding the boundary very well. How 647 can you possibly work with with clients. In my view, if if that boundary isn't in place. It's it's like in my 648 view you bring in a a bottle of whiskey and a client who is alcoholic and you start drinking with him 649 (laugh). I mean, you don't necessarily smoke dope with them but I mean it's the same kinda stuff. At 650 least in my view. So that's someone who I would lose respect for if they were unable to hold that 651 boundary. 652 653 Turned over tape. 654 655 H: Even though I know it is quite prevalent amongst counsellors. Um 656 657 H: Okay. Um This is a little bit related to the idea of self respect, It's um what is the connection of 658 respect and your concept of yourself. 659 660 Leonard: Could you repeat that again. 661 662 H, What is the relation for you between respect and your self concept. 663 664 Leonard: ... Soo, So How does my respecting others relate to my self concept? ... Um That's quite a 665 difficult question actually. Um I guess my self concept um ah that that's a tough one actually .. ah ah 666 I guess, to answer it would be that um how I view myself and how I interact with others I guess. Um .... 667 I guess when my self concept is that when I'm in a situation where I feel quite confident um then the 668 issue of respect isn't as big a one. When I'm in a situation where I feel more vulnerable then I guess that 669 issue of reciprocity of respect kind of ah is ah well ah "I respect Heather but I'm feeling a little 670 vulnerable. I'm wondering how she respects me." Might might be different. 145 671 672 H. There are two things in here for me that are really interesting and one is um um ... 673 humram when you're feeling confident then are you telling me that you find it easier to be 674 respectful? 675 676 Leonard: Yes, yes. 677 678 Leonard: And when you are feeling vulnerable ... you're a little more concerned about whether others 679 are respecting you? 680 681 Leonard: um hum, um hum 682 683 H: And in that one in that I I'm wondering also about the tie in with self respect then. 684 685 Leonard: Yah. I guess self respect and self concept you know. The the higher your self concept the more 686 self respect you have, I would think. 687 688 H: And what do you mean by 'higher your self concept.' 689 690 Leonard: Well, the more integrated you are the more self confident you are and so the more self respect 691 you would have. And I guess it's that when you become less integrated you tend to have less confidence 692 and you tend not to respect yourself or respect your instincts or all those things that go along with self 693 respect. 694 695 H: What does more integrated meant to you? 696 697 Leonard: Um where you have more of a balance in terms of um the pull between ah looking at other 698 people's point of view and the point of view that you hold, um That whole psychodynamic um 699 interpretation of integration you know the balance between the you know, the super ego and the id and 700 that kind of integration process. The self awareness. The more self aware you are the more integrated 701 you become. That whole issue of congruence. The more congruent you feel the more integrated you are. 702 703 H: Does that bring in your idea of self actualization? Then the more you move toward self actualization? 704 705 Leonard: The more integrated... 706 707 H: The more integrated you are and the more respectful you become - even in difficult situations. 708 709 Leonard: Um hum Yes. Very well put. 710 711 H: Even if you were feeling very vulnerable? 712 713 Leonard: um hum 714 715 H: Or you would be feeling less vulnerable or you wouldn't mind feeling vulnerable. 716 717 Leonard: That that's right. Or you could take on situations that were newer to you that normally you 718 would feel very vulnerable and not sure whether you can do ah ah and the more integrated you are - this 719 may be a new experience but but based on on who you are and how you've handled things in the past 720 you have enough confidence that you can handle this as well. 721 722 H: um hum Even if it doesn't work out well? 723 724 Leonard: Exactly. It's not the end of the world if it doesn't. 725 726 H: um hum, um hum Um What would you consider to be the opposite of respect? 146 727 728 Leonard: Um.. That whole issue that came up the other day in terms of sadism - torturing other 729 people you know. Not respecting them. Being sadistic toward them 730 731 H: Can you, can you phrase that in ah using boundaries - using the concept of boundaries? 732 733 Leonard: That you simply have - that ah lack of respect is is is not respecting other boundaries. Or or 734 acknowledging any boundaries or having any boundaries I suppose for yourself. Um , ah it's it's it's that 735 disrespect for those boundaries. 736 737 H: Um How would you define respect? 738 739 Leonard: That you are able to ah suspend judgment for sufficient amount of time to be able to let the 740 other person finish what they are saying and then try to integrate that. I think that's the ultimate goal is 741 learning that skill or developing that respect to at least let the person finish what they're what they're 742 thought is. 743 744 H: And what what when that's happening do you have any requirements about how you listen to that 745 thought? 746 747 Leonard: As attentively as I can. With as little judgment as I can. You know, you know the practice that 748 we all is as soon as the person begins to speak we no longer hear what they are saying we are already 749 formulating our response and that I um is my definition of non-respect. Obviously is the opposite of 750 respect when we don't let the person at least finish what their thought is. 751 752 H: So, it's not just a matter of not talking while they're talking but also a matter of keeping your mind 753 open to what they are saying and not having your own thoughts happen. 754 755 Leonard: Yah. As difficult as that is. 756 757 H: Yah 758 759 Leonard:Yah. 760 761 H: I'm I'm trying to fit that definition with your with your experience with the woman. And that even 762 though you let her say what she wanted to say and you could maybe have some sense of where she might 763 have been coming from with that you still felt disrespectful but you were being respectful. No, I don't 764 know that seems hard for me. 765 766 Leonard: Yah um (H: So I'm wondering how that fits in. Is that another part for you - difference for you 767 - different kind of... ?) Yah I let her finish what she was saying, struggling very hard with what she was 768 saying but um I didn't react half way through and say "Stop! Enough! BS! You know that's completely 769 wrong." um 770 771 H: So in that sense you were being respectful? 772 773 Leonard: Right. Although ultimately I lost respect for her because of what we talked about earlier. 774 775 H: And how does that kind of loss of respect fit in with that definition that you just told me. 776 777 Leonard: Oh, 11 think that that when we 're being disrespectful to people is when we don't give them 778 the opportunity for us to respect them so they they speak we listen attentively. That doesn't necessarily 779 mean that I have to agree. (H: No ) And and based on what she says - ah I listen to it. I've given her the 780 opportunity to establish credibility or respect ah she hasn't so I lose respect 781 782 147 783 H: I've seen that in in your definition and in your experience with your client that being respectful 784 within yourself has to do with appearing internal mechanism. That you were trying to be respectful to 785 that client regardless of what choices he (Leonard: um hum) ended up making. Which you may or may 786 not have agreed with. But with your colleague it seemed as though in order to respect the colleague, the 787 colleague needed to have some particular attribute in order to be respected in that she - you lost respect 788 for her - what did you say just a minute ago - she she wasn't credible. 789 790 Leonard: Right. That the attribute in order - that's actually very good -1 hadn't thought about it that 791 way but that's true. The attribute that the person has to have in a collegial way is they have to have 792 credibility with me. And I give them the opportunity to establish credibility and and and I know that 793 sounds -1 don't mean it to sound quite that harsh. 794 795 H: No. You've made it really clear I think. 796 797 Leonard: Um Yah. And so if you don't have credibility then I can't respect you. 798 799 H: You have two two different kinds of respect then in a in a that's why it's a very nebulous word 800 (Leonard: laugh)that in in a situation with a colleague perhaps generalizable to peers in general 801 (Leonard: um hum) ah there is an element of reciprocity being required and there is also this element of 802 needing to earn needing to (Leonard: establish) establish a certain level of .. whatever it is that you are 803 valuing in your system in order to have respect. Whereas with the client (Leonard: It's quite different.) 804 The situation of being respectful is something that is just in internal. And the client doesn't have to be 805 this, that or the other in order for you to respect them. 806 807 Leonard: That's right. I think that's ultimately that's what I try for. 808 809 H: um hum Do you have any... .any What connection is there if any for you between your 810 concept of respect and any philosophical or spiritual background that you have that that informs your 811 value system? 812 813 Leonard: Ah I guess it goes back to establishing respect. I've worked with clients who um were racist or 814 homophobic or um just generally disagreeable people. And I find it much more difficult to work with 815 that um.. situation because it kind of pushes my buttons quicker. And so I guess in terms of my 816 spirituality or basic principles of you know the sense of um - not that we are all created equal because I 817 am not sure that that's necessarily true. Um we all have different abilities and different interests and etc. 818 etc. that make us different but I think we ..ah you know simply ah putting up systemic barriers or or 819 attitudes that cause disrespect you know a basic tenet that I that I find disagreeable. You know, that we 820 need to um have some kind of minimum base line of respect and if you drop below that then then you're 821 kind of an individual that I'm just having a whole lot of difficulty dealing with. That's kind of - my 822 basic principle is there are some minimum standards that we have to meet. 823 824 H: I guess. That's really interesting actually. It wasn't what I was wanting to ask which is fine because it 825 was really interesting. But what I was really trying to get at was ah you know in the formation of your 826 values in your childhood or in your life you have a system like Christianity or um you follow a certain 827 philosophy from somewhere or something that is that is maybe it would help to say - the other question 828 that goes along with this one is - How did you develop your concept of respect? Where did it come from? 829 830 Leonard: Two places. It came from the church and I was raised an Anglican and it was you know the the 831 priest of the church that I went to had a big influence on my life in terms of ah his ah he was the most 832 inept person socially ah very odd thing though when he would go up to lead a service he truly was 833 transformed. It ..um... .so his philosophy about how others should be treated had an impact on me. And 834 my own parents had a tremendous impact on how I my world view - how people should be treated - with 835 fairness. 836 837 H: Yah...and and in this ah within the Christian religion with which I am quite familiar um very 838 familiar - Is there any connection between those teachings for you and the concept of self actualization? 148 839 840 Leonard: That - yes that I suppose the one link would be that ah ah in order to self actualize, one 841 needs to learn to put aside -1 mean as best we can - ah greed and you know violence and all those kind 842 of things that ah I think are taught and I think the self actualized person um overcomes those. If one 843 ever self actualizes. 844 845 H: Just as one strives to become more like Jesus. 846 847 Leonard: Yah, Yah. 848 849 H: So do you see those paths being similar? 850 851 Leonard: Which paths? 852 853 H: The the Christian path to become one with God and more like - well through following the example 854 of Jesus and following the path toward self actualization. 855 856 Leonard: Yah, yah. I do see them as similar, um Mostly because III think people tend to portray Jesus 857 as an individual who never lost his temper, or didn't make errors in judgment and those kinds of things 858 you know. That people tend to tend to very much um put in a situation where he is you know perfection 859 or self actualization. In fact I think that's not quite true. That ah - he lost his temper and ah you know. 860 So anyway yah I do. I see those things as being very similar. 861 862 H: The same? 863 864 Leonard: umm (H: or the goal be perhaps?) Yah the goal perhaps. I think the process can be different. 865 866 H: Yes. (Leonard: yes) Yes I guess that's what what I was - because earlier in our conversation you 867 talked about if one becomes more self actualized that one becomes more respectful. (Leonard: um hum) 868 And that the farther along you are on that the the more respectful you can be in a broader range of 869 situations and with a broader range of people? 870 871 Leonard: Yah, yah 872 873 H: And so the beginnings of that growing for you seems to have happened with your experience with 874 this priest and and (Leonard: and my parents) through the church and the teachings of the church and 875 and your parents. 876 877 Leonard: yah um hum 878 879 H: Who emphasized fairness? 880 881 Leonard: And doing the right thing. 882 883 H: And do you see over over a period of -1 don't know how ever long you'd like to look at - but a 884 development in your ability to be respectful. 885 886 Leonard: You mean starting now or or just a ... 887 888 H: No starting when how ever far back in your life you would like to go from where maybe that concept 889 was first um an awareness that you had of being something to do. 890 891 Leonard: Yah 11 think certainly I feel much more development particularly in the last ah um say 15 892 years. And I think part of that is having had children, um where one has the opportunity to really 893 practice respect. Where as parents we ah have great - enormous opportunities to um ah um you know to 894 enforce our belief system. And at the same time you know, we're charged with raising them or giving 149 895 them instruction, you know that's how I see parenting as a as very much a duel role of ah respecting 896 your children's individuality at the same time providing instruction. You know. It's a difficult task 897 sometimes, (laugh) 898 899 H: (laugh) Yah, yah. And I really agree with you that it's ah definitely for me (unclear) 900 901 Leonard: Yah and in terms of ah done with that self control mechanism - learning to um particularly 902 now when you haven't gone through it as I do with an adolescent female - girl - woman sort of 903 combination um just sometimes feeling quite aah bewildered as to what actually I should be saying next 904 ah and trying to ah respect all that you know? 905 906 H: I think that it's very difficult with different gendered children. (Leonard: Yah) at that particular point 907 in time because I have the same difficulty especially with my oldest son that with all three of my sons 908 because I do not understand what they are going through from my own experience. (Leonard: um hum) I 909 mean when my daughter went through that I mean I had -1 knew what it was like for me inside. 910 (Leonard: yah) I had more of a sense of what was running around in their body as far as hormones and 911 you know mood swings and fears and (Leonard: yah and.) and aspirations and when those happen and 912 what they look like but for my sons it was trying to you know I had to learn the whole thing from the 913 outside and there was of course some things are universal beyond gender but a lot of it is puberty. 914 Because you're developing sexuality... 915 916 Leonard: Exacflv and ah 917 918 H: You don't have it 919 920 Leonard: Ah yah and how they treat one another. How adolescent females treat one another -1 thought 921 that adolescent males were vicious. Ah there's no physical violence with these these young girls but I 922 have to admit I'm astounded at how vicious they can be toward one another. (H: wicked) I said to my 923 daughter last night I said geez at least when 11 was fourteen we would know slap one another around a 924 little then go all together go play soccer or baseball right but ah that's ah I mean I know we are a little 925 off the mark here but III just sometimes wonder what's going on here. I don't understand this process 926 at all. (laugh) But that's because I come from an all male family too. I had no sisters - alllll brothers. 927 928 H: So this is really new to you. 929 930 Leonard: It is fairly new in terms of the behaviours - the adolescent female behaviours are um it's quite a 931 different matter to read about them and experience them, (laugh) 150 •1 Transcript # 6, Irene 2 3 H. I'm doing a study on the experience of respect in situations where a person wants to be respectful but 4 initially they're not able to be as respectful as they want to be. And people in the helping professions are 5 told to be respectful - It's one of the basic things we're always being told what to do and sometimes this 6 seems to be intangible - what does that mean? - how does that play out? and perhaps even sometimes 7 impossible to be respectful as we would like. So what I want is to hear some experiences from recent 8 experiences that you had where you've had to consciously make an effort to be respectful, so that it will 9 help us get a sense of what it means to be respectful. I think we could start with an experience. 10 11 Irene: Okay. Would you like it to be a work experience? 12 13 H. Yes, a work experience would be fine (Irene: preferable) and one of the things that I want to ask you 14 is whether it's different if it is a work experience than if it is a personal experience so ... 15 16 Irene: I recently was ... I should explain a little bit about my job. Half of the week I'm assigned to a 17 school and I'm that school's counsellor and the other half of the week I do crisis work. We have about 18 fourteen elementary schools with no counsellor in our district. And they can access counsellors on a 19 crisis basis if there's something that they really feel a counsellor needs to be involved in. And several 20 weeks ago I got a call from my supervisor asking me to go a certain school, contact the principal because 21 they had a crisis there. And when I spoke to him it was about a little girl that had become school phobic 22 and was crying and sobbing when it was time to go into her classroom. And she was in grade three and 23 she hadn't shown this behaviour before - it was new behaviour and they were very alarmed and it was 24 very unsettling for the teacher to have this child crying and screaming and at one occasion they had to 25 forcibly pull her away from her mom and directed her towards her desk and the mother was a mom that 26 was very involved in school activities and was beseeching the principal for some help. How can this be 27 handled? So he asked - because he'd gone through my supervisor and she asked me if I would contact 28 him and I contacted the mother and agreed to see them as soon as I could. And when I got working with 29 the mom -1 met with the mom before I met with the daughter to try and get a sense of what might be 30 happening and after a few moments I found myself getting a little angry because this seemed to be a 31 family with a great deal of affluence and privilege and while I realized this was a big problem for the 32 mom and for the daughter when I put it in relationship or when I compared it with some of the other 33 things I was dealing with it seemed that it wasn't as painful a problem and I felt - you can't judge other 34 peoples pain or upset but this has been a year when we've had several deaths of parents of out students 3 5 and we've had deaths of siblings and we've had a family where there was a suicide of a teenage girl and 36 we have a stack of about twenty or thirty referrals that we try to get to as soon as possible and I felt like 37 this family had sort of jumped the queue because the mom was on the executive of the parent's advisory 38 committee and one of the moms that's in and out of the school all the time helping with things and my 39 initial reaction was - "This isn't fair, I'm sad this is happening to this little girl and they're having 40 tough mornings," but at the same time why do these people have the right to have this attended to 41 immediately because mom has gone on a personal basis to the principal, who's gone on a personal basis 42 to my supervisor, who's suggested that I go and work with this family. 43 44 H. So you're feelings were of frustration? 45 46 Irene: I didn't do this to the family but inside I felt like saying "Let me tell you some of the other people 47 I've talked to this week. Let me tell you what's happening in some other houses." 48 49 H. When you say that to somebody - when you want to say that - what's going on in your mind - what 50 are you feeling? 51 52 Irene: I'm feeling like ... you have taken something and blown it out of proportion and have identified it 53 as a crisis ...(H. So it's anger) but if you knew what (H. your feeling is anger) 54 I guess yah anger, anger that they're not aware of what other people are coping with and that they are 55 used to everything being very smooth and very perfect in their life and if there's a problem it needs to be 56 addressed immediately. That they have this right to have things attended to right away. 151 57 58 H. So there's a sense of justice involved there? That people take their proper turn. That they don't jump 59 the queue. (Irene: yes) Part of what your feelings are there is that there hasn't - that there is something 60 not fair about it - something's not just. 61 62 Irene: Yes! And I guess also a sense that some people are very insulated from what reality is for other 63 families. There's a part of me that says "That's not mine to judge." That I don't I have no idea how 64 problems are affecting people and if they are upset and their children are upset they want something 65 done about it. But I guess because the school I work in half time is in a low income area I see people 66 really struggling with things and they don't know how to get access to services right away. They don't 67 have that kind of power. 68 69 H. So in this situation what did you end up doing? 70 71 Irene: I ended up working with the family and working with the little girl and I think I saw her for about 72 five sessions. And the mom I spent almost as much time as I did with the child. But I had to really talk 73 to myself before I met with mom and try and get rid of my negative feelings. 74 75 H. So how did you do that? 76 77 Irene: I really tried to stay non-judgmental and I was able to realize that ...mom was (I hate this) term 78 but she was pushing a lot of my buttons - there were a lot of things about mom and her attitude and her 79 lifestyle that I saw of being positions of privilege. And I had to be very very careful not to be critical of 80 mom. And I had - And I needed to give her information about the anxiety that she was transmitting to 81 her child because that's how I perceived the relationship between her daughter and her. And I had to be 82 very careful how I delivered this information to mom in a non threatening, non-judgmental was because 83 my own personal - if I was totally - if I hadn't been a counsellor, if I had been a neighbour of this person 84 and she asked me for advice I would probably have said "Well, you know, you spoil that kid rotten and 85 you've got nothing else to worry about and you're putting way too much energy and attention on this 86 poor kid and why don't you go find something to do." That's the -that would have been my gut reaction 87 to this woman. And as a counsellor of course, you can't do that. 88 89 H. So, as a counsellor what do you have to do with those ideas and those feelings? 90 91 Irene: I had to be aware of them and aware of my own personal biases against this woman and the way 92 that she had chosen to be a mother and live her life. 93 94 H. Can you say more about those biases? Is this the same as pushing your buttons? 95 96 Irene: Yes, yah (H. Can you tell me more about that - what those are?) I have, I have strong personal 97 feelings about helping your daughters to grow up to be strong capable young women and that as mothers 98 we have to help our daughters, our sons also, but we need to especially help our daughters to do that. 99 100 H. And then am I reading you correctly -1 hear that this other woman didn't share that value system 101 with you? 102 103 Irene: It didn't appear that way (H. it didn't appear that she did.) In fact she verbalized the feeling that 104 she like - she was really sad that her daughter was growing up and she'd really like her to stay little. 105 And she didn't know what she was going to do when her daughter didn't need her. I felt myself getting 106 impatient that she was visiting her anxieties on her little girl. 107 108 H. So we have here the situation where you're having difficulty respecting this person. This person has 109 different values about bringing up her child than you do. (Irene: Yes!) Can you say more about how that 110 - in a different value system - how that plays out for you as you are working towards being respectful? 111 152 112 Irene: I had to really keep getting rid of the word should which coming into my mind. When I 113 would look at this woman and she's tell me about some aspect of her life I could hear, I could feel all 114 these shoulds coming in there like "You should get something else to do." and "You should let your 115 daughter walk to school by herself." and "You should let go a little bit." and so I was actively ... when 116 that happened, when I felt these shoulds coming there I was very careful not to express them. 117 118 H. And what did you do with them? Apart from just not express them. What happened there? When you 119 didn't express them what came at that stage? 120 121 Irene: (pause) I felt myself flipping back and forth between being - between having the child as my client 122 and the Mom as my client and even thought I didn't, I'm not even sure if I had permission to treat Mom 123 as if she were my client and I never spoke to her as if she were. I tried to treat her as carefully as I would 124 - as if she had come to me as her counsellor. So I tried to think of ways of reflecting back to her or 125 carrying one of her ideas a little further and gently probing and really trying to help her see what was 126 happening so that she could feel it and express it in her own words and not just give her a little mini 127 lecture on how I thought she could be a better Mom. 128 129 H. Is it correct for me to say then that part of being respectful is setting aside your own values and trying 130 to let the mother's story - the mother see herself? 131 132 Irene: It was in this case. And I wouldn't always do that if (pause) - because my primary role is being a 133 counsellor and an advocate for children. So if I felt - That's an interesting question because I'm thinking 134 -1 felt like somebody was doing something that was quite physically abusive to their child I would 135 probably be much more directive with the parent. But in this case because I felt such (pause) - It's 136 interesting that you used the word anger because I hadn't thought of that - She seemed to me like a 137 throw-back to a Mom from the 40's or 50's an anachronism, you know, that's not how we raise our kinds 138 anymore. We don't live our lives through our kids and she was in a position where her husband made 139 enough money that she was able to stay home and be a full time mother and homemaker. And it seemed 140 to me that an incredible amount of energy was being visited on this little girl. And because 1 was so 141 aware that that was not my version of how you should bring up your children. And I think I'm a fairly 142 tolerant person but this just hit a blank spot with me. I was quite dismayed that -1 could almost see the 143 burden of all the Mom's anxiety and energies being carried by this little 8 year old girl. And (H. Like 144 being a trigger) It triggered more for me and I can visit homes where there's very little parenting going 145 on and there's very few resources and I have not been - felt that trigger of dismay at a parent that "Hey, 146 you don't do this with your kid." So I was surprised at my own reaction. I had such a powerful reaction 147 to this. Yah. 148 149 H. I'd like to just go back - a minute ago you said that if you felt a child was in - being abused by the 150 parent that you would take a more directive approach and I wonder how that fits in with you about being 151 respectful? 152 153 Irene: I think in that case I'm not as aware of the parent. I don't consider the parent as my client and I 154 don't feel like I have to protect the parent or sit with them for a half hour and coax out the idea from that 155 what they are doing for their child is not the best. So, I'm usually quite clear that the child is my client 156 and I need to enlist the help of the parent or talk to the parent or ally with them to try and do things 157 differently for this child. 158 159 H. You are basically being advocate for the child? 160 161 Irene: Yes. But in this case with the dynamic between the mother and the daughter I felt like I need to 162 do - if I had been directive with mom it would have - Mom would have got more anxious, which would 163 have made the child more anxious. So I was very aware of the best way that I can help this child is to do 164 some soul searching with Mom and try and get Mom to see things a little differently. 165 166 H. And so to be respectful then to the mother. 167 153 168 Irene: Yes. 169 170 H. And put your values aside? 171 172 Irene: No. 173 174 H. Didn't change them but maybe just... 175 176 Irene: I tried not to bring them in the room. 177 178 H. I guess that's what I mean - you just put them aside. 179 180 Irene: Yah. And tried to probe with her the origins of this deep involvement in her daughter's emotional 181 life where she was really living vicariously through her daughter in some aspects of life. (Pause) Yah. 182 And treating Mom - being very very delicate in my treatment with Mom. This whole sense of fragility of 183 Mom and daughter. 184 185 H. That's good. That's a really clear example. I wonder if you can remember another time? 186 187 Irene: (pause) I was asked to come in on a crisis basis to work with a grade 7 girl who had come new to 188 school. Nobody knew much about her. And the presenting problem was she had come into the school 189 and she was getting into a lot of verbal and physical fights with other kids in her grade and the school 190 was quite alarmed at this and they asked if I would meet with this girl. I read a little bit about her history 191 before I met with her and talked with her teacher to get some ideas. And this child on several occasions 192 when I went to meet with her she was absent. This was another incidence where I'm not at the school 193 regularly. I just get called in on a per case basis. So, I read the child's file and read that in seven years 194 she had attended about 7 or 8 different schools. And I talked to the teacher and the teacher described her 195 as being a very overweight, sullen girl that had a chip on her shoulder and then these absences - she was 196 often late for school or didn't come to school, or she'd come late and go home for lunch and not return. I 197 was getting a little annoyed and I left several messages on the machine for Mom. "Could Mom let me 198 know when would be a good time to call." Every time I called I just got the answering machine and I got 199 the feeling like it was a family where the answering machine is just left on all the time and they just pick 200 up the phone if they feel like talking. So I felt like there was a lot of avoidance by the family. And a 201 reluctance to discuss the fact that this girl was having these problems with fighting. I finally met with 202 the girl. I had this preconceived picture of what it was all about. Here's a kid that's from a family that's 203 not very into school. They haven't really bought into school. They are not really concerned about dealing 204 with this girls difficulty. I guess my disrespect was more for her family. I was a little annoyed that Mom 205 had agreed to - had requested that her daughter receive counselling. And she couldn't even return a 206 phone call. And I knew that mom was home full time. So its not like she was at a job or anything. That 207 surprised me that there was no feedback at all. And I would even say that I would be at the school on 208 such and such a day and if the child was not going to be there could somebody please let me know so 209 that I wouldn't drive to the school for nothing. That didn't work. So I met with the girl. And the girl 210 wouldn't make eye contact with me and she was extremely over weight. She could barely sit in the chair. 211 In fact I was worried about offering her just a simple school chair because I was worried that either she'd 212 be very uncomfortable or that the chair could hardly hold her weight. And I tried to work with her and 213 the girl said She said "My mom said I have to have counselling. I don't really want counselling but my 214 mom says I have to come." And I said "Is it because of the fighting you've been in." And she said yah. 215 And so I said, "Well, if your mom says you have to have counselling and you don't really feel like 216 coming, what are some of the things that we could do in counselling. Sometimes kids who don't like to 217 talk, like to draw. 218 And she said no she was terrible at drawing. 219 "or they play cards' 220 No, she didn't want to play cards. 221 Or they do crafts. 222 Crafts. She said she would like to do crafts. 154 223 And I said can you tell me some things that you are interested in and I can try and bring -1 gave her 224 some suggestions -225 She said whatever. She didn't care, so I was feeling a little discouraged by this and I try hard not to work 226 with reluctant clients because there are so many kids that need and want counselling that if a kid is not 227 wanting to come and mom has said you have to go to counselling I don't feel really good about spending 228 a lot of time about doing that. So I said to her - how many times do we have to meet If your mom says 229 you have to come to counselling. Two four six time what do you think. She said four. She'd meet with 230 me four times. So I said okay and she asked if she could go back to class and she left. So we had about a 231 20 minute really unsatisfactory feeling session - like oh great its almost like these stories you hear about 232 these people that have these mandated counselling with offenders etc. how crummy that feels. And the 233 next time I went to the school she wasn't there. She was absent the next two times I tried to meet with 234 her. I still have not had a response. I phoned morning and evening -1 have never talked to mom yet. So 235 I went to the school last week to meet with this girl and was quite surprised to find she was there and 236 she came with me. and I'm trying to remember what the question was that I asked - She actually made 237 eye contact this time and her physical self was quite different than when I has spoken to her before and 23 8 she made eye contact and there was some facial expression and I said -1 haven't seen you for a couple of 239 weeks and I really get the feeling that things are a bit better. Is something going better or you look a bit 240 better and a bit happier. And she said - Well, I'm really happy cause my mom's been clean for three 241 months now. And I said - well, what does that mean - and she said - well, she hasn't done any drugs. 242 She's promised me she's quitting drugs and she hasn't done any drugs for three months now. And she 243 said - I'm sorry if I wasn't very nice the time I met you before but I didn't know what I was allowed to 244 say so I didn't say anything. But when I went home that night I asked my mom if it was okay if I talked 245 about her quitting drugs and she said yes you can tell the counsellor anything that you want. She said 246 that now I know its okay that I talk to you. My mom gave me permission. And she proceeded to tell me a 247 little bit about mom being on drugs and which drugs she was on. And she told me that for about six 248 years mom and her step-dad had been cocaine addicts and that this is what there whole family life had 249 revolved around was these adult in her words - going into their bedroom, locking the door for the day 250 sometimes and doing cocaine. With this girl and her brother locked out of the bedroom starting I would 251 guess from when this child was in kindergarten or grade one. And we started talking about what that 252 was like and how she coped with that and how mom had made promises before that they were going to 253 quit and then she'd take it again. She talked about a baby that mom had had that had died at the age of 5 254 days and I don't know if it was connected in any way to mom's drug use although this girl seemed to 255 think that there was a connection with that and I just was amazed at this kid and her strength and what 256 she'd endured and how she was coping at school - she wasn't doing great at school but she was passing 257 and she was - she had never confided in any adult along the way that there were whole days when her 258 mom was locked in the bedroom doing cocaine and that she and her brother had sort of fended for 259 themselves in the rest of the house and I don't know what volume of the family's resources had gone into 260 the cocaine habit and what that meant in terms of what they had materially and . She was so proud of 261 her mom. There was no complaining or poor me. It was just a very ... accepting - not a flat ...It wasn't a 262 flat acceptance of well, this is my life. It was - she really felt optimistic that mom was trying to quit 263 drugs. And that mom had a problem and she was so empathetic with her mom and loved her so much. 264 And didn't complain about poor me or my life or anything - it was just good mom's trying hard and she 265 might make it this time. We're all really hopeful. 266 267 H. She was really upbeat about it and sort of optimistic. 268 269 Irene: yah - She wasn't upbeat yet but there was a hopefulness there that was amazing because from the 270 outside you would guess from that kind of childhood that she would be very angry child with a lot of 271 hostility toward her parents and she didn't have any of that. 272 273 H. She wasn't expressing it. 274 275 Irene: Yah. It was a very a mature acceptance - My mom has this big problem but she's doing the best 276 she can. 277 278 H. You're difficulty in respecting happened before that. 155 279 280 Irene: Yes. 281 282 H. Before you heard all of that - before you knew what was going on. 283 284 Irene: Yes. 285 286 H. And you talked about your feelings that the mother was very ambivalent. She asked for counselling 287 and then she was never at home when you called her and so you made a lot of trips to the school and you 288 had nothing to do when you got there because the girl wasn't there. So your feelings around that time 289 before you had the breakthrough - can you tell me what your feelings were surrounding your feelings of 290 disrespect. 291 292 Irene: I feel ashamed saying this but my gut reaction is Here's a ... kid whose on the road to being a loser 293 - you know , she's hugely overweight, she can't get along with people, she comes in the school and gets 294 in fist fights, she's going to be one of these kids whose in a gang in a special education room down at the 295 end of the hallway - is a big drain on the school system and on the public monies and social assistance 296 and the mom can't get it together to return a phone call. You know, 297 298 H. So you're feeling really annoyed. 299 300 Irene: ... Yah annoyed. You know why can't these guys, why was this kid struggling and she's having 301 problems, she's probably in fights because she's been at 7 or 8 different schools and she has no support 302 system and what's with these parents you know, why do they have to move 7 or 8 times? 303 304 H. Real frustration because you have a job you want to do and you are being blocked by the mother. 305 306 Irene: Yah. Okay you know you screw up the kids life and then you say can the school please fix her but 307 you are not even available to answer a phone call or you know you want somebody else to fix your kid 308 but you can't be bothered. 309 310 H. All the responsibility has been put on you. They are not willing to take responsibility. 311 312 Irene: Yah, yah. 313 314 H. And so you tell yourself - well you've been telling me what you tell yourself. And in this situation 315 what you did was ... within yourself. 316 317 Irene: Well when I met with the girl the first time I thought - she doesn't want to be here and I don't feel 318 much connection when a child won't even make eye contact with me. And she is sitting there sort of 319 with her arms folded like go ahead, counsel me. And she said she didn't want counselling - my mom 320 says I have to have counselling. 321 322 H. How do you feel when she says that? 323 324 Irene: There's a part of me that feels challenged, like "That's okay," like we'll - there will be some 325 benefit from this and we will make some relationship, if that's how you need to start out ah ..I'll pull 326 back to a level that's comfortable for both of us. I won't pursue you with things that are obviously not 327 what you need or want. And the crafts -1 don't know where that word even came into my head cause I 328 don't use that word with kids before. I was sort of throwing out ideas of how if the adults around us had 329 said we needed to be together for four hours, how could we make that time not intrusive. And I knew 330 from experience that just sitting doing crafts together, eventually we would get talking and I had no way 331 of guessing if I would talk with her in any depth but I would never have sat there asking probing 332 questions of a kid that didn't want to be there. So we could sit and have very low level intimacy doing a 333 craft together. 334 156 335 H. So engaging her in this way or suggesting to engage in this way or having this attitude do you 336 identify that as being respectful? 337 338 Irene: Yes, Yes guess so because I was really seeing where she was at - which was I didn't want 339 counselling. I thought that was really good of her to be so up front about it. 340 341 H. So honouring where she wanted to be and at the same time knowing that you had a job as counsellor 342 and honouring that as well. 343 344 Irene. ...Yah, I don't think people should be counselled against their will. And so I would never have 345 been in her face with a bunch of stuff about her problems without her being a willing participant in that. 346 So I guess that was respecting the boundary that she had drawn. Respecting it verbally and knowing in 347 myself that if we sit and do crafts together for a couple of hours lots of talking would happen. She might 348 not recognize it as counselling and at the very least to spend two or three not unpleasant hours with an 349 adult wouldn't hurt her. I mean, that was the very minimum that I hoped would happen. 350 351 H. But it sounds like what you are saying is that it was up to her to move the boundary. 352 353 Irene: Yes, Yah. 354 355 H. So she had control of what was happening to her. She had some - you were giving her some control 356 over what happened to her. 357 358 Irene: Yes. Yah. 359 360 H. Yah, ...Could you say a little more about the connection that you see between respect and boundaries. 361 362 Irene: Respect and boundaries? ... I come at that from a really personal level because there have been 363 times in my life when people didn't respect boundaries that I had set up - so I am very conscious of them 364 and very conscious of when people say no trying to hear that and not talk people into things or tell them 365 no, you don't really want that, you want this. Because I have been on the receiving end of that... so I try 366 to notice that and to not push around when people have said no here is where my line is. And I guess, 367 from experience in counselling I don't do this in my personal life, at least I hope I don't - if I do I don't 368 recognize it - in counselling I know that if a kid puts a boundary here and I say okay or if a kid says I 369 don't want to talkabout my dad. I'll say okay, that's fine I know that in the process of our being together 370 and spending time together and doing things that eventually we will talk a whole lot about dad. So I 371 respect that boundary knowing that a time usually will come when its gone. 372 373 H. Yes. I can understand that by allowing space for the other person to get around to the topic on their 374 own time. You sav you wouldn't do that in your own life, in your personal life. 375 376 Irene: I would try not to. 377 378 H. Try not to...? 379 380 Irene: If somebody says no, I don't want to do this or no I don't want to talk about it I wouldn't try like I 381 do in counselling to use other approaches to get there. 382 383 H. Ahh. Okay. So that in the counselling situation although you don't approach it directly, you are still 3 84 aware that you are trying to approach it in some way. 385 386 Irene: Yep. 387 388 H. Where as in your personal life if somebody said I don't want to talk about my father then would be it 389 you wouldn't talk about their father and you wouldn't try to arrange that situation so that they got around 390 to eventually talking about it. 157 391 392 Irene: That's right, Yah, yah. 393 394 H. What are the differences in respecting a client in this case and because we are talking about children 395 who are clients here and your personal life? It seems to have something to do with the fact that there is 396 something you want to achieve in the end. 397 398 Irene: Yes, Yep. 399 400 H. It's different. In your personal life you want to maintain a friendship but in a counselling situation 401 you have a different agenda. 402 403 Irene: Yes, because part of the reason the person is there - usually the thing they don't want to talk about 404 is usually the thing its often been causing huge difficulties in life. So in order to address those things - to 405 use that example, eventually you need to talk about your father when you have more of a relationship 406 and when you feel safer and when its more comfortable. And I guess too, because my clients are children 407 its almost unfair - its different when its an adult - you know there's two adults in the room - that with a 408 child because a child doesn't know that you are using projective drawing techniques or that when you -409 you know - get out the dishes and the play dough and stuff eventually you'll be having a meal together 410 and you'll be talking and acting or if you have the puppets eventually one of them will become dad's 411 voice and as an adult I know that and a child isn't aware that we'll come around to that where an adult 412 could protect themselves more if an adult says I will not talk about my father - they put those boundaries 413 around. Because most of the therapy is talking, the alarm bell can always go off whenever the word 414 father comes up. But with a child, there's two different things happening - one is you've got an adults 415 intelligence and a child's intelligence and the other thing is you do so many more activities with a child -416 you know drawing and play therapy and puppets and story telling and eventually you can come to that 417 material and you can do a lot of, you can learn a lot about father without ever having talked about him. 418 419 H. It sounds as though you still honour the child's desires to not come at the subject directly but you have 420 some techniques that get at the topic indirectly. 421 422 Irene: Yes. 423 424 H. And you wouldn't do that in your own personal life. 425 426 Irene: I try not to , yah. 427 428 H. Do you - Would you consider the indirect method of helping a child to open up - would you consider 429 that disrespectful? 430 431 Irene: No because I think sometimes children say things -1 don't want to talk about my father. I don't 432 want to talk about my dad. What I get more of even more than people is children who are referred 433 because they are having a lot of behaviour problems. And I'll say - your teacher says its really hard for 434 you to not fight with kids in the class. And they'll say "I don't want to talk about that. I don't want to talk 435 about that day when I got in trouble." It's more like their own actions they don't want to talk about or 436 reflect on. I still trving to recall your question... 437 438 H. using indirect methods... 439 440 Irene: Do I consider that disrespectful. 441 442 H. Part of being respectful for you is when somebody puts a boundary up you say that's okay that's your 443 boundary - we'll respect that -1 respect your right to say what you want to talk about and what you don't 444 want to talk about. And then you went on to talk about in the therapy session with children that you 445 come at some of these topics in an indirect way. I just wanted you to clarify for me how respect fits into 446 that for you - how it fits in indirect way. 158 447 448 Irene: With younger kids I do a lot of play therapy activity and the kids choose what activity they are 449 going to do and they sometimes get very directive - telling me what role I am and I'm to sit here and I'm 450 the person who does this and even sometimes feed me lines - like sometimes I come home from work 451 and you say - and they'll tell me what to do when we get in the play. So because they are so directive in 452 the play I assume that when they start playing it out - and they're right - when they say I don't want to 453 talk about my dad - they mean it. It's too painful and it makes them upset or it's just negative stuff that 454 they don't want to admit - you know my dad left and he hasn't phoned me for a year. I don't want to talk 455 about it. But in the play if the child acts it out or acts or acts out a really good loving dad showing this 456 what a dad should be like or they act out their fantasy dad or they may do a bunch of anger, or whatever 457 they choose to act out in a play and I think they choose on a very subconscious level. They think they are 458 just playing but they are acting out what they need to act out and they can often through their play, fix or 459 feel what they need to do and I feel in most cases I'm just a facilitator. I'm the one that's made this safe 460 place for them and had the stuff there that they can go ahead and do what they need to do. 461 462 H. And it's still their choice. And so you are still respecting them because you are allowing them that 463 choice. 464 465 Irene: Yah the play is self directed. 466 467 H. They have input. 468 469 Irene: They have more than input, They control the play. They have all these things of toys they can 470 choose from and they set it all up. So when a kid says -1 don't want to talk about my dad and I say okay, 471 that's okay. We won't talk about dad. I'm reassuring them that I am not going to probe. And the fact that 472 I know that eventually we will play out something around dad and they will let me know what I need to 473 know about dad in another way. The fact that I know that doesn't mean that I direct it or cause it to 474 happen. I just know that through the course of our being together they will in fact tell me lots about dad. 475 Does that make sense - without them even being aware of it? 476 477 H. Yes. 478 479 Irene: So although I know it's going to happen it's almost like the theological argument - Does God 480 know if we are going to go to heaven? 481 482 (...digression into metaphor about free will vs. determination. - not transcribed -) 483 484 Was there an incident from your personal life that struck you in particular? You asked me in the 485 beginning which I would want and I was wondering if there was an incident you were thinking of - that 486 you thought was interesting? .. When your immediate gut reaction wasn't at the level that you wanted. 487 488 Irene: In 1986,1 had the chance to go on a tour with some other social studies teachers from across 489 Canada.- to eastern Europe and to Israel. It was a holocaust study. And it was a fantastic experience -490 very emotional and very high adrenaline. We were in Poland and Czechoslovakia, Austria, and 491 Germany. We toured holocaust sights and then talked to holocaust survivors and studied the holocaust 492 from that aspect and then we went to Israel and spent about a week there seeing - studying the formation 493 of the state of Israel and the way they taught holocaust and commemorated the holocaust in Israel and 494 we did a little sight seeing of other places of historical interest along the way but our focus was studying 495 the holocaust and the aftermath and how that led to the state of Israel having policies and stances. 496 Almost the last day, it must have been about the 15 or 16th day of this trip we went to Haifa and we 497 were given the opportunity to tour the world headquarters of the Ba'hai faith. They have this incredibly 498 beautiful building. It's fairly new, beautifully appointed and lovely ...(description not transcribed) When 499 we went in we were very warmly greeted and we were given refreshments which is a middle eastern 500 custom of giving people something to drink right away because you have come in from this incredible 501 heat. The took us on a tour of this beautiful, beautiful building (More description of cleanliness) We 502 were given a little bit of the history of their religion and how it was founded in the 1800's by someone 159 503 called Bob and I don't know whether it was exhaustion or what it was but this struck me as 504 hilariously funny that people would go to a church founded by a guy named Bob - It is spelled differently 505 in the middle eastern script. I was like - and everyone on the tour was a teacher, we were all high school 506 teachers. I was like the bad kid on a field trip. I could hardly hold down my scorn and my mirth at this 507 totally antiseptic, very ascetically pleasing, cerebral religion. Everything the woman said I agreed with. 508 It was one of the most rational, egalitarian, sensible religions. If you were ever going to invent a religion 509 that would be it. It was just a lovely set of beliefs. I don't know whether it was just too clean, just too 510 perfect. I began thinking a real religion should have blood and guts and a history of myth and legend 511 and somebody had a vision and someone came off a mountain top with these slabs of rock, all these 512 hideous bible stories - the old testament and stuff in the Koran. I'm not a religious person. I don't belong 513 to an organized religion. But I thought if I was going to join an organized religion, cerebrally this one 514 makes an incredible amount of sense. But on a gut level there was something - it seemed way artificial. 515 There was a phoniness to it and I don't know if it was in conjunction with what we had seen and 516 experienced in the previous two weeks but I was ashamed of my behaviour. 517 518 H. So this was a time when you were feeling disrespectful. 519 520 Irene: Yes. I was feeling - How can a bunch of people sit around the table and invent a religion. This 521 doesn't make any sense. This isn't a bona fide religion. Like the Moslem religion or the Jewish religion. 522 523 H. Those were your thoughts at the time. What were your feelings that went along with that? 524 525 Irene: I was feeling like a bad kid. I was feeling like I was brought on this trip to the lovely building and 526 this lady is giving this talk and I am looking for things to make fun of. I felt like I was about in grade 527 seven. 528 529 H. You thought it was too good to be true. 530 531 Irene: Yes. 532 533 H. And so you were looking for fault. 534 535 Irene: And I was so scornful of it. I was amazed at my behaviour. I didn't behave badly. I mean I didn't 536 act up or start calling out things. But in my head I was thinking this is like the Amway of religions. It's 537 so organized and... 538 539 H. That was your impression of it at the time. 540 541 Irene: Yah It was so clean and .. 542 543 H. What did you do with yourself about that? 544 545 Irene: I sort of developed a couple of anecdotes, sort of disparaging stories about where you have gone 546 through all this terrible horror and bloodshed and persecution that happened to the Jews and to other 547 people in WW2 and then you come - and I was also aware that there are several hundred members of the 548 Ba'hai faith that have been persecuted for their belief. I couldn't come to any sense of respect over that. 549 Here you have this incredible mass of suffering that's beyond human comprehension and here's a list of 550 the people of this religion that have suffered for their faith and the time was all wrong. The juxtaposition 551 of these two facts - it was really hard to have... 552 553 H. What did you want to have at the end? 554 555 Irene: Of the visit to the Ba'hai faith or of the trip? 556 160 557 H. Of this experience of feeling scornful and disrespectful and trying to find fault in this religion 558 and feeling it so unbalanced compared to what had happened to the Jews. What ending would you like to 559 have written for your own self, for what was going on inside you? 560 561 Irene: I don't think I know. What happened was I had a couple of little anecdotes about ..I can't even 562 remember them now. One was you know - can you really keep a straight face when you are praying to a 563 guy named Bob. And when I returned to Canada, I spent a couple of days in Toronto with my brother 564 and his wife and said these sort of disparaging things. My sister-in- law, who I have a lot of respect for 565 said very gently to me... We have some friends that go to the Ba'hai faith and they are very nice people 566 and that they're very committed. The first time she said it I didn't get it I was so full of the sights and 567 scenes of this whole trip. I must have made another remark and she said it again, again very gently "We 568 know some people that are Ba'hai's and it just seems like its a really wonderful faith." And suddenly I 569 realized what I was saying and how... 570 571 H. So You saw yourself and you saw you were being disrespectful 572 . 573 Irene: Very disrespectful, very small minded. 574 575 H. What did you think of yourself at that time? 576 577 Irene: I was ashamed. I was really ashamed of my couple of funny stories of my experience. 578 579 H. And what did you do with yourself? 580 581 Irene: I stopped. I thought. I don't know what kind of a head space I was in when I was there but I don't 582 like it. That's it I'm not going to talk about - when I'm describing my trip I'll just say we had a chance to 583 tour the Ba'hai Center. 584 585 H. Do you still have the same feelings about Ba'hai now? 586 587 Irene: No. 588 589 H. Was the comment that your sister-in-law made sort of pivotal in having you see that from a different 590 perspective? 591 592 Irene: Yes. It brought me back down to earth. It was like having cold water thrown in my face. Like 593 would you smarten up. 594 595 H. So when I asked you earlier how you would want it to end - this is how it would end. You maybe feel 596 complete with this situation now in that you started off with this response that you weren't comfortable 597 with and then had the experience with your sister-in-law and then got a different perspective for 598 yourself. 599 600 Recording difficulty. The next part is a rerecording. 601 602 Irene: So that experience of I think when I was a kid at university, I was with a very narrow spectrum 603 very like minded, like aged people and it was really an eye opener for me to live in this village of people 604 with other ways of being. And I think too it was a real redneck time to some of the people, not all but 605 some of the people that sat in judgment of anything that was different or unusual and so I really had to 606 do a lot of examining of my feelings around that and I remember a teacher moving to this little town 607 who had a ponytail, back in the early 70's. I mean people were horrified, people would have had him 608 fired because he had a ponytail. It was just such an incredible way of being a man in this little town. 609 People couldn't see anything except this ponytail on the back of this guy's head. And that is just one 610 example of how when that would happen I would really have to think through what was important and 611 what wasn't important and how do you argue against that or defend people against that kind of small 612 mindedness. So, that was good practice. Good experience. 161 613 614 H. So that would have been when we were talking about the Ba'hai. Your sister in law. I'll just recap. 615 We went from the Ba'hai experience and I asked you to talk about your philosophy. Would you mind 616 saying that again. What philosophy of life do you have that informs your concept of respect? 617 618 Irene: I believe in the value of all people. And the equality of - that people should be treated with 619 respect because of their value as human beings. Of human lives. Just being a member of the human race 620 entitles you to a certain amount of respect. .621 622 H. And you talked about other kinds. There almost two definitions of respect. You talked about people 623 who do something that you admire and then there's respect due people just because they're human. 624 625 Irene: And how when I was younger I was much more respectful of people who had accomplished great 626 things and written books or won awards and as I've gotten older I've developed a deep respect for people 627 who have lived their lives well and by that I mean good decent people and sustaining relationships with 628 people around them and being good moms, good husbands, good dads, neat teenagers. There's just a 629 tremendous amount of human good out there that isn't acknowledged because it never makes the papers. 630 631 H. And I asked you about the connection between respect and your concept of yourself. 632 633 Irene: As I have changed through my life and gone through various life experiences I have much more 634 respect for people's struggles and the decisions that people make and I think that's when I talked about 63 5 the road not taken. I see people who got to the same crossroads that I was and they chose to take a 636 different path but I respect that because I could just as easily have made that decision also. 637 638 H. So you said you had a broader view of what was acceptable. 639 640 Irene: As opposed to when I was twenty and had all the answers. 641 642 H. And then also you talked about what the opposite of respect was. 643 644 Irene: I said scorn or disdain. 645 646 H. Try to criticize or put people down for their value systems and who they are. 647 648 Irene: Or treat them differently because of a perceived difference. 649 650 H. You were saying in the school system, some children come from families that could easily be 651 marginalized. They don't have the attributes that have status in our society and so that makes them be 652 marginalized. There's one other question I would like to ask - Is there a connection for you in being 653 respectful to somebody and being respected by somebody. 654 655 Irene: I think most of the time it is a flow back and forth. Like so many other human interactions what 656 we receive from someone we mirror and enlarge and send back to them so there is a loop. So I think in 657 many cases there is a respect loop. But I think there's also times when I have respected people and they 658 have no reason to respect me. Either because they don't know me or... 659 660 H. Two definitions - respect for being human and respect because they have to know you and therefore 661 you would have attributes that would be respectable. 662 663 Irene: I'm trying to think if there is anybody who hasn't respected me who I have respected. ...I'm sure I 664 could come up with somebody whom I respect but who doesn't respect me. Well, I work with some 665 families where the family has been very marginalized and they depend on various government agencies 666 and in the instances I am thinking of - there's a mom who's had social workers and child care workers 667 and ministry people and she's just sick of them and I went to the house with a concern that we had and I 668 think she is just fed up with people coming and talking to her about her children. I didn't get a sense of a 162 669 lot - much respect for me because I was another one of those people who was trying to tell her how -670 in her view tell her how to raise her children. And yet when I heard about her struggle and see what she 671 is doing I really respect her and the horrendous, huge task that she has raising a whole bunch of kids all 672 by herself with a lot of difficulties. So that is a case where I respect her and I don't think . -she doesn't 673 respect me because of the position that I have. So I guess that can happen. And I have had a couple of 674 students that I didn't feel treated me with respect. But I respected them because I knew stuff in their life 675 that was -1 could see why they were acting the way they were. So.. 676 677 H. Yah. is there anything that you would like to add or say? 678 679 Irene: um This has been a good experience. 163 Transcript # 7, Norman 1 H: In trying to get a sense of what respect means to different people, what I've mostly been asking 2 people to do is think of a time, hopefully recently, where you have not - you're immediate response has 3 not been to be as respectful as you would like yourself to be. As you see yourself being respectful in a 4 clinical situation in your work or um at another time as well, in a private situation. Hopefully it would 5 be one in each - because sometimes it's quite different when people are looking at respect through their -6 as a counsellor or just you know in their daily life. 7 8 Norman: um hum And are you defining respect in a certain way? 9 10 H: No, I'm not because that's actually what the study is about. 11 12 Norman: I see. 13 14 H: Trying to find out what respect means to different people. 15 16 Norman: um hum um I can think of the one in my individual life 17 outside of counselling (H: okay) In terms of counselling I'm having a harder time with that 18 one - of coming up with (H: Well, you say you counsel adolescents and their families, is there ever a 19 time when um ... you ... have trouble respecting maybe the family in the sense of how they treated their 20 child or visa versa? ) Yah, I'm thinking of one now 21 22 H: If you could just walk me through your experience. Really try and give me a picture of what that 23 experience was like for you - what your feelings were, what your thoughts were, what you said to 24 yourself, what you ended up doing - how you worked with that and where you got to eventually. Start 25 with the initial feeling of 26 27 Norman: And do you want me to explain the clinical one (H: yah) The one in 28 29 H: If you start with that one and hopefully we'll 30 31 Norman: um. The situation is a mother and son. um (Interruption of phone not answered) Son is sixteen 32 years old. um Is recommended to counselling from the probation department, and um for some acting 33 out behaviour involving um drug use and possibly theft. The mother is alcoholic, an active alcoholic and 34 is very rude and um exhibiting some paranoid symptoms and very manipulative and sabotaging the 3 5 process of counselling which I think can be very helpful to the son. For example, um (Interruption at 36 door) that she is very blaming of the son for having to go through this process of counselling and I think 37 the incident that got me the most was when she was extremely late the first time to a session like half 3 8 hour late, I ended up seeing them. The next session she didn't show up and then she called me saying 39 that she needed to see me to fulfill the probation requirements and as I was making another session and 40 she was a medical client who was off of medical and she was going to have to pay out of pocket in order 41 for the session and then she asked how long the session was and I told her and she turned to her son 42 while on the phone with me and saying it's going to cost so much per minute so you better you know 43 make good use of this time. And um I noticed that there was a disgust and aversion that rose up in me 44 especially at that time. I felt that her um attitude toward the counselling was sabotaging what benefit 45 could come from it. 46 47 H: Your - when you talk about having a feeling of aversion to her was it a kind of closing off? 48 49 Norman: It was a kind of (H: positive feelings) a disgust and and um dislike um intolerance (H: um hum 50 okay) and from those feelings coming with an idea that um I'm not going to really get my foot in the 51 door to be helpful with with in this situation. 52 164 53 H: um hum because of your well that was sort of your self talk like I'm not ( Norman: right, 54 right)going to be able to help here because you're sabotaging (Norman: right) the process (Norman: um 55 hum), um and also you mentioned blame earlier so you're and and you're also going to blame that on 56 your son. Is that part of it? 57 58 Norman: That she was undermining and ah in that abbreviated session that I had with them the first 59 time he seemed very much healthier than she was and he was mainly coping with a lot of child of 60 alcoholic strategies and she was clearly in my mind much more dysfunctional and troubled than he was. 61 62 63 H: And what did you do then ... as far as working with yourself with those feelings of disgust and 64 aversion? 65 66 Norman: I noticed them, was aware of them (interruption) I um in my memory I think I was just aware 67 of them and noticing my intolerance and my anger and my compassion for the boy. 11 think I felt 68 identification towards him. Um and .. .didn't hear from them ..actually not that's not true um we did 69 make an appointment and I was still hoping that there was some way -1 was still trying to figure out a 70 strategy or a way that I could be able to see him or he could get some support that the mother wouldn't 71 undermine. And ah ... we did have one more session and then she made an appointment for another 72 session which they didn't show up for and then I just withdrew. You know, I didn't follow up I just said 73 okay that's it. So I basically disengaged at some point. (H: um hum) based on their non-compliance. 74 75 H: Yes.. When they are mandated by the courts, it's not always an optimal situation for having progress 76 in therapy. 77 78 Norman: Sure, 11 mean over the years I've seen many court ordered counsellings. Some don't go very 79 far but others can actually go quite well. I felt it wasn't so much the court mandate that was in the way 80 as much as the mother's contamination and her paranoia. I mean she was - when I'd ask her certain 81 questions, just typical interview questions she'd want to know why I was asking those questions and 82 what difference did that make and so she had an edge a sort of fearful kind of paranoid edge to her. And 83 I wasn't successful in being able to um diffuse that - her her defenses. 84 85 H: How about um did you make any any efforts to work with your own feelings of um disgust and 86 aversion and intolerance? 87 88 Norman: um Well in terms of my own internal processing (H: um hum) I didn't um you know seek 89 consultation from a supervisor or anything like that (H: no) but more um yah just for me my processing 90 a lot is you know just becoming aware of the feelings you know seeing what is um and and actually in 91 processing it of seeing how the level of my identification with the boy who um because I was also a child 92 of an alcoholic and an only child (H: um okay) um and so there was some sense of me kind of tapping 93 into my own sense of identification and what made the repulsion you know there for me where I couldn't 94 be more compassionate with her. So it came back to my own child of origin issues. 95 96 H: Uh hah. 97 98 Norman: Besides I mean that and also also just dealing with a person with difficult behaviour. So so to 99 some degree it was my processing of ... seeing connections with my own child of origin issues. 100 101 H: So when um ... so you process on getting those feelings is first to notice them and then to look a little 102 farther to see where they might come from (Norman: right) um ... and you and in this case you 103 recognize that it had to do with a a similar past experience you had that was similar to the boy of 104 dealing with a parent that was an alcoholic. 105 106 Norman: That there was a style that that was similar. And I think um in my ... first couple of 107 interchanges in person and on the phone, through processing ... I .. .kind of made room and respected if 108 you will the mother's or came to respect the mother's um style as a way of still trying to be helpful to the 165 109 boy um in kind of working through my aversion, disgust and ssaying well, this boy has to deal with 110 this um everyday and you know I'll see if I can work with that so that I can have some kind of in to be 111 able to get into the system and make some there you know some effect, excuse me, some therapeutic 112 change. 113 114 H: With the mother? 115 116 Norman: With the son. I ah and the mother to some degree too. ah To see to what extent the mother 117 could develop any kind of trust or help in parenting this (sneeze, excuse me) parenting her son ... um 118 119 H: Can we just go back over that because I am not really clear there. Um in your process of seeing 120 things, seeing where the cause is and then you said um about ... you came to a point where you could 121 have more respect for the mother ... I wonder if you could just tell me how you how you got from sort of 122 disgust and aversion and then you went to seeing your feelings and seeing the cause of those feelings 123 and then you came to having more respect. Can you fill a little more in that gap? 124 125 Norman: Yah, yah. I'll say it the other way around. Through my identification with what the boy might 126 be feeling and tapping into my own child of origin issues and my sense that it could be really therapeutic 127 for this boy to have some um person or intervention into this dysfunctional system um ... I was able to 128 um see that the way that I was going to do that or even to stay connec - It required me staying 129 connected on some level and thereby (H: with?) with the family unit with the boy and the mother. That I 130 wasn't going to be able to see the boy unless the mother bought into it - that that she ... 131 132 H: So that was a motivator for you. 133 134 Norman: So my identification with the boy's sense of pain or coping mechanism um opened me up to 135 dealing with this woman that ordinarily I might not, I might just dismiss um or disengage from due to 136 her rude and paranoid behaviour. 137 138 H: So the motivating factor for you was the identification with this boy and knowing that the only way 139 you would help him would be to find a way to be more open to the mother as well. (Norman: um hum) 140 And how did you do that? 141 142 Norman: Well I attempted to, I attempted to do it just in seeing that that was going to be the only way 143 um so. How did I do it? I'm not sure how I did it. Um it could have been that the ah the the 144 necessity kind of created an opening or an openness for that feeling to be. Um ... I don't know if I can 145 answer that question of how... 146 147 H: Yah, Cause it seems because the thread that I am hearing you say is that it's your caring for the boy. 148 149 Norman: Right, It was my identification with his pain and seeing that he needed some support and 150 through that that the only way that support was going to come was to somehow to engage the mother in 151 a way to allow her to be okay with the process so it was some ways it was strategic .. .um hum 152 153 H: You were looking for a way to engage the mother. Your initial reaction was disgust and aversion 154 which you recognized was not a way to engage the mother. 155 156 Norman: In other words I know if I acted on my disgust and aversion then I would just withdraw and not 157 deal with ah with her. 158 159 H: So in wanting to be able to dialogue with her on some level, in some way, that desire I don't 160 know. I can see it but sort of refocused you away from the aversion and disgust. You stopped having 161 those feelings for a moment so that you could - so that something else could be there or ? 162 166 163 Norman: My sense was in looking back on the process is that it changed where there were times 164 when when I wasn't that with some period of time I didn't feel so much disgust and aversion. It wasn't a 165 primal feeling. 166 167 H: And when - What was there then? When that wasn't there what was there? 168 169 Norman: huh. I think more of an openness, um More of a sense of respect of that life was hard for her as 170 well and and some compassion ah and and strategically an opening of how how to keep ah at least a 171 neutral relationship with her that would allow her boy to get therapy 172 173 H: Yah. So in saying that life was hard for her too, sort of starting to move towards seeing ... her and 174 what was happening for her. 175 176 Norman: Yah and I'd have to say that that was secondary to the strategic aspect of how was I going to 177 help this boy you know and and um and that's where you know when you originally asked me well when 178 did respect break down um in some ways I think the aversion and disgust kind of eroded some level of 179 respect for her and I was more clued into what was going to help this boy that has to deal with this on a 180 daily basis. 181 182 H: But in fact in trying to help the boy you ended up creating or finding a place in yourself where you 183 could have more respect for the mom 184 185 Norman: Right, right. And I guess what I am saying is that I don't want to make that sound like some 186 spiritual conversion or or any kind of great work on my part (H: Yah) it was more of a strategic (H: Um 187 hum) incentive to do that, ah 188 189 H: (unclear) No, that's clear, that's really clear. (Norman: okay) Yah, that's great! y 190 191 H: Has there ever been a clinical time when your when sort of your primary client has has ... um created 192 as situation where you felt aversion and disgust or... 193 194 Norman: Yes, um there's one um young man that I see who in the midst of his um he was having a a 195 paranoid psychotic episode and became very threatening of me ah ah and was very threatening of his 196 fiancee in the office and ... there was a that was a situation that um was very difficult for me to deal 197 with. And ah and that was one where I did seek out therapeutic support to really sort out my feelings and 198 and ah and you know kind of create a sense of healing cause that was very um troubling to me - just the 199 intensity of his acting out. 200 201 H: Was it like a personal attack on you? 202 203 Norman: It was a personal threat, both physical and professional and this is a young man who is a 204 borderline personality disorder and someone that I had seen um for many years on and off ah to um 205 when I'd seen it in his life with other people that when he'd have a real strong disagreement with 206 he'd get very ugly in and vindictive in the way that he could express himself and that never was 207 transferred onto me in all the years of therapy and and he came in with his girlfriend and he was very 208 agitated and the most agitated slash paranoid that I had ever seen him and he was convinced that his 209 fiancee was talking with his sister about him and he had brought her into the session to try and get out 210 of her the truth and I sensed that it was a very volatile situation and I confronted him about it and told 211 him that it was inappropriate for him to be demanding of her a response that he had wanted and then he 212 turned on me and got really ugly and physically threatening and professionally threatening and so I was 213 um quite upset and I was also concerned about her safety after they left the office. Um so... 214 215 H: And at that point you felt that you had lost respect for him? 216 217 Norman: See the difficult thing is that I don't use the word respect a lot. Um I don't ... I don't know if I 218 lost respect for him um yah it's respect is a word like when people bring it up in my 167 219 practice I have a hard time with it because it means so many different things for different people. 220 Like for young people respect is a kind of um ... um .... it sometimes can have kind of like macho type 221 of acceptance um and when parents will tell kids "oh, you don't respect me" um it's such a gray word 222 that I try not to use it myself. You know I try and operationally try and define um what respect means so 223 when you ask me the question did I lose respect for him I - ah something was lost. Um I lost a certain 224 kind of trust in a certain aspect of our relationship, .. .um... so definitely I could say that something was 225 lost um whether I lost respect for him .. um ... you know what's interesting is what's coming up for me 226 is in tied in with the other case that I mentioned is that when my aversion, disgust gets triggered maybe 227 that's how I conceive of losing respect for someone. Where that aversion, disgust um ... brings me into 228 my own sense of kind of wanting to withdraw from and then doesn't really allow for that person's being 229 to be too close or connected with. So maybe that's, maybe that would be in that in that sense if we define 230 it as such then I could see that I lost respect because um because it brought me inward into my own kind 231 of um ... internal defenses to deal with those feelings. 232 233 H: In your, in your first example with the mother um.. .um what I was, what I was understanding was 234 that your aversion and disgust in the initial instance ah you were focused on the boy, then you know 23 5 being motivated to help the boy, what happened was you were more open to seeing I think you used the 236 word "I was more open to seeing that where she was coming from, that she had problems too" And so 237 when you felt you had more respect for her you were looking more at what the world looked like for her. 238 239 Norman: Right, right. 240 241 H: And and so I I'm just wondering if that that concept that seemed to be in your first example is also in 242 this one. That when you get that aversion and disgust that what's lost for you also starts is seeing 243 another person. 244 245 Norman: Um hum, right, right. That I go into more -1 withdraw from the other person and go more into 246 my own internal defenses. With this young man, ironically after ah this incident and I called to check up 247 and you know he was still very threatening and leave me alone and I hadn't heard from him in about 8 248 months and then he called back and gradually um you know he's back in touch with me and you know 249 I've been seeing him again. Um and we processed quite a bit in order for me to see him again. Um 250 I felt like I needed to let him know what that was like for me and you know set boundaries for him and 251 he was very apologetic and and um and um I can't say that didn't that that experience didn't make me 252 somewhat more defended or cautious with him. 253 254 H: Yah, So it left you less open. And you started with the same feelings of sort of disgust or aversion? 255 256 Norman: And with him it was fear, with him it was fear. 257 258 H: Also with fear, yah. Did you also go through the same process of trying to look for the cause like 259 obviously like [Norman: Sure, sure I, I was] was a little more obvious perhaps. 260 261 Norman: Yah and and in terms of my own therapy and looking at why and how it got me so disoriented 262 and upset, um .... there was a lot of good therapeutic work that I did on myself in terms again going 263 back to my own issues of um of you know core issues of when I felt unsafe and so forth. (H: um 264 hum, um hum ) because my response was clearly more um it was more that what was 265 appropriate just given, I mean even thought it was an uh a very troubling event I was aware that in me it 266 had shaken something - it had accessed something much deeper you know, more core type of ah fear and 267 defense. 268 269 H: You recognized your responses being greater than what was appropriate for the situation. 270 271 Norman: Right, um hum. And and longer lasting you know after the situation was somewhat diffused I 272 was still left with a very uncomfortable feeling for for a while. 273 274 H: Yah, I recognize those things too in myself and I often um find myself dwelling like the idea the 275 situation won't stop replaying or you know there is always a sense of agitation when I think of that and 276 that usually indicates to me that there's more to the situation that just the situation with this person. 277 Yah. yah Um So in in the end with this with this person now that you have started seeing 278 him again you're feeling not quite as open towards him perhaps as you were before or ?? Is that too big a 279 step, you said were it's not quite the same. 280 281 Norman: Yah,(H: not quite as trusting) I feel like there's um right there's a wound that that I feel 282 like I'm open to him and there I'm reserved in terms of um in not allowing a cert... that type of 283 experience to recreate itself, ah so... 284 285 H: You're sort of watchful in that area. (Norman: Right) of maybe pushing his buttons. 286 287 Norman: I mean I still feel like I can be confrontive with him at times but if it if it comes into where I 288 feel like he's um.. .more sensitive to what ..um might trigger his paranoid type of responses. 289 290 H: Yah. And that openness - you say you are open to him - how does that relate to being respectful? 291 292 Norman: Well I think it it has to do much more so with him than the first case I mentioned. I have a 293 long history of treating him and I am aware of his very incredibly difficult upbringing ... and um and so 294 I really do have a lot of compassion for him and care for him and I've seen how. much he's grown and 295 changed you know for the better in a lot of aieas ... in terms of you know he's clean and sober for a few 296 years now, he's not in trouble with the law and more um ... so he I mean he's improved a great deal and 297 he has an incredible amount of baggage to deal with you know as part of who he is. So, so for him the 298 step to compassion um... the ..the breach was much greater emotionally for me than the first case you 299 know with the woman right um was much more plugged into my sense of fear um ... and I also have a 300 much more um compassionate foundation with this young man than I do with her. so... 301 302 H: So everything was more extreme - you have your fear sense was the stronger response and also you 303 have such a long history of relating and such a knowledge of this person that you had you had more 304 feelings on which to come back in and open... 305 306 Norman: Um hum Although, although I must say that that took a gradual process. At first I told him 307 that I wouldn't be his therapist any more. And um and in this particular case um it took a while I 308 think for me to come around and .. .kind of do that. I mean we had to have several sessions over a long 309 period of time to debrief what happened before I would be okay with being his therapist again. 310 311 H: So it was quite a process for you to go through. 312 313 Norman: Oh yah. yes. In order for me to even feel like you know I wanted to do it. 314 315 H: Okay. And then you said you had one experience that was not a professional experience just an 316 experience in your life. 317 318 B um hum I think, I think in in this case it's more of a person um that it comes up quite a bit. 319 Again it has to it has to I'm seeing that the the common thread is the aversion, disgust that then 320 becomes my way of not respecting 321 322 H: Are the triggers for - in this situation with this person similar? I mean no that's not what I 323 that's not what I meant. It's not the triggers that I am after. Its what I want to know is um whatever 324 happens that produces this response do you go through the same the same process once this happens. 325 326 Norman: I can see a similar process where at first I get disgusted, averse, intolerant um judgmental and 327 then kind of dismiss the person um and then in kind of being with it for a while developing some level 328 of compassion sort of like letting that person in again with some kind of understanding. 329 169 330 H: What are you understanding here? 331 332 Norman: Understanding (H: yourself?) well I think at some level its understanding myself - to seeing my 333 aversion and disgust and seeing and then trying to appreciate the more positive side of that person , see 334 it more as a kind of wounding of that person rather than um... something that they are inflicting on me 335 or trying to do to me. um 336 337 H: So seeing it coming - whatever it is that they have done is something to do with their way and not 338 necessarily intended to hurt you. 339 340 Norman: right, exactly, right.(H: their way of being) right and that allows for more kind of compassion 341 and engagement. 342 343 H: um hum, Right okay Um you mentioned boundaries earlier and I was wondering if you could talk a 344 little bit about them any connection you see between respect and boundaries. 345 346 Norman: Well I think um I think that connection with people needs to be um a voluntary thing 347 which means that boundaries need to be honoured or respected in a way of different people and so that 348 so I guess I'm saying that boundaries need to be mutually um ... navigated in order for there to be •349 respect whereas if a boundary of one person or the other is crossed or violated then that seems to be a 350 disrespect. So I guess a guess an honouring of boundaries or limits or what's okay needs to be a mutually 351 negotiated or agreed upon process on some level. And when I say negotiated I don't necessarily even 352 mean consciously. 353 354 H: No, no I understand what you mean just just a recognition (unclear) In a sense in your example with 355 the mother and the boy would you say that she was not respecting his boundaries and that would be one 356 way of putting it? 357 358 Norman: Right and she and she wasn't really respecting my boundaries either. 359 360 H: With the appointment (Norman: yah, right) and um... 361 362 Norman: And her comment and I think she said "oh it's $40 dollars for 45 minutes that's almost that's a 363 dollar a minute. You better make good use of this time." It's like you know I felt almost like violated 364 like almost some kind of whore or something that was a that needed to be used for them to, you know, 365 get their task taken um task completed. 366 367 H: Yah, yah, And you said it's mutual so reciprocity then .... Do you see a difference in the need to be 368 respected in order to be respectful or the other way around between your - that in a professional situation 369 or a private situation. 370 371 B I think that's more incumbent on me to be more respectful in a professional situation. Um 372 in a private situation um it's more of a personal growth issue, um And it's good for me to be more 373 respectful. In a professional situation it is more of a sense of um besides personal growth, a sense of 374 duty. You know I feel it more of an obligation or duty, um And I and I think that there's a way of 375 ...um...dealing with feeling disrespected that doesn't necessarily have to be disrespectful, um ... And 3 76 the examples that I am giving you about not respecting um ... I guess another argument or logic could be 377 saying well I wasn't disrespectful towards them I was just acting appropriately um in defending myself 378 from being disrespected, um so... 379 380 H: Well, um one of the ways , you know a really common way that we use the word respect is if 381 somebody has an attribute that we admire and we say that we respect that person but um you know this 3 82 way that we're talking about is um when you talked about it in your examples it has more to do 383 with seeing the other person's point. Where the other person's coming from. 384 170 385 Norman: You know one of the best definitions I've heard of respect was um Angela Serans was here 386 and she did a facilitation for our group and she said ah the word respect re spect means to look again. 387 (H: again, yes) and and ah so in that sense our ability to look again and to allow for... to see that other 388 person... to me that respect requires some sense of openness and what I talked about my issues about not 389 respecting was when I needed, due to my own defenses, to go in and so I wasn't at that time looking 390 again because I was too busy defending and dealing with my own internal process of disgust, aversion 391 whatever and when I was able to look again um then more kinds of connectedness could happen again. 392 393 H: Yup, yah. That was great cause those were the words that I had in my mind but I didn't want to put 394 them in your mouth so I was trying to find another way of a of a coming into that area without actually 395 saying it. yah 396 397 H: Ah. What connection is there for you between respect and your concept of yourself? We have talked a 398 little bit about this but not too directly. 399 400 Norman: My sense of that is that if the self feels safe and secure then it can respect, then it can look 401 again. If the self is feeling attacked or threatened often times it's hard to look again towards the other 402 because there's too much defending going on. 403 404 H: ummm um hum yup 405 406 Norman: I have to leave pretty soon. 407 408 H: Okay I'll ask the one that I would really like to ask then. Is um ah how does, how does any 409 philosophy of life that you have or religion inform your sense of respect? 410 411 Norman: I think (H: how is that connected) yah I think, I think I have a basic philosophical belief and 412 that...everything (lost due to tape change) so that we're all connected, everything is connected on some 413 level and besides our limited sense of self there's a self which is um more real and higher and more of 414 an essence of who we really are that is more all inclusive and so and also comes somewhat from my 415 belief in Jungian psychology that our projections are really just showing us different sides of ourself. 416 That's another way really of saying that so that no aspect can be disowned or dismissed as something 417 other than a part of ourself. So I think that basic philosophy I think um you know leads to looking again 418 or respecting and looking internally to how projections that cause disgust or aversion are really kind of 419 just mirroring some things about ourself that need to be worked on. 420 421 H: um hum So the aversion is really to something in yourself. 422 423 Norman: um hum Or something that is that everything is in yourself I guess is what I'm saying. 424 425 H: Earlier you mentioned that as you were able to look again more, I'll use that term now but you didn't 426 use it exactly then but when you were in a situation with the mother and also with the other client you 427 got through looking at you own feelings and the cause of the feelings and worked through some of that 428 to the point that you said you had more compassion and I'm wondering if um for you respect is 429 something that you go through in order to get to compassion. Like is it is it a part of it - part of the 430 journey on the way to... 431 432 Norman: I don't know if it happens first or with or um (H: this looking again aspect) My sense is that 433 that there needs in looking at those situations that my limited sense of self needed to feel safe and not 434 intruded upon in order for me to then be able to look out and have compassion or look again. And so 435 there's a certain kind of healing or protection or safety that needed to be reestablished in order for me to 436 then um be compassionate or looking again. So I'm not sure how if it's first this then the other. 437 438 H: But I can see the need for this sense of safety and being looking and then to look out and see the 439 other person again like to re spect and then um ... then when you see, when you see the other person 171 440 you're not just looking at the mirror of yourself that um at that point then you have compassion. 441 Cause you really see them. 442 443 Norman: See, I hear what you are saying but (H: or would you say they are almost the same) Right (H: 444 in other words at that level almost becomes compassion. There's a line there's a point at which... ) and 445 understanding that that person is a part of you also leads to compassion. 446 447 H: That's great. 448 172 1 Transcript # 8 Pamela 2 3 Pamela: And I do workshops of effective communication and relationship building. (H: okay) and I've 4 been doing this since the late seventies. I also do private facilitating. Um where I work with people -5 individuals and couples and families. I also do consulting for groups such as doctors and oh I did 6 consulting for college counsellors and things like that. 7 8 H: Okay that's great. And your nationality is American. 9 10 Pamela: I'm wondering why that's important? What the nationality is? 11 12 H: Well, I'm wondering if there is a cross-cultural component to this. If you were brought up in another 13 culture you might have different concepts. 14 15 Pamela: Good point, good point. I was born in this country but my heritage is Lebanese. And ah 16 although I was born here my parents came from there - although they met here - but my ah a lot of my 17 upbringing had a big influence, I was influenced a lot on that culture. However um a big part of my life 18 was also spent away from home. I was in a boarding situation, a hospital situation. So for six years I was 19 mostly away. So the first six years I was home and um didn't have much contact with other children 20 because of my physical disability and then I was away for six years um in a boarding school hospital 21 situation and then I was home for the last six years before I married. So um that's when I think I 22 interacted more with the outside world and with my culture. So it was very interesting. The thing is that 23 um when I was six I could not speak English and when I was six I went away and immediately forgot 24 Arabic and spoke only English because I had no contact with my family or my culture for long long 25 periods of time. 'Cause it was during the depression and it was not possible. So I have a very eclectic 26 background. It's a little bit of everything. 27 28 H: Right. Really interesting (Pamela: yah um hun) And I'd like to ask some more questions on that 29 actually when we get closer to the end of the interview (Pamela: sure) because one of my questions is 30 how you're whatever values it was you were taught as a child has informed your concept that you have 31 now. And I might add that in the area of my focus for my degree is multicultural counselling. So that's 32 where I'm coming from on that - on that question about your heritage. 33 34 H: um Okay well ah what I'd like to hear first is just an experience you might have had professionally 3 5 where it was a challenge in some way for you to .. .to be respectful. 36 37 Pamela: To be respectful? 38 39 H: To be to respect somebody else. 40 41 Pamela: (sigh) Oh gosh I don't know if I can think of a specific but I can give you a concept. 42 43 H: Sure 44 45 Pamela: Um when when I've had an occasional student who ... okay I can remember one in Oregon 46 when I was teaching a class up there um ... .who kept contradicting the concepts of the skills that I was 47 teaching. And contradicted um my whole concept of an attitude toward people and especially young 48 people, especially children. And his attitude was - there's nothing that reaches children so they should 49 all be sent to an isolated island somewhere until they are a certain age and then brought back to 50 civilization. And ah at that time I was not that magnanimous as I feel I have grown to become. And I 51 wanted to kill because I felt that - not really- but I wanted -I I felt that he was tainting um my work and 52 um ah probably leading my class astray until I realized that oh wait a minute - he's in pain. He's had a 53 difficult experience. It's possible even though I'm not a therapist I realized it's possible that he had been 54 treated badly as a child and made wrong. And grew up with an attitude that I guess kids are not okay. 55 And so all of a sudden my anxiety and my resistance to him became very empathetic. And I was able 56 then to validate his point of view even if I didn't agree with him. And it was a nice opportunity to even 173 57 model this attitude to my students to show them - because they knew my attitude about respect for 58 children - and it was important for me to respect him enough even though I didn't agree with him - that 59 he had a right to his belief system. And it was important to realize that we all behave the way we do for 60 a reason. That he was not singling me out or singling out my thesis but that this was inside of him. 61 62 H: So those were the sorts of things you were telling yourself. 63 64 Pamela: Right, right. Yah and he was one of my greatest lessons because I have ah I have ah drawn on 65 that a lot. And actually I have learned now that the students who challenge me the most are the ones 66 who teach me the most. And it has - they allow me a wonderful opportunity to model the skills that I 67 want to teach. Because if the skills don't stand up in a situation like that then I have no business 68 teaching them. So, I don't know if that answers your question. 69 70 H: Well that answers quite a few questions. (Pamela: Oh does it?) I don't have to ah to to ask them all. 71 In that in that um example you were you were very angry and you were anxious those were you two 72 main emotions. 73 74 Pamela: Did I say angry? (H: well you said ) I said I want to kill. When I say that I say that for 75 emphasis. In other words I don't know that I was angry. I was more apprehensive that the students 76 would get the idea that this was okay. So I don't know that I was - Yah (said in a questioning of herself 77 perspective tone) 11 don't (H: Well there was an anxiety there...) anyway whatever. 78 79 H: .. .an apprehension for your students (Pamela: Yah yah right right) but there was also part of you that 80 just wanted to (talked over). 81 82 Pamela: Very disa...yah exactly right I surely did. I surely did. 83 84 H: And um and in your self talk you told me about explaining about his childhood and... 85 86 Pamela: In other words it's a kind of refraining that begins to happen because once the realization is 87 made that this man is not attacking me nor is he really attacking the skills. But that it awakened 88 something inside of him that made him anxious and also it got in touch with something that was painful 89 for him. And this is how he goes about dealing with his pain. By - it's like cutting it out - getting rid of 90 it - putting it on an island. And I realized that it didn't have to represent who I was. Nor did it have to 91 threaten what I believed or wanted to teach. And in fact as I said it was a wonderful learning opportunity 92 for me and a wonderful teaching opportunity for my students to realize to say - how do you deal with 93 quote unquote difficult people or people who vehemently disagree with you? You don't resist them. You 94 make their case for them. You validate their point of view. You honour where they are. And the lovely 95 thing is that they begin then to honour where you are. And that's an easier and more beautiful way of 96 turning a person around if they are going to hear another point of view than by telling them that they are 97 wrong and insisting that they change their minds. In fact the worst thing that a person can do is say 98 you're wrong - you have to think about this differently. Can't do that. 99 100 H: Tends to entrench people in their... 101 102 Pamela: Absolutely, absolutely And it leaves a lot of scars. And the thing is they have to defend 103 themselves because they are feeling made wrong. And I always tell my students "Make them right" How 104 often have you heard that. Make the other person right. Meaning validate their point of view. Make their 105 case for them. Best way to win an argument is to make the argument for the other person first. 106 107 H: How would you connect that whole way of being with people to respect? 108 109 Pamela: Because I first have to respect myself. I first have to realize that I cannot react. And if I am 110 reacting I'm coming from an ego state which says that the only way I can be okay is to have you agree 111 with me, to be better than you um to um like be one up. And the self esteem says I'm already wonderful. 112 I have no apologies to anyone especially not to myself. That who I am is absolutely warts and all. This is 174 113 who I am and I start from here. And the lovely thing is in that state it enables me to see that in the other 114 person - in the ego state I can't see that. 115 116 H: So your what you've just defined is self esteem is accepting yourself warts and all - is what you call 117 self respect? 118 119 Pamela: um hum (H: Yah that's ) You see, so therefore - I'm sorry I cut you off. (H: No, that was fine) 120 ah my concept of respect is coming from my sense of who I am and that is my self esteem. Self esteem 121 says that I am enough and so are you. Self esteem says that - in fact I teach this to my students - I'm 122 okay equals you're okay. And that equal sign is unequivocal positive regard - unequivocal. So if it's 123 unequivocal there's no room - no wiggle room there. And so but it has to start with me. I have to be 124 okay in who I am because if I'm not okay in who I am I can't make you okay. My whole world is not 125 okay. My attitude of myself colours my whole world. It ah defines my whole world. So it starts right 126 here. 127 128 H: And how do you distinguish that from you're from what you call the ego self. 129 130 Pamela: Because the self esteem says I'm comfortable and I don't judge myself badly. In fact I don't 131 judge myself at all - neither good nor bad. I just am. No, it's not a judgment. It's a realization that I can 132 celebrate this person. And this was a very hard thing for me to do bringing in the cultural part of it 133 because it was a very unseemly thing to do to say I'm wonderful. Ah! If I had if I had said that in front of 134 my parents they would have said - "Who do you think you are?" 135 136 Pamela: So coming from the Lebanese (Pamela: middle eastern - the whole middle east you know) 137 whether I were coming from Israel or Egypt or Iraq or Lebanon or Jordan or Saudi Arabia or Yemen any 138 of those or Iran or Turkey even Greece and Italy just that whole Mediterranean whole Middle Eastern 139 concept to say that I am wonderful -to say that I celebrate this person and I love her dearly would have 140 created would probably go light candles for me and pray for my soul, (laugh) You see. 141 142 H: Is this a Christian background? 143 144 Pamela: Mine was, mine was (H: unclear okay) In fact my mother was was in a convent to become a 145 nun, which is unusual in the Middle East cause my husband and most of the people there now are 146 Muslims But my background is Christian. However I don't let that get in the way. 147 148 H: um hum So in order to have this self respect and develop this sense of being okay and of really 149 cherishing yourself would that be accurate? 150 151 Pamela: Oh absolutely 152 153 H: .. .that there was a hurdle for you there - a cultural hurdle. 154 155 Pamela: Partly. A big part, sure. That and also um more than just a cultural it was a personal hurdle. 156 (cough interruption) Also my Dad in his thinking ah thought he was doing us a service and he really 157 didn't. Which was that he used to make fun of our weight, especially mine and so I always felt that I 158 wasn't okay. Because I was heavy and it was not of my doing nor my wish and so from my earliest 159 recollection I have been put on diets and I have been told that I am big and that I amble like a bear. 160 Well, you you couple that with limping and ambling like a bear and being big and it gives you an image 161 that you are not okay. So that was that was something really formidable to override especially as a child. 162 So it was hard for me to know that I was okay. I always felt that I didn't measure up and I didn't please 163 my Dad and he didn't approve of me. 164 165 H: What were some of the things that happened in your life that helped you overcome that and develop 166 that sense of self respect? 167 175 168 Pamela: Being a double Leo helped, (laugh) And I was pretty intelligent. And I don't say that with a lot 169 with any pride. I just say that as an observation because I learned English well and all the surgery and 170 hospitalization t