chapter  3
24 Pages

Applying the relational model in working with Asian immigrants

In Chapter 1 we examined some key psychodynamic concepts and offered a different understanding of the development of the sense of self and coping behaviors from an Asiacentric perspective. We also discussed the practice implications for culturally relevant adaptations of assessment and intervention skills in the helping process. In Chapter 2 we presented the major premises of the relational model which emphasize the therapeutic value of a helping relationship that is built on empathy, mutuality, and authenticity to promote changes and psychological growth of the client. In this chapter, we will discuss the application of this relational paradigm in working with Asian immigrant clients. We will discuss communication between the practitioner and the client and the nature of the helping relationship in the context of Asian cultural values and norms and immigrant-specific circumstances. We will use case scenarios to support our discussion that relational theorists’ attention to the client’s subjective realities and help-seeking behavior as well the practitioner’s use of self in forging therapeutic alliances can be an effective cross-cultural practice model in working with Asian immigrant clients.