chapter  4
30 Pages

Psychodynamic and Existential Foundations in Counseling Older Adults

Mention psychotherapy to anyone and the ›rst name that likely enters his or her mind is Sigmund Freud. And rightfully so. Dr. Freud was the prime mover behind psychoanalysis, the foundation of much of counseling and

therapy. The ›eld of psychodynamic therapy has evolved considerably over the past many years, yet to say that Freud’s contributions remain signi›cant is a gross understatement. One of the lasting strengths of Freudian therapy is its focus on depth in understanding humans and on revealing the unconscious forces and meanings that in¨uence our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors (see Arden, 2007). Later life for many is a time of re¨ecting on meaning-what one’s life has meant and what life means generally. Making conscious that which formerly was unconscious might allow a client to make great strides in meaning-making and add to the depth of understanding he or she has about his or her life.