Barbara Cohn, in her chapter Creating the Group Envelope, defines boundaries, discusses the use of the term in group therapy, and delineates specific guidelines proposed by various clinicians.
Then follows the first dilemma of this book, Sizing Up the Group, in which several members precipitously leave a group following a series of dramatic losses. The therapist feels the pressure to appease the growing discontent among the surviving group members and wonders if the time is right to add new members. Francis Kaklauskas and Elizabeth Olson, working in collaboration, recommend that the group leader seek consultation to process the countertransference and understand possible projective identifications in the group. They believe the group will settle down if the leader’s feelings can be metabolized and the group members are encouraged to explore their feelings openly rather than act them out. Pasternak, speaking from a practical viewpoint, encourages the leader to address directly the current violations of the group agreements.