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1 LETTER WRITING David Nylund. 2 Types of Letters Narrative letters Brief letters Letters of invitation Prediction letters Counter-referral letters Letter.

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Presentation on theme: "1 LETTER WRITING David Nylund. 2 Types of Letters Narrative letters Brief letters Letters of invitation Prediction letters Counter-referral letters Letter."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 LETTER WRITING David Nylund

2 2 Types of Letters Narrative letters Brief letters Letters of invitation Prediction letters Counter-referral letters Letter writing campaigns Letter from the Problem Letter from the Relationship Letters from the Client to the Therapist (self-stories) Counter-Documents (Circulation documents)

3 3 Letters as Narrative Encompass all the aspects of the narrative theory Used to depict the linear nature of the client’s story while showing that that story can progress forward Allows the client to first externalize the problem and then choose how they intend to author their story. Summarizes the session Highlights unique outcomes Chronicles client’s progress To ask questions that come after the session Post-session reflection Highlight client’s quotes that depict the new story where the client speaks about their own skills, knowledges, competencies, hopes, etc.

4 4 Brief letters There is a vast array of content that might be included in brief letters, and there seems to be one consistent theme. The theme is to let the client know that you are thinking about them and that you genuinely care. Often times these letter offer a brief summary of the new narratives of the last session. Other times brief letter might be sent to an old isolated client to simply let them know that you are thinking about them. The act of receiving mail tends to make people feel important. Often used to offer a quick reminder that the client can use the above techniques to re-author aspects of their lived experience.

5 5 Letters of invitation Given narrative therapy is a systems theory it is desirable to involve multiple members of that system. There are often times when a member of the system is not present at a therapy session though their presence could be of benefit. These letters are sent to encourage a person or people to attend a session by sharing some of the new narratives of the attending people with the absent person or people.

6 6 Letters of prediction Therapist writes a new narrative which encompasses the goals and hopes of the client. The premise is that the client will believe the story and the belief in the new story will result in the prophesy coming true. Essentially the therapist writes what will happen.

7 7 Counter-referral letters The new narrative is sent to the person who referred the family to the therapist. This is a way of spreading the new narrative and offering a follow up to a potentially concerned person. (letter to a teacher, for example)

8 8 Letter writing campaigns Co-write a letter with the client to selected members of the family and friends Ask them to assist in a temporal re-remembering and witnessing process through lettered written accounts outlining their: a) memories of their relationship with the client, b) their current hopes for the client, and c) how they anticipate their relationship growing with the client in the future. These written accounts are directed at countering the problems’ strategies and negative professional stories. They are always diametrically different to what had been written in the client file. They re-present a counter file

9 9 Letter from the Problem Letter written from the vantage point of the problem Exposes the problem’s tactics, goals, and allies Leaks the problem’s worry that it is losing its grip over the client Tells the client what the problem’s counter-tactics will to try to get the client back in its command

10 10 Letter from the relationship The relationship writes a letter to the couple Highlights the couple’s efforts to reclaim love’s version of the relationship Unique outcomes Playful Anti-conflict document Counters individualism “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts”

11 11 Self stories Written by the client once they have successfully authored their story in a way that fits their liking. Once the therapeutic process has been successful and the client feels great within her/his new narrative these letters offer significant others the opportunity to read the new story of the client. This new story can include a re-authoring of the past present and the future to anyone the client so desires. The letters are the client’s preferred autobiography

12 12 Counter Documents Documents that signify the successful completion of a goal. Rite of passage Definitional ceremony Circulate new story They are a visual reminder of success. Diplomas/Certificates Press Releases Anti-Problem Handbooks


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