It is therefore understandable and expected that in the first session between the “client” and the therapist, apart from the need for establishing the therapeutic relationship, it is useful to help the patient understand that his/her experience is both human and manageable.
It is an extreme relief for the patient to realize that what tortures him/her is not something “totally of his/her own”, for which he/she should be responsible, but it is the manifestation of a dysfunction with multi-factorial causes. To a great degree, this concerns the family to which such a person belongs. It is therefore important to exonerate the patient, because in this way it will be easier for him/her to deal with any prejudice or stigma originating from his/her environment.
It is important to understand that apart from any therapeutic intervention, it would be useful to make a therapeutic approach to the individual’s family as well, if so requested.
Besides, it is a well known fact that the way in which a mental disease may be manifested is directly related to the way in which one is raised within the family, the character one forms, any hereditary burdens, different problems that may have occurred during delivery and the first years of one’s life, as well as different external factors that may have directly or indirectly affected such a person.
But what about prevention in the field of mental health?
Usually, people turn to an expert when a particularly painful situation has been established and they have realized that the problem is not going to be spontaneously resolved.
Long before that, certain warning “signs” were manifested, with which people are not sufficiently familiar in order to identify and react efficiently (e.g. intense and painful emotions maintained for a long period of time, unusual behaviour, etc.).
Traditionally, psychotherapy is a science focusing mainly on prevention.
There are several different psychotherapeutic approaches and techniques, all aiming at a deeper knowledge and awareness of human “deadlocks” and capabilities.