‘The blind leading the blind’: a phenomenological study into the experience of blind and partially sighted clients with a sighted therapist

Rackley, Mark Anthony (2015) ‘The blind leading the blind’: a phenomenological study into the experience of blind and partially sighted clients with a sighted therapist. Other thesis, Middlesex University / Metanoia Institute.

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Abstract

The focus on blindness and partial sightedness and improving the lives of those living with blindness and partial sightedness has increased in UK public policy and discourse over the last decade. However, there has been little focus on the psychological and emotional needs of those living with sight loss and how emotional support services may work effectively with this client group. This investigation, using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA), examines the experience of nine blind or partially sighted people, aged between 22 and 75 years of age, living in the UK who have had psychological therapy with a sighted therapist in the last two years. The findings highlight various aspects of the participants’ experience under four meta-themes: 1) Struggles between the two worlds, 2) Bringing the ‘elephant’ into the therapy room, 3) Non-verbal communication and 4) Verbal communication and the power of the therapeutic relationship. The discussion highlighted areas for consideration for sighted counselling psychologists and other mental health professionals who may work with clients who are blind or partially sighted. It also explores three major areas: (i) for counselling psychology as a profession to consider how it supports clients who are blind or partially sighted, (ii) for sighted counselling psychologists and other mental health professionals to examine their own attitude toward disability and how they work with this in their profession and (iii) for sighted counselling psychologists to challenge traditional ways of working with touch, silence and talking when working with blind or partially sighted clients.

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Keywords (uncontrolled): blindness, partial sightedness, counselling psychology, disability, verbal communication, client, sighted therapist, eye contact, non-verbal communication, society
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
B. > Theses
C. Collaborative Partners > Metanoia Institute
Item ID: 18562
Depositing User: Users 3197 not found.
Date Deposited: 11 Dec 2015 12:28
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:38
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/18562

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