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1993 - The Impact of Unstructured Games of Fantasy and Role Playing on an Inpatient Unit for Adolescents

by Hawke Robinson published Jan 30, 2013 04:55 PM, last modified May 05, 2018 02:28 PM
Ascherman, Lee I. Menninger Clinic, Children's Division, Topeka, KS 66601. Int J Group Psychother. 1993 Jul;43(3):335-44. - The impact of unstructured games of fantasy and role playing on an inpatient unit for adolescents Ascherman, L IView Profile. International Journal of Group Psychotherapy43.3 (Jul 1993): 335-344.

The _unrestricted_ play of such games contributed to the disruption of a treatment setting.

Abstract

Games of fantasy and role playing such as Dungeons and Dragons (1983) have become increasingly popular among adolescents and young adults. This article reviews the negative impact of such games on an adolescent inpatient treatment setting.

The unrestricted play of such games contributed to the disruption of a treatment setting, resistances to treatment, reinforcement of character pathology, disruption of individual treatments, and to the normalization of violence.

When such games begin to be played on a psychiatric inpatient unit or are prominent in discussions of individual patients, treaters should examine them in the context of their potential to reinforce and foster resistance and maladaptive patterns of relating to the environment.

Treaters are also encouraged to attempt to understand the meaning and risks of such games in the context of an individual patient's psychiatric difficulties and of group dynamics, both within the patient group and between patients and treaters.

Title The impact of unstructured games of fantasy and role playing on an inpatient unit for adolescents
Author Ascherman, L I
Correspondence author Ascherman, L I
Publication title International Journal of Group Psychotherapy
Volume 43
Issue 3

Year 1993
ISSN 0020-7284
CODEN IJGPAO
Source type Scholarly Journals
Peer reviewed Yes
Language of publication English
Document type Journal Article
Document feature refs.
Update 2001-08-07
Accession number 13688
ProQuest document ID 57770660
Document URL https://ezproxy.library.ewu.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.library.ewu.edu/docview/57770660?accountid=7305
Last updated 2011-11-01
Database ProQuest Social Sciences Premium Collection

Russell
Russell says:
May 04, 2018 06:29 PM
Maybe if "treatment professionals" understood the role playing as a tool and took responsibility for delivering the correct messages within the game rather than letting kids control the narrative and run amok with memetic brain surgery tools, the outcomes could drastically improve and could, in fact, be constructive. Just a wee idea really. One that anyone with common sense could have realized if they had bothered to actually think about it. Role playing is a super powerful tool. Putting it in the hands of people with no idea how to use it constructively and then letting them thrash around with it isn't very smart is it? If you take responsibility however, you could have an incredibly powerful technique. But god forbid we are allowed to develope our own personal mythology and diverge from the mainstream consensus narrative.
Hawke Robinson
Hawke Robinson says:
May 05, 2018 12:31 PM
Agreed. Research generally shows, especially for many psychiatric inpatients, the key for this modality is structure. The study does use the term state "unnstructured", and of course that is inappropriate for this in-patient population for _any_ activity. They are in-patient because of their need for imposed structure to compensate for their mental health challenges. It was very irresponsible for them to provide such an unstructured approach for this population. Other studies, using structured approaches with the same population, have been very successful.
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