Case Study: Relationship Issues with Parents

4 minutes

“My Parents Don’t Understand Me!”

About the Client:

Neha (name changed) is an 18 years old girl who belongs to a middle-class family. She has studied in a girl’s school right from her childhood. She is currently pursuing her under graduations from a renowned women’s college. She is currently in her second year. As a person, Neha is a little reserved and has a small friend circle. She takes some time to open up to people.

About Her Situation:

Neha noticed that as soon as she entered the college, there was a drastic change in her parent’s attitude towards her. According to Neha, her parents had become over-protective, suspicious, and argued with her almost on a daily basis. Her parents didn’t like her meeting school friends and especially boys and kept a check on her calls and messages. She was not at all comfortable with the restrictions her father had put on her. Neha was increasingly feeling restless and agitated. At times, she used to also answer them back which lead to further conflicts and fights. Neha was scared of her father and believed that her father would never listen to her. Neha assumed that talking to him was of no use.

Due to the constant conflicts with her parents, Neha became stressed and realised that she is not able to concentrate properly on her studies and she is lagging behind in her academics as well.

Since she was not able to deal with the situations and her studies were getting impacted really badly. That is when she decided to seek help from a counsellor.

Our Approach:

Neha came to us complaining strained relationship with her parents and constant interference from them – which are causing stress and anxiety in her. Neha and our counsellors established a working, therapeutic relationship throughout the course of the counselling sessions, following the Carl Rogers’s Client Centred Theory. Based on our initial assessment we found that Neha needed an environment where she would get the attention and acceptance so that she can express herself. Our counsellors provided an unconditional positive regard towards Neha, her beliefs, ideas, behaviours, and ways of being. This lead to catharsis following which Neha had an insight that her parents are behaving in a manner because to them she is still a kid. They are being protective and that is the reason why they are imposing too many restrictions on her.

Our counsellor helped Neha in improving her relationships with her parents. She learnt the components of healthy interpersonal relationships. She was made to think about her parent’s perspective and was asked to write it down as that might help to get a deeper understanding of the whole situation. Our counsellors encouraged her to talk to her father and our counsellors also discussed as to how her father would react to the conversations.

The Outcome:

Neha gained insight and was ready to think from her parent’s perspective. She felt fairly relived after our counselling sessions.  She also mentioned that it’s for the first time that she felt somebody understood her. She also tried initiating conversations with her parents. She worked on spending time with them, started discussing her day to day activities in college, tuitions, etc. She also began to help her mother in her daily chores which helped Neha in building a relationship with her mother and gave her the opportunity to discuss her issues. Neha mentioned that she is still not fully comfortable with her father, but with her mother, things are way better.

Neha was made to draw a timeline in which she was asked to draw/write major events from her childhood till now. Through the timeline, it was also discovered that she was once engaged in self-harming activities – slitting her wrist – but since her time in the counselling, her relationship has started to improve, and she didn’t indulge in any such activities. Neha is now doing pretty well in her academics and her relationship is improving.

Shaifali Verma

She is Masters in Counseling Psychology and also holds a Diploma in Life skills and Reproductive Health from Christ University.She is experienced in dealing with adolescent , relationship issues, transgenders and psychological trauma in relation to cancer and health issues.Shaifali believes in teamwork, effective communication and spreading & sharing smiles.There's one philosophy that she lives by - There's positivity in each and everyone of us, which when tapped and directed correctly, brings out the best in us.Through YourDOST she wishes to spread smiles by letting people share their burden, bring out their positive side and make them feel empowered.