Behavior Therapy Reaction Paper
Behavioral therapy is based on the idea that all behavior is acquired and maintained through classical and operant conditioning. Behavior therapists believe that problem behavior reflects a skills deficit and is a maladaptive way of coping with life’s problems. The purpose of behavior therapy is to teach the client more positive ways to cope with emotions. Behavior therapy is a structured approach that carefully measures what the person is doing and then seeks to increase chances for positive experience.
One aspect of behaviorism that I don’t agree with is the lack of emphasis placed on the relationship between the therapist and the client. Since I am a preschool teacher I am going to assume my clients are children. This theory states that the therapist job is to simply change the problematic behavior. Although very helpful for teachers it will not be effective unless the child trusts the therapist and is willing to cooperate. It will be very important to make sure the child feels comfortable with the therapist. Too much change and unfamiliar surroundings can cause fear in children. If this happens they will become withdrawn and not make much progress in therapy.
There are a few classical conditioning techniques that I feel would be incompatible with my own counseling style. One of these techniques is systematic desensitation. Systematic desensitization is an intervention designed to help people overcome fears by substituting a new response to the feared situation. I don’t care how many relaxation techniques are put into play I still don’t think in vivo exposure would be very helpful. When using in vivo exposure with young children I run the risk of an extreme panic reaction occurring and potentially causing more fears. If this happens the child will not have a positive healthy relationship with me, thus I will not be an effective preschool teacher. Because of my own fears of children being emotionally distant...