Arquivos de Neuro-Psiquiatria
Print version ISSN 0004-282X
CHAPMAN, A.H. and CHAPMAN-SANTANA, Mirian. The use of humor in psychotherapy. Arq. Neuro-Psiquiatr. [online]. 1995, vol.53, n.1, pp. 153-156. ISSN 0004-282X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0004-282X1995000100024.
Humor can be a useful treatment technique in the hands of some psychotherapists. It may help the patient to see painful life events and situations from less threatening perspectives, and can take the anxiety and guilt out of many difficult circunstances and incidents. Humor can be valuable in talking with parents about the problems of their adolescent children, in working with adolescents themselves, in discussing difficulties encountered in the workplace and in social environments, in decreasing obstructive awe of the therapist and apprehensiveness about treatment, in dealing with problems such as male sexual impotence, and in many other areas. Some therapists, however, handle humor awkwardly; in their hands it misfires or falls flat, and they should avoid it.
Keywords : psychotherapy; humor.