Symposium title: narrative intervention with children and adolescents: building problem-free identities

Narrative therapy questions the dominant discourses about the symptom and aims to address it in such a way that identity is not defined by the problem. This is especially relevant in childhood and adolescence, when disorders affect identities that are in the process of being constructed and can become extremely defining. When this happens, conversations in the child’s or adolescent’s environment contribute to identifying him or her with the disorder, which in turn facilitates the child or adolescent to position and define him or herself implicitly or explicitly as ill or problematic. This results in behaviors consistent with the symptomatic version of the child or adolescent and, therefore, limits the possibilities of exploring more adaptive, symptom-free identities.

In this sense, understanding the construction of identity as a relational and cultural process, which is not constructed within people but among them, from narrative therapy we pay attention to the relational and cultural processes that affect the formation of identity and we work so that identity is not defined by the problem. The four papers of the symposium will address both relevant aspects for the coherent configuration of the identity of the child or adolescent, as well as the danger of the influence of certain culturally available discourses on adolescence and will provide useful interventions to promote problem-free identities in our young people.


Meritxell Pacheco

Ramon Llull University, Spain

Meritxell Pacheco Pérez holds a PhD in Psychology and teaches Developmental Psychology at the Facultat de Psicologia, Ciències de l’Educació i de l’Esport FPCEE Blanquerna, Universitat Ramon Llull (URL). Lecturer in the Master in General Health Psychology (URL) as well as in other postgraduate programs, mainly in the area of childhood, family, and constructivist therapies. She is a member of the Psychology, Person, and Context research group (URL), and director of the Adoptions and Foster Care research line. Reviewer of several scientific publications. She researches and publishes on the narrative construction of identity and the development of the psychotherapeutic process. Her studies are mainly focused on the adolescent stage and family intervention. She has participated in numerous scientific forums, as well as in the organization of different conferences on psychotherapy and constructivism, both nationally and internationally.

Dr. Pacheco combines her academic and research activity with clinical practice, being the director of the IPSIDE center, Institut de Psicologia i Desenvolupament. She is a didactic member and clinical supervisor of ASEPCO (FEAP).



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