The Use of Narrative Therapy on Paranoid Schizophrenia

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Research suggests that a clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia is strongly linked with experiencing negative stereotypes and an inability to recover. In challenging the scientific-logical practice of diagnostic labeling, which totalizes the person’s experience around the illness, Narrative therapy offers a unique approach to treating schizophrenia by putting the spotlight on the client’s values, strengths, and beliefs. This allows the client to discover an alternative life narrative beyond their diagnosis. This study presents a case of a 40-year-old woman with paranoid schizophrenia. She felt that the people in her workplace were out to harm her so she would never work in her field again. At home, she had also begun to question herself as a mother. Narrative therapy techniques such as externalization, thickening the landscape of action and identity, and re-membering were used to aid the client’s recovery and helped her to shift from a problematic view of her identity. The present case focuses on providing steps to guide practitioners in using Narrative therapy for a case where the client has internalized their diagnosis as their identity.