The diagnosis typically assigned for clients and families dealing with divorce is depression. The symptoms are usually the same for children, adolescents, and adults.
• Persistent sadness
• Inability to enjoy favorite activities
• Increased irritability
• Physical problems such as headaches and stomach aches
• Poor school performance
• Poor work performance
• Persistent boredom
• Low energy
• Poor concentration
• Changes in eating and or sleeping patterns
Long-term Treatment Goals for Treating Depression due to Divorce
• Improved mood and stability
• Prevent further episodes of depression
• Help the client become well established in a new family living arrangement
Short Term Objectives
• Develop therapeutic rapport
• Identify feelings and anxieties about divorce
• Increase social contacts and create a support system
• Develop coping skills to deal with depressive thoughts and feelings
• Discuss the feelings about the loss of the family relationship is it was
• Help client adapt to new situation
• Verbal therapy to discuss feelings
• Play/ Art therapy:
o Pairing emotions and colors
o Draw different representations of emotions symbolically
o Use clay or other materials to recreate story
o Puppets to tell a story
o Board games designed to discuss feelings
o List positive and negative emotions or changes
o Journal feelings
o Unsent letters
• Parent Education
o Teach parents about typical emotional reactions they will see in their children and how to handle them.
o Encourage parents to make teachers aware of the situation.
o Have parents engage in an activity with the children each week, teach dyadic techniques.
Infertility- inability to conceive during one year of sexual intercourse without the use of contraception, or the inability to carry a pregnancy to live birth.
There are two kinds of infertility diagnoses:
• Primary infertility - couples who have never had a child
• Secondary infertility - couples who are unable to conceive or to achieve a live birth after having previous children.
• Lifestyle habits can markedly affect the quality of the semen.
o Alcohol can damage sperm-producing tissue.
o Tobacco decreases sperm survival and function.
o Diet and vitamins have been researched to affect sperm production.
o Sexual practices can be altered to increase fertility.
• Abstinence periods of three to four days produce larger semen quantities and greater viability.
• Certain common lubricants such as KY jelly, lotions, and oils can kill sperm and decrease fertility.
• Can often lead to profound distress for women and may affect sexual functioning in couple’s relationship and is associated with a wide range of factors:
o Physical- hormonal, anatomical, genetic, immune system
o Psychological- denial, grief, helplessness, anger, anxiety, and guilt
o Environmental- work related stress, family issues, gender role expectations.
Goals of Therapy
• Explore their beliefs about creating a family
• Identify and explore feelings and reactions to infertility
• Create a support system
• Provide educational materials related to medical procedures
• Assist partners in communication about sexual relationship