This chapter forms the second of the theoretical maps belonging to the first wave of counselling practice in that its origins lie in the psychopathology-orientated theory of psychoanalysis. As the term Transactional Analysis (TA) indicates, it is primarily interested in the communication patterns both within and between people. The Freudian structures of id-ego-superego are replaced with the not quite analogous three ego states of parent-adult-child. Concepts of transference, counter-transference and resistance are retained. It provides a comprehensive theoretical framework for counselling that encompasses not only processes between two or more people, but also the relationship between an individual and society over the lifespan. The use of everyday language demystifies Freudian ideas, making TA particularly user-friendly. It is often combined with Gestalt therapy in longer-term counselling but can also be used briefly, Berne (see below) promoting the short-term ideal.The underlying philosophy of TA requires an equal relationship between therapist and client. As clients are considered to have the resources to think about change themselves, they are responsible for the way they live their lives. Thus the counsellor’s role is to educate the client to use the therapeutic process profitably and confront the client when their share of therapeutic responsibility is not taken up (Cox, 2000).
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