Dibs in Search of Self: Psychological Aspects of the Family

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Dibs In Search of Self is a book written by Virginia M. Axline, who is a clinical psychologist. The book is a report of her one year period of working with an emotionally challenged boy named Dibs. Though Dibs come from a wealthy and educated family, his teachers fail to recognize his gift. Instead, his father, mother, and teachers perceive him as a child with the cognitive disorder.

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This paper seeks to explore the psychological aspects of the family. The initial part of this paper will discuss an aspect of love versus possession, how the two interact and whether they impact on a familys psychology positively or negatively. Consecutively the paper will attempt to explore the impact the relationship between a mother and father has and the functionality of the family as a unit. According to this book, the article will describe the communication between a husband and wife.

The second and the last part of the paper explain whether the main characters (Dibs, his mother, father, and his teachers) went through a transformation. The researcher will also highlight and Identify the crucial moment where the characters changed. Lastly, this paper will examine if the different issues that are dealt with in this book are relevant to our current society. In a clear summary, the paper highlights things that can be learned from this story.

Love Versus Possession

Love has been manifested in the case of Axline accepting Dibs unconditionally. Their love eventually bred trust from Dibs towards the Dr. Axline. It helped Dibs to relax and function normally. The transformation had a felt impact over a very short period. Transformation, in this case, is a perfect illustration of how greater love can psychologically impact on an individual within a family setup. Similarly, it is evident that Dibs has closed up to his environment because he doesnt receive the love he needs from the parents and teachers. He feels desperate to an extent that he symbolically acts out the aggression and desperation he has harbored for a long time.

On the other hand, possession can be defined as a psychological state in which an individual's normal personality is replaced by another. In Dibs case, the boy had refused to talk play or even respond to his environment. His isolated way of life, however, doesnt equal the label of a disturbed child that the significant people in his environment have tagged him.

How the Mother/Father Relationship Affects the Entire Family

The relationship that Dibs had with his parents was a troubled one. It had affected the functionality of the family. However, with Dr.axlines help the improvement of Dibs as an individual eventually enhanced the familys relationship significantly. By the end of the session, Dibs parents were in a position to change their feelings about Dibs as not a mental retard but as the gifted person he was. Dibs was very isolated, and his mother had suffered humiliation because Dibs was not a normal child. With friends always willing to see Dibs and the absence of a place where he would best fit, his parents had also lived in isolation. A psychiatrist had diagnosed Dibs as a rejected and emotionally deprived child. The parents had been referred to a treatment program that had nearly resulted to divorce. They, therefore, had opted to send their son to a private school and excessively stocked his playroom with toys.

Description of the Communication Between the Husband and Wife

Dibs father had once called him an idiot in the way he was babbling. Upon being asked for clarification, on what Dibs was saying he threw a chair and screamed at his father, I hate you! I hate you! for lack of a better option; the father had locked Dibs in his room and broke down into tears. The scenario clearly displays poor the communication between the wife and her husband. Everyone in the family is struggling with difficult emotions, yet they do not have a platform to express themselves.

The Main Characters Transformation and Essential Moment of Change

Dibs is one of the people who exhibit the greatest change in the course of the one-year period of therapeutic sessions. It is fascinating to look at the rate at which the change takes place in Dibs life. He moves from an isolated five-year-old to an interactive genius child after only a year of therapy. It is also notable how quickly Dibs opens up to the doctor, yet he had closed up to his environment. He even would get slightly violent and rush at people who attempted to make any physical contact with him. Dibs also learned to forgive and let go of the bitter emotions of anger, hate and aggression towards his father and sister. Dibs father has had to change and improve his relationship after Dibs have gone through the transformation period. For Dibs, significant moments of change occurred during the therapeutic period. For his father change occurred after the effect of Dibs transformation was felt.

Relevance of the Issues to the Society and Lessons Learned

Dibs case is a representation of the life scenarios that the society is familiar with. The issues put forward in this book are very relevant to the current society. Among the lessons that one cannot afford to overlook the importance of functional family and the impact it has on every individual within the family and also on the family as a whole. The predicaments that Dibs went through were not necessary had the parents and teachers taken more time to pay attention to his needs and provide him a humble enhancing environment. Therefore, it is paramount to avoid the wrong diagnosis preferably to zero.

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