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Behavior as a result of his own internal attributes, independent of his social context.

Conversely, collectivist cultures view the individuals behavior as interdependent on the social
Thus, it follows that psychotherapy differs in the two cultures
Psychodynamic psychotherapy frame a personal problem as an individuals failure to
come to term with unresolved unconscious issues in the past. On the other hand, helping
traditions and customs in the collectivist cultures frame personal problems in a social context,
mostly in the here and now. Consequently, the foci for listening differ in the two interventions. In
psychodynamic psychotherapy, one listens to facilitate exploration of unconscious processes
(Ivey,1997) while in traditional collectivist helping interventions, one listens to facilitate
exploration of family and contextual clues that affectthe persons expression of self.
Furthermore, there is greater emphasis on feedback and self-disclosure to build a more
egalitarian relationship. Finally, interpretation is usually the extent of intervention in
psychodynamic psychotherapy whereas in the collectivist setting, the reframing of a problem in
terms of familial or cultural issues marks the start of interventions directed at the family or social
To a large extent, the characteristics of this collective culture have been articulated in
Philippine sociology, anthropology and psychology.
For example, the Filipino concept of self is that of self in relation to the other. In Filipino
psychology, this concept is termed kapwa. This term refers to the until of the self and others
and hinges on recognition of a shared identity. (Enriquez,1978). agreeableness in the Filipino is
a behavioral manifestation of the cultural emphasis on smooth interpersonal relations, or getting
along with people (Chruch,1985; Guthrie and Bennet). Hiya (Shame), is one of important norms
governing good manners and right conduct (Jocano).
Filipino helping behavior in a collectivist context has been describe by Decenteceo
(1997) and Jocano (1998). In the pagdadala model. Decenteseo posits that the Filipino is seen
to gain meaning mot only from fulfilling accountability but also from a sense of belonging to a
community of co-burden bearers that in return gives meaning to acts of burden bearing. F.
Landa Jocano, inhis book, Filipino social organization describes providing assistance to the
immediate kinship group as well as the wider kinship sphere as a dominant postulate operative in
Filipino culture.
Thus, it may not be farfetched to think that in the Filipino setting, the helping relationship
may be viewed as an interaction between two persons, keenly aware of their connection to the
society at large. As a result, boundary setting may not be as sallent to the Filipino helping
tradition as in the west. As early as twenty years ago, Filipino psychologists had pointed out that
the goal of privacy is rarely achived in a Manila survey due to such conditions as the large

number of people per household, small number of rooms, and cultural factors related to privacy
(Church, 1985).
So you see that boundary setting is a set of techniques for an individually oriented
intervention. Is it any wonder that it is inconsistently applied in a collectivist.

Filipino psychiatrists apply boundary setting in their clinical practice in varying degrees
of consistency.
Filipino psychiatrists boundary setting practices converge with the western norm in some
situations while they diverge from the western standanrd in others.
Culture, along with psychodynamic consideration strongly influence boundary setting
practices. In situation where the western practice contradicts Filipino culture, the dictates
if culture prevail.
The juxtaposition of boundary setting, a set of techniques for an individually oriented
intervention, in a collectivist culture leads to its inconsistent application.

Action Steps
The question of the applicability of western concepts in psychotherapy to Philippine
culture has long been playing in the minds of Filipino academics in psychology. The clamor for
the modification of western psychological models to suit the Filipino culture Church, 1990;
Salazar-Clemena, 1998) was sparked bay Virgilio Enriquez, whose work serve as the foundation
of Filipino psychology.
The literature has accounts of indigenous Filipino psychotherapies (Bulatao, 1999;
Jagmis- Socrates, 1998); as well as forms of psychotherapy that are considered applicable to
Filipinos (tanalega, 1998). How ever, the search for the culturally relevant form of
psychotherapy continues.
Tailoring psychotherapy to suit individualist and collectivist cultures has been proposed
but found wanting. Although Oyserman et al have recognized that the individualist-collectivist
construct is helpful in describing particular ways in which cultures differ systematically, it should
not replace the study of culture. Rather, they proposed a framework for understanding the
influence of culture on psychological phenomena by analyzing construals of social situation.
Since these construals are viewed from the individual to the social to the institutional levels, the
cultural variables are as exclusively individualist or collectivist. Instead, they are viewed as an
integration of both (Oysserman et al, 2002 cited by Della, 2008).

I end mw lecture with the thought that culture trumps theory in psychotherapy. Boundary
setting necessarily takes on the colors of the therapeutic dyads everyday cultural space. In that
way, they serve as a backdrop against which the therapist discerns deviations.
Thus, Filipino psychiatrists face the challenge of promoting culturally relevant
psychotherapy by incorporating the best of the East and the West. This is a tremendous
challenge, given this caricature of Filipino help-seeking behavior
should the Filipino get sick, lie is cured physically with drugs and medical aid but sociopsycologically with fruits beside him which he may not even eat. More importantly, he has
people: friend and relatives. Even a room in supposedly modern hospital which says strictly no
visitors as you enter proves to be crowded with people (Enriquez, 1977).
Now try setting boundaries in this situation.