Gilbert Foley, EdD

The DIR model is an interdisciplinary and inter-professional model that recognizes that every member of the team regardless of discipline holds the potential and indeed the obligation to broaden her/his scope of practice to embrace being “therapeutic.” The therapeutic position draws from the mental health professions and psychotherapy in the universal but does not imply the practice of the particular. The essence of therapeutic position is an affirmation of and commitment to the centrality of relationships and the acknowledgement that it is only in a relational context that any corrective developmental work can be truly realized. The therapeutic position incorporates several important “ways-of- being-with” those we serve. Some of the important concepts and practices that will be addressed in this module will include: the concept of the” working alliance”, the power of presence, what it means to be emotionally available, the concepts of active listening and containment, the concepts of support and “holding,” defining boundaries, recognizing transference and countertransference, when to refer. In a gasp the therapeutic position might be best summed up in the admonition of the late Sally Provence when she would say, “Don’t just do something! Stand there and pay attention!”