VISTAS Counseling Children and Adolescents

VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.

Jungian Play Therapy: Bridging the Theoretical to the Practical

Eric J. Green


Sexual abuse of young children may produce deep psychical scars: children may internalize the aberrant feelings, images, and bodily sensations associated with abuse, which obfuscates and obstructs psychological development (Allan & Bertoi, 1992; Allan & Brown, 1993). Jungian play therapy promotes psychical healing by emphasizing the salience of the positive therapeutic dyad and encouraging the emergence of the self-healing archetype that is embedded within children’s psyches (Allan, 1988). Once the self-healing archetype unfolds within the therapeutic container, children will play out themes significant to their inner struggles (Thompson & Allan, 1987). By reconciling polarities that surface within the playroom, Jungian play therapists facilitate children’s inner healing by working through complexes centering on internal struggles, which may include the dichotomies of good and evil, shame and pride, and condemnation and redemption (Kalsched, 1996).

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