A Conversation for 'Bashful Bladder'
Recumbentman Started conversation Jan 6, 2003
I have always thought "aversion therapy" was a way of discouraging unwanted behaviours by promptly punishing them. The therapy you describe is what I would call "tolerance therapy" - but there may be a better technical term?
Mina Posted Jan 6, 2003
I think that that aversion therapy fits very well, punishing is not something that I'd ever thought of as part of aversion therapy!
For instance, if you are scared of spiders, the treatment is to make you face your fear (your aversion - spiders) and overcome it by fear overload if nothing else!
It's possible that tolerance therapy is another term for the same thing, but I think that aversion therapy is the more commonly know term for it.
Recumbentman Posted Jan 7, 2003
I found what you said perfectly persuasive, the type of "therapy" I mentioned sounds most un-therapeutic!
I accepted I'd simply got the wrong end of the stick -- then to my surprise I see that the Chambers Dictionary defines "aversion therapy" as "treatment of a person suffering from an undesirable habit or a compulsive form of behaviour by associating his or her thoughts about it with something unpleasant such as the administration of an electric shock".
I'm not a psychologist, perhaps one should be consulted here (or a google might do the trick)
If you are a psychologist, apologies, and get on to Chambers quick
Teasswill Posted Jan 16, 2003
I'd always thought aversion therapy was as your dictionary describes. I'm sure there is a name for gradual build up of tolerance to remove a phobia - perhaps it's aversion tolerance therapy.
Anyway, otherwise a most interesting article. Strange how shy we have become of using the toilet in public, when Romans & others have had communal toilets in the past.
breakfastlunchandtea Posted Jan 16, 2003
What is described in the article is a technique usually called desensitisation. It is a name for one way of treating phobias: gradually introducing the feared experience, first in a very non-threatening way then more and more like real life. So, for someone with spider phobia it might involve thinking about looking at a picture of a little spider, then actually looking at the picture, then touching the picture, then looking at a real spider in a box, etc. It is a way of helping the person to "learn" that the experience is not unthinkably awful. It can be combined with cognitive behavioural therapy, which helps the person examine their own thought processes and decide for themselves whether their thoughts are helpful or not.
The other commonly described method for treating phobias is flooding. Did you ever see that TV programme "Face your Fear"? This method is quicker but has to be done properly (and not on TV!). It doesn't work for all phobias, for example it wouldn't be a good choice in bashful bladder syndrome.
Aversion therapy, on the other hand, is a way of training a person *not* to do something. Like that thing where your mum painted your fingernails with nasty tasting stuff to stop you biting them. Again it's behavioural therapy and doesn't always work very well (I don't know anyone who stopped biting their nails with this method).
Apologies for any inaccuracies, this isn't really my area of expertise.
Mina Posted Jan 16, 2003
Not my area of expertise either, but thanks for the comments about it. I'll see if I can get it sneakily changed.
Recumbentman Posted Jan 16, 2003
About nail biting: I knew someone who got really fond of - not to say addicted to - the flavour of the anti-biting paint.
As a teenager I bit my nails to the quick but stopped instantly when I started classical guitar lessons. Then I had better things for my nails to do.
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