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6N2023: Identify Two Needs Currently Being Met In Rachel’s Life: Child Psychology Essay, OU, Ireland

University The Open University (OU)
Subject 6N2023: Child Psychology

Case Study: Rachel

Rachel is now three years old. She lived with her mother and father until she was two and a half years old. Then her parents separated, and her father moved out. Rachel was their first and only child. Her mother suffered from post-natal depression, and so was largely unresponsive to Rachel’s cries or Rachel’s attempts to communicate.

Rachel gets very distressed when her mother leaves her alone but then refuses to go near her when the mother returns. Rachel’s mother rarely shows any emotion and could be described as being flat; she also rarely picks up Rachel or touches her. She insists on a quiet house and doesn’t allow Rachel to make much noise or play at home. Her father takes Rachel on weekends now.

The father is a quiet man but often picks up Rachel and gives her cuddles and tells her she is special and that he loves her. When Rachel is at her father’s house he plays simple word games with her and helps her make jigsaws.

However, Rachel still only speaks in two-word sentences and often sits for long periods of time seeming to stare off into space. Rachel’s father began to get worried when he saw that his sister’s children were running around talking and laughing a lot more than Rachel. However, Rachel seems to really enjoy playing with his sister’s children when they occasionally visit him at the weekends. He asked his GP for advice. The GP examined Rachel and found that she was in good physical health and didn’t show any signs of neglect or abuse.

The GP referred Rachel to the local Social Worker. Rachel is assessed with the father in attendance (the mother did not arrive, despite telling the father that she would), and then the father is spoken to in private while Rachel plays in a nearby play area under supervision.

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1. Needs Being Met

a. Identify two needs currently being met in Rachel’s life.

b. Explain why you think these needs are being met. Make use of relevant theory (e.g., Maslow; Piaget; Bowlby; Erik Erikson; etc.) clearly and compellingly.

2. Needs Not Being Met

a. Identify two needs that are not currently being met for Rachel, and why you think they are not being met.

b. Make use of relevant theory as above as to why they are not being met.

3. Interpersonal Skills, Relations, and Healthy Contexts

a. What interpersonal skills and relations are necessary to meet Rachel’s needs? Consider the skills and relations you or others (e.g., the multidisciplinary team) may require as well as the skills that Rachel’s significant others may require. You might find it useful to address this task by subheadings focused on each member: Rachel; Rachel’s Mother; Rachel’s Father; Rachel’s Family as a Whole.

b. What healthy contexts (situations/environments; e.g., play environments; social outings) are necessary or helpful to meet Rachel’s needs?

4. Strategies and Treatments
a. What overall strategies and treatments (therapies, etc.) would you suggest helping meet Rachel and her family’s needs as you identified them earlier?

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b. Provide evidence and citations to support the use of these strategies and treatments.

5. Contextual Supports

a. Give at least two contextual supports available to Rachel and her family in the community or the government? (Here you attempt to concretely enact the
contexts and strategies/treatments that you discussed in earlier sections.)

b. Provide a link and description of their services and relevance to the issues. Here you should be explicit in how the services or supports will join up with the needs and issues you identified.

c. Consider how this section also links with the strategies and treatments section, thus if you suggested X treatment in theory, you should actualize that treatment here. Inform the reader of the relevance by justifying your supports.

6. Personal Reflection

a. How might your own attitudes, values, assumptions, and beliefs relate to, or disagree with, current governmental policies or child development practices?

b. What are the points of disagreement and agreement?

c. Make suggestions on policy or institutional recommendations that you think would benefit future children if implemented.

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