Marilyn Riesz, MA, RP - Registered Psychotherapist

Specializing in the treatment of eating disorders

Framework for Therapeutic Approach

I find that using Adlerian theory as my foundation in conjunction with role play, art, and reconstruction is a valuable way of promoting long-standing therapeutic change. When combined, these approaches allow the client and therapist to work collaboratively to gain insight and change underlying issues, and unhealthy perceptions and behaviours.

Clients cotninually comment on the effectiveness of this approach and how they feel happier, have minimal or no symptoms, and are awakened to a more productive and happier life.


Adlerian Theory and Early Recollections

Adlerian theory addresses the importance of early recollections (ERs) in the therapeutic process. ERs create a story of the individual's life, and reinforce goals and behaviours. ERs, dreams, and goal examination can be used throughout therapy as an indication of a client's underlying and current-day issues.


Role Play

Role play is derived from psychodrama. The act of producing and reacting to a role can allow an individual to see a circumstance from a new perspective. This can be a useful tool for facilitating therapeutic change.



Artwork can encourage self-awareness, personal growth, and aid in understanding and improving emotional issues.


Cognitive Work

Both Adlerian and cognitive theories acknowledge the importance of looking at an individual's underlying thoughts and belief systems, as behaviour is often based on thoughts that we are not aware of. Without understanding of underlying thoughts and perceptions, a client is likely to continue to engage in inappropriate and harmful behaviours.



In collaborationwith the therapist, a client is able to alter beliefs or perceptions that may no longer be useful or beneficial to the client. Together, the therapist and client work to re-evaluate and recreate new messages as needed. A new 'story' can be written which incorporates healthier, more desired messages that promote positive current-day functioning.