Crying is the name of the game: Crying as a resource in video-mediated social-psychiatric recovery meetings

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapport/proceedingKonferencebidrag i proceedingsForskningpeer review


In the Danish social-psychiatric practice, relational work is part and parcel of the national rehabilitation program for mentally ill and vulnerable citizens. One setting for the realisation of relational work is the social psychiatric recovery meeting. The social worker’s role in this context is to be a professional social partner, whose ability to display empathy and being prosocial is key. One crucial aspect of empathy is the ‘therapeutic touch’, e.g., a padding on the shoulder or a comforting hug, which is a professional, embodied, and omni-present practice in social-psychiatric drop-in centres. Once the recovery meeting transfers to a video-mediated context, touching is not a possible course of action in situations fraught with emotional distress, and this has positive implications for the participants involved. As demonstrated in a micro-analysis of the emergence of crying in a recovery-oriented video-mediated context, the digital constraints allow both the citizen and the social worker to collaboratively pursue local interactional strategies, which bypass the potential need for ‘the therapeutic touch’. From a practice-oriented perspective, the findings may be inspirational for considering new recovery tools for video-mediated work practices with mentally ill citizens to support autonomy, new social identities, and life quality.
TitelConference Proceedings
Antal sider10
StatusAccepteret/In press - 2024