Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity.
Degree: Department of Psychology, 1991, Sonoma State University
Purpose of Study:
The purpose of this study is to use art therapy and sandplay therapy to determine the developmental challenges that are unique or particularly difficult for children who are twins. In my previous work with a set of twins, I became increasingly aware of issues around self-identity that were appearing in the art work. I believed that other twins might share these issues. As part of this study, I have also explored the value of the art modalities to facilitate the development of a sense of identity through self-esteem enhancement and self expression.
I selected four sets of twins for this study. They were
all latency age (7-11 years old), same-sex twins who
were identical in appearance. They included two sets of
girls, seven and nine years old, and two sets of boys,
eight and ten years old. Prior to the art sessions, I
interviewed each set with a parent present using a
questionnaire designed to gather basic information. A
follow-up session was held with each parent at the
completion of the project.
I met with the children for a total of six sessions
each. In the first session I met with each set of twins
for one and a half hours. The following four sessions
were individual sessions of one hour each. For the last
session, the children were asked their preference for a joint or individual session. Three sets finished with
individual sessions, while one set chose to meet jointly.
Sessions were held in my studio in which there is a sandtray and an assortment of art materials appropriate for children's use. One or more directives was given in each session, with a portion of time allotted for free choice. The same directives, in most cases, were given to each child. To minimize comparisons between each pair before both had completed the directives, each set of twins was scheduled back to back. The art processes given as directives were chosen with a focus on providing information about the children's sense of self-identity, self-esteem, and sense of themselves within the family unit and within the twin relationship. The sessions were conducted in a therapeutic manner to enhance the value of the art processes for the children.
The artwork of these eight children supports the
hypothesis that, for children who are twins,
establishing a secure sense of self-identity presents a
difficult challenge. Indications of insecurity,
inadequacy, poor body image, competition with the twin
and dependency were present in the art and sandtrays.
Within each of the four sets of twins there was a
pattern suggesting that the birth order of the twins
played a significant role in each child's individuation
process. Also evident in the work of these children was
the value of the art and sandplay in assisting in the
developmental task of separation and individuation,
which for twins involves the twin relationship as well
as the mother/parent-child relationship.
Art process and sandplay can serve as a barometer of a child's sense of self. Through these modalities we…
Advisors/Committee Members: White-Wolff, Judy (sonomaauthor).
Subjects/Keywords: twins – psychology
to Zotero / EndNote / Reference
APA (6th Edition):
White-Wolff, J. (1991). Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity. (Masters Thesis). Sonoma State University. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10211.1/1382
Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition):
White-Wolff, Judy. “Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity.” 1991. Masters Thesis, Sonoma State University. Accessed May 30, 2020.
MLA Handbook (7th Edition):
White-Wolff, Judy. “Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity.” 1991. Web. 30 May 2020.
White-Wolff J. Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity. [Internet] [Masters thesis]. Sonoma State University; 1991. [cited 2020 May 30].
Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10211.1/1382.
Council of Science Editors:
White-Wolff J. Art Therapy and Sandplay Therapy with Twins : a Search for Identity. [Masters Thesis]. Sonoma State University; 1991. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/10211.1/1382