The Effect of Sandplay Therapy for Couples on College Students' Self-Differentiation and Heterosexual Relationship Satisfaction

커플모래놀이치료가 대학생의 자아분화와 이성관계만족에 미치는 효과

  • Received : 2013.07.14
  • Accepted : 2013.12.04
  • Published : 2013.12.31


This study was conducted to investigate the effect of sandplay therapy for couples on the self-differentiation, and heterosexual relationship satisfaction, of couples who are college students'. The subjects were four couples who are college students living in Seoul with low self-differentiation and heterosexual relationship satisfaction. I carried out sandplay therapy on four couples for once a week for 10 weeks, and each session was 70 minutes long. In this study, the self-differentiation scale was modified for Korea on the basis of Bowen's family systems theory (1976), and it was used as a research tool. Yu (2000) and Lee (2000) made a scale to measure heterosexual relationship satisfaction after they adjusted the Korea Marital Satisfaction Inventory (K-MSI). The scale was also used in order to compare pre-therapy and post-therapy traits and identify any changes. In addition, the group's behavior and interactions were observed and recorded in each session throughout the process of sandplay therapy with the couples, and the behanior and interactions were analyzed along with the change flow in the sand trays. The study's outcomes are summed up as follows. First, sandplay therapy with couples advances the level of self-differentiation in college students. Second, sandplay therapy with couples improves the heterosexual relationship satisfaction on college students. Third, the trays used in sandplay therapy with couples showed positive changes as the therapy progressed. As the sessions continued, negative factors in the trays decreased and the trays converged into one. As the sessions proceeded, it was observed that the couples became closer, felt more comfortable with each other, compromised and reflected on their relationship. The study's results show that sandplay therapy with couples increased the level of self-differentiation in college students and heterosexual relationship satisfaction, thus proving the therapy's effectiveness.



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