Also called Co-Counselling
See http://www.rc.org[Long description of process that was on this page turned out to be Copyrighted material -- and is easily accessible on the web site above anyway.]
Here's an interesting academic paper about the movement:
It sounds like a really useful approach to the psychological wear and tear we accumulate during life. (Mentally substitute your own metaphor for "accumulate wear and tear" if you prefer.)
And perhaps this kind of half-baked Freudianism is a godsend to the manipulative, the dominant, the controlling and the weak, the submissive, the vulnerable. AFAIK, if one has a condition amenable to a "talking cure", then it doesn't matter which one you choose. It's the talking itself, not the theory, that matters. (BTW, fully-baked SigmundFreud isn't much better)
One quotation pulled form the website
The theory assumes that everyone is born with tremendous intellectual potential, natural zest, and lovingness, but that these qualities have become blocked and obscured...
Really? I'll say it again: ImNotOkAndYoureNotOkEither.
A friend of mine practiced RC for over two years. She left after feeling that her group was becoming more and more cult-like. She felt pressured to give increasing amounts of time to RC: when she left, it was up to two evenings per week and one Saturday per month. After she announced she was cutting back, she felt manipulated and then blacklisted by friends still in the group.
Perhaps this was just this one group; perhaps the manipulation was in her own head. Perhaps AllPanaceasBecomePoison.
Talking to another friendly person about how you feel when you feel that's necessary is probably a good thing. Deciding on some ground rules and structure, and then sharing your experience with other people who do the same thing might be good. Letting the system become more important than the outcome is generally bad.
Distress Patterns (moved from page of same name)
As described on the ReevaluationCounseling web site, a "distress pattern" is a rigid pattern of behavior that has been accumulated by past hurts of a similar nature that have not been sufficiently discharged.
Now this has got to be pretty emotional. How do you get someone you know to share this kind of stuff with the world?