Liberating Role Plays
Myra listens intently in the practice of empathy
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Dr. Marshall Rosenberg developed a therapeutic process during which the Empowering Communication practitioner embodies someone in another's life. These role plays are designed to help people heal and, eventually, come to peace with past or present relationships that evoke pain.
"In the summer of 2007, Myra Walden and I* recorded a healing session ... My daughter had committed suicide at the age of 17, three years before ... We role-played [a dialog with my daughter]. She was my daughter empathizing with me.

For me this healing experience went to a deeper place than I had gone before. I really connected to my daughter's love and her needs, as well as Myra's warmth and understanding. After the session, I felt lighter and more able to give empathy to others...

It is now almost two years after our session, and I still feel the effects of that empathy. I don't believe that one session alone has helped me to heal, but I know that it contributed greatly to me. I'm still sad sometimes about my daughter, I miss her every day, but the quality of pain is different. Regret and guilt are rarely stimulated by thinking about her. The sorrow is sweeter, our love is present."
~ Amy, New York State

*Amy and Myra had met the week of the role play at a residential training. Their interactions prior to the role play had been minimal. It is not necessary for the Empowering Communication practitioner to know the other person in order for the process to work powerfully.
"I recently had the opportunity to both witness and to experience for myself what Myra refers to as 'Liberating Role Plays.' It was an amazing, illuminating and transformative experience for me, and for every person who got to do a role play with her. I had experienced a trauma years ago. In doing the role play, I came to see it differently. I learned things about it that I had not known before. This helped me to understand what had happened in a fuller way, and to lay the 'ghost' of it to rest. I'm so grateful for this work."
~ Lucy, Santa Barbara, California