As practicing [psycho] therapists and counsellors, we face a major relational dilemma when working with complex developmental trauma disorders, including dissociative disorders.
On the one hand, we are encouraged to develop a therapeutic relationship on which the client becomesdependent for predictability and consistent repair. On the other hand, our clients’ unmetdependency needs evoke their profound desperation and helplessness, which are major triggers forongoing dissociation in clients, and intense countertransference reactions in therapists. We arethus taught to prevent our clients from becoming “too” dependent on us.
How can we reconcile and navigate these apparently contradictory approaches?
This happens because as the person attaches to the psychotherapist and the process, they in effect pull away from the family. The family become threatened by this development and feel like the psychotherapist is invading the family dynamic. Which in effect is true.
Obviously, the psychotherapist has no desire to ‘steal’ the person from their family or relationship, they are only invested in working with the client to banish thoughts feeling and behaviours that are truncating their lives.
My passion as a clinician is working long term with clients, enabling the understanding of family of origin, attachment issues, early childhood ruptures and unconscious processes.
I published Delving Deeper : a book that brings you a frank and understandable insight into the world of psychotherapy, through the eyes of thinking, working, reflective practitioner.