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Psychoanalytic Intervention with Children of Mentally Ill Parents

Harriet Calvert

Based on their experience with such children in local child guidance settings, the authors identify problems and gather them together into the following categories: containment and attachment difficulties, issues arising from identification, problems relating to blame, shame and guilt, and the impact on basic thinking. Clinical material from two children in long-term intensive therapy is presented. A personal diary account of a fourteen-year­ old boy with a mentally ill mother is also included.

The difficulties which these children experience are described from the intimacy of the consulting room in an attempt to increase understanding and empathy while bearing in mind factors which can contribute to resilience. The role of the analytic psychotherapist as a containment and transference figure in the lives of these children who face the reality of living close to an extremely ill parent is considered.

Psychotherapy Meets Africa
7th World Congress on Psychotherapy
25-29 August 2014, Durban, South Africa
Visit WCP: www.worldpsyche.org

Harriet Calvert
Harriet Calvert
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VideoPsychoanalytic Intervention with Children of Mentally Ill ParentsHarriet Calvert15'38"
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Harriet Calvert

Psychoanalyst and Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist, Dr. Harriet Calvert has more than 30 years experience, offering private psychoanalytic treatment to adults, children, adolescents, couples, and families, including Parent-Infant Psychotherapy.

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