Sliding doors: Some reflections on the parent-child-therapist triangle in parent work-child psychotherapy

Yari Gvion, Nurit Bar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

The parental presence as therapy agents, namely as a medium and support for the therapeutic process, is one of the paradoxical parameters of working with children. Parental presence serves as a reminder of the need to find a balance between inner and outer reality. The door that is closed in the therapy room leaves a parent on the other side but at the same time provides the child's inner world with more latitude to reveal itself. This paper examines the fabric of relations created in the therapeutic parent-child-therapist triangle (analogous to Britton's conceptualisation of the parent-parent-child link). How does this triangular connection affect the ability to be with the silent self (Winnicott) when the parent remains (tangibly and symbolically) on the other side of the therapy door? This paper presents two clinical examples to illustrate the complex fabric of relations created in the therapeutic parent-child-therapist triangle and the interactions between the internal and external reality of the parent-child relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-72
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Child Psychotherapy
Volume40
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2014

Keywords

  • parenthood
  • psychodynamic therapy with children
  • psychotherapy with parents
  • silent self

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