Sunteți pe pagina 1din 68

Issue 52 Autumn 2012

The magazine of the UK Council for Psychother apy

ISSN 2049-4912


of Love

Assured voluntary regulation

Research conference 2012
A snapshot of the day


UKCP interviews CHRE Chief Executive Harry Cayton

UKCP book series
Lynette Harborne discusses her new book Psychotherapy and Spiritual Direction

Follow us @UKCP_Updates

The theory of love
Evolving a theory of love
Constellations and love
Love: where relationships, mind and brain meet
We have chemistry! The role of four primary temperament dimensions
in mate choice and partner compatibility
The joy of love and hate: a psychoanalytic view
How we love
Living body principles whats LOVE got to with it?
Six ways to love
Love in the therapy room
Accepting the therapeutic relationship as love
Love: taking a stance
Therapeutic encounter a kind of loving
Transcultural perspectives on love and hate: the yin and yang of
relationships, within and without therapy
Love, separation and reconciliation: systemic theory
and its relationship with emotions

Cover image: Painting by Sophie Herxheimer (

Feature articles

Sharing concepts to support Black issues in the therapeutic process


UKCP news
A snapshot of the 2012 Research Conference
Assured voluntary regulation: interview
Putting the pieces together
Transpersonal Special Interest Group: second meeting, 20 May 2012


UKCP members
Reparative therapy, psychotherapy and Pilkington
where do we go from here?
Raising your profile
Referral services and email scams affecting members
Book reviews
Psychotherapy and spiritual direction: two languages, one voice?
Books in the UKCP series
New members


Continuing professional development



Diversity and equalities statement

Editorial policy

The UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) promotes an active

engagement with difference and therefore seeks to provide a
framework for the professions of psychotherapy and psychotherapeutic
counselling which allows competing and diverse ideas and perspectives
on what it means to be human to be considered, respected and valued.

The Psychotherapist is published for UKCP members, to

keep them informed of developments likely to impact
on their practice and to provide an opportunity to share
information and views on professional practice and
topical issues.

UKCP is committed to addressing issues of prejudice and

discrimination in relation to the mental wellbeing, political belief,
gender and gender identity, sexual preference or orientation, disability,
marital or partnership status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, heritage
identity, religious or spiritual identity, age or socio-economic class of
individuals and groups.

The contents of The Psychotherapist are provided for

general information purposes and do not constitute
professional advice of any nature. Whilst every effort
is made to ensure the content in The Psychotherapist is
accurate and true, on occasion there may be mistakes
and readers are advised not to rely upon its content.

UKCP keeps its policies and procedures under review in order to

ensure that the realities of discrimination, exclusion, oppression and
alienation that may form part of the experience of its members as well
as of their clients are addressed appropriately. UKCP seeks to ensure
that the practice of psychotherapy is utilised in the service of the
celebration of human difference and diversity, and that at no time is
psychotherapy used as a means of coercion or oppression of any group
or individual.

The editor and UKCP accept no responsibility or liability

for any loss which may arise from reliance on the
information contained in The Psychotherapist.
From time to time The Psychotherapist may publish
articles of a controversial nature. The views expressed
are those of the author and not of the editor or
of UKCP.


Love is...

elcome to this exceptional

special edition of The
Psychotherapist, its feature section
devoted to the theory of love.
Love is a topic psychotherapists
are often hesitant to talk
about. Here we talk about it in
abundance: Love is both ... a thing
and an action, a context and an
organised set of behaviours...
(Levine 2007 pp1) and these
different facets may be seen
broadly reflected in what follows,
which is structured in two
distinct parts.
First, guest editor Dr Geoff
Warburton, psychotherapist and
theorist, introduces us to the topic
in his comprehensive editorial. He


Love is a topic
psychotherapists are
often hesitant to talk
about, here we talk about
it in abundance

summarises some of the attitudes and

ideas encountered in the relationship
between psychotherapy and love,
and speaks of the mystery of this
most precious of human urges. He
then introduces a set of papers he
commissioned from some of the
ground-breaking contributors to the
field, and an interview with Harville
Hendrix the founder of Imago
Relationship Therapy.

Andrew Samuels interview with

Christopher Hampton on the film
A Dangerous Method, a paper from
Isha Mackenzie-Mavinga identifying
significant concepts to be held in mind
when working with Black issues, and
Di Hodgsons article about reparative

The collection of feature articles, edited

by Divine Charura, psychotherapist and
senior lecturer, shows us a different
slant on love. He is passionate about the
therapeutic relationship and the part
love plays in it. The five papers in this
section address how love is expressed
or blocked in the consulting room.
The authors write about some of the
opportunities and risks, both emotional
and cultural, that we need to be alert to
if we are to do our job well.

In UKCP news, Tom Warnecke interviews

Harry Cayton from CHRE, and asks him
some of our questions following the
consultation on voluntary regulation
held earlier this year. If UKCP becomes
regulated as well as holding the
register, there will be changes, so this is
a very well-timed contribution.

Love is embodied, spiritual,

transformative, unscientific. Its
relationship to psychotherapy is
delicate and tricky. We therefore have
to strive continually towards our own
integration, maintaining self-awareness,
mindfulness and our boundaries. To
quote Geoff s editorial, To enhance love
requires discipline.
Chair of the UKCP College for Sexual
and Relationship Therapy (CSRP)

So, welcome again and a warning! The

papers in this edition may change not
only your professional practice, but
your personal relationships. P
Margaret Ramage


Also in this edition are a letter from

Madeleine Bcker responding to

Levine, Stephen B (2007). De-mystifying love.

Oxford: Taylor and Francis

Advertising policy

Managing editor:

Advertisements are the responsibility of the advertiser and

do not imply endorsement by UKCP or the editor of The
Psychotherapist. The editor reserves the right to reject or cancel
advertisements without notice.

Editorial board:

Display ads: For a current advertising pack and rate card,

please contact UKCP on 020 7014 9490 or

Advertising enquiries: 020 7014 9490

Free events listings: These are available in this magazine

or on the UKCP website. To submit an event visit
Limit: approx 30 words; longer ads will be refused
or cut to fit space.

Sandra Fletcher
Sandra Fletcher, David Pink, Janet Weisz
Mary MacCallum Sullivan, Tom Warnecke,
Philippa Whittick, Aaron Balick, Geoff Lamb,
Richard Casebow, Natalie Joanes,


INQ Design Ltd

020 7737 5775


Newnorth Print Ltd, Bedford

If you have a consulting room for hire, you can advertise it in

the consulting rooms for hire section of our website.

Published by UK Council for Psychotherapy,

2nd Floor, Edward House, 2 Wakley Street,
London EC1V 7LT

We can include job ads relevant to UKCP members on our

website, along with application packs and/or links to your own
website. Visit

Registered Charity No. 1058545

The Psychotherapist

Company No. 3258939

Registered in England

The theory of love

feature article

Evolving a theory of love

Guest editor Dr Geoff Warburton woos us into this edition on love and
identifies discipline as a central principle of enhancing love

ove is an issue that has intrigued,

bewitched, bothered, bewildered,
motivated, challenged and informed
the theoreticians of psychotherapy
since its inception. Much has been
written about the dynamics of love in
the theoretical discourse of the early
psychoanalysts, yet there is a marked
absence of inquiry into the nature and
expression of love in the literature of
contemporary psychotherapy in the

Focusing on love
It seems as if the psychotherapy
establishment, as reflected in contemporary
literature, has left the exploration of love to
spiritual schools, self-help entrepreneurs
and, more recently, to neurobiologists.
Notable exceptions to this tendency can
be seen in the writings of the attachment
theorists (where the word attachment is
used interchangeably with the word love)
and the psychoanalysts.


Geoff Warburton, DPsych, is a

psychotherapist, constellations
therapist and theoretician on love.
He developed his approach primarily
through integrating eastern wisdom
with in-depth psychology and through
creating national services based
on principles of love, including for
London Lighthouse and the Terrence
Higgins Trust. He has published widely,
including I live a guide to life after loss

Love is such a
mysterious, paradoxical
and relatively indefinable
force of nature that it
defies measurement and
The few psychotherapy schools that
explicitly focus on love as a key theme
of therapy often meet with controversy
and suspicion in the psychotherapy and
psychology professions. Constellations
therapy, compassion-focused CBT and
Imago relationship therapy are a few
examples. The most senior clinical director
of an NHS mental health trust, responsible
for the mental health of over a million
people, informed me personally the other
day that focusing my approach on love,
compassion and relationships is not
professionally credible.
At a time when the psychotherapy
profession is engaged with the question
of effective research and establishing
credibility, its not surprising that an
exploration of love is avoided or treated
with suspicion by psychotherapists. Love
is such a mysterious, paradoxical and
relatively indefinable force of nature that
it defies measurement and reification;
it definitely is if we use medically based
models of collecting evidence that are the
prevalent tools of NICE to measure the
efficacy of our work.

Understanding love
Most of our psychotherapeutic approaches
deal in some way with the consequences of
the qualities of loving bonds in childhood,
the dissolution of limiting beliefs, and
behaviours towards the self and others in
adulthood (in other words, removing the
barriers to love), and the enhancement of
love in romantic and family relationships. So
love is central to our work.

To present a workable understanding

of love requires us to slip between the
twin dangers of empty reductionism and
baseless credulity and balance a respect for
proof with a fondness for the unproven and
the unprovable (Lewis, Amini and Lannon,
2000: 12). However, even in this balanced
position, the nature of love remains elusive
to us. The Sufi poet Rumi (1998) wrote:
Although I may try to write about Love I
am rendered helpless: My pen breaks and
the paper slips away at the ineffable place
where Lover, Loving and Loved are one. The
challenge could be likened to that of the
quantum physicists challenge to pinpoint
and define the nature of matter. What
quantum theorists have discovered is that
the closer we get to pinpointing where a
particle of matter is, the more likely it is to
shoot out of the field of measurement.
Quantum theorists have also discovered
that particles of matter are wavelike in
other words, their very nature is being and
doing. We can liken this, by analogy, to
the nature of love: love is both a noun and
a verb. Love is not just a thing, a passive
attitude; it is an active, energetic force. The
quantum theorists found a solution to
deal with the elusiveness of pinpointing
the nature of matter by discovering and
defining the laws governing the behaviour
of particles (Cox and Forshaw, 2011). Im
inspired by this wilfully rigorous approach
to investigate the nature of love despite
its elusive qualities. The writers in this
collection have all inspired me in a similar
way in their attempts to discover the laws of
the dynamics of love.

There is a marked
absence of inquiry into
the nature and expression
of love in the literature
of contemporary

Love is not just a

thing, a passive attitude;
it is an active, energetic
Enhancing love
In this collection of articles I have invited
contributions from a range of specialists
on the nature of love. Even though their
approaches are diverse, they all have
something in common. They all understand
that to enhance love requires discipline.
Its not possible to enhance love or teach
how to love with a woo woo attitude. In
their individual ways, all the writers in
this collection have applied incredible
discipline; they embrace spiritual practice,
scientific methodology, phenomenological
inquiry, intense study, routine evaluation of
outcomes and much more. Their discipline
has created the conditions for their
knowledge to emerge and earned them
their authority on love. Its partly due to
their discipline that they are now able to
share their knowledge with us.
From the energetic, lusty, zesty dimension
of eros, through the loyal, sturdy
affectionate dimension of philia to the
tender, embracing, boundless dimension
of agape, we cover a lot of ground in this
small collection of articles. The disciplines
included are: social anthropology, Dr
Helen Fisher; neurobiology, Dr Dan
Siegel; clinical counselling, Dr Harville
Hendrix; psychoanalysis, David Mann;
social psychology, Professor C Hendrick;
counselling psychology, Professor S
Hendrick; embodied practice, Kai Ehrhardt;
systemic constellations, Judith Hemming;
and psychotherapy theory, Dr Geoff
Weaving throughout these disciplines are
the discourses of philosophy, neuroscience,
spirituality and common sense. Consider
this collection as a tasting menu, designed
to whet your appetite for love. P

Cox B and Forshaw J (2011). The quantum universe:
everything that can happen does happen. London:
Allen Lane.
Lewis T, Amini F and Lannon R (2001). A general
theory of love. New York: Vintage Books.
Rumi (1998). The love poems of Rumi [trans Deepak
Chopra]. London: Rider

The Psychotherapist

Constellations and love

Constellation work, asserts Judith Hemming, enables
clients to connect with the flow of love, helping them
find respect for themselves and others
Love is at work behind all human
behaviour and, however strange it seems,
behind all our psychological symptoms.
That means in therapy it is essential to
find the crucial point where the clients
love is anchored. Then you have found the
root of the problem and the start of the
path that leads to resolution. Resolution
also always has to do with love.
Loves hidden symmetry
(Bert Hellinger, 1998)

ere are two examples of highly

abbreviated stories in which,
through a single constellation, a
client was able to reorient themselves
towards life and the capacity to love.

The stories
John reports that he cannot sustain any
close connection with a partner. He longs
to have a family. His constellation reveals
an overwhelmingly powerful connection


to his brother who was injured by birth

complications and suffers from multiple
disabilities. It becomes clear that he has
unconsciously wanted to share (and
therefore alleviate) his brothers fate. In
a constellation, John discovers that his
brother does not benefit from this selfimposed deprivation, and so instead he
promises his brother he will always be there
for him as he now moves on. Within a few
months he has found a deeply satisfying
Sara, an anorectic woman whose ancestral
line had been decimated by the Holocaust,
wants to regain weight and leave behind
her preoccupation with the unbearable
suffering and loneliness of her parents. In
her constellation, she meets representatives
of her inner way of experiencing her
murdered grandparents and asks for their
blessing to thrive. The grandparents had
indeed starved for years and it became
clear to her that she was wishing to share
their fate and represent it, since it was not
something anyone in her family could bear
to talk about. She relaxes and her heart
opens as she sees that, deep within her,
both the victims and their perpetrators
are now dead and wish her well. This
experience helps her to turn her gaze
towards her own future, now willing to
receive help in getting healthy.

An applied philosophy
Judith, a UKCP member, is the founder
of Moving Constellations and a former
director of the Nowhere Foundation. In
1991, she trained in constellations work
from its founder, Bert Hellinger, among
others, and is now a leading figure in
this world community of practitioners
and teachers. Her previous experience
as an English teacher and lecturer in
education studies at the Institute of
Education allowed her to pioneer this
educational work.

Bert Hellingers books have sold an

astonishing number of copies worldwide.
Internationally, there are several thousand
professional constellation practitioners.
They have created international
associations, journals, congresses, and
supported the movement of the practice
into many other fields beyond the
psychotherapeutic. All this has grown out
of the original work of Hellinger, a German
ex-priest who worked in Africa and then
trained in a variety of psychotherapeutic
approaches. The practice of constellations

The theory of love

feature article

The theory of love

feature article
has continued to grow and develop in
the two or three decades since it was
first demonstrated. Hellinger himself
always saw his work more as a kind of
applied philosophy the development
of a systemic, rather than an individual,
lens through which to see the world, at
variance with that of traditional individual
therapy, as well as having a different focus
and intention which one might call
seeing and agreeing to life as it is. It has
become a diverse approach, practised
by many kinds of professionals and not
yet constrained in its development by
regulatory restriction.
By arresting the familiar flow of discourse
interpretations and narratives
constellations shift the therapeutic process
away from exploring emotional content per
se towards the release of hidden impulses
and loyalties within which such content is
unconsciously embedded. In seeing current
problems as located in the wider frame of
space and time, it connects with its many
different roots: shamanism, Zulu traditions
and other western sources, especially the
work of Satir, Moreno, Boszormeni-Nagy,
the primal therapy of Janov, and Bernes
notions of scripts. Hellinger was powerfully
influenced by his wartime experiences in
Germany and his decades as a Catholic
priest. However, constellations now exist
independently of the man who originally
brought them to prominence and are
shedding some of Hellingers unconscious
assumptions and provocative energy.
To summarise, the work offers a group
setting in which constellators help clients
retrieve aspects of the whole setting of
their situations that have been lost to
view, bringing the living and the dead into
mutually satisfactory and respectful order
in the service of the living.

Brief therapy
Constellations are now well established
as a popular form of brief therapy.
Countless clients report a sense of lasting
healing and resolution after having only
experienced one or two constellations
that address their particular malaise or
question. But they are indeed difficult
to explain or understand. They are not
supported by randomised controlled
studies. Practitioners break many hallowed
guidelines on what a therapeutic
relationship should be. The presenting
issue is often contextualised as an
echo of long past events, pointing up

Constellation work
has become a diverse
approach, practised
by many kinds of
professionals but not
constrained by regulatory
transgenerational collective and systemic
All this raises scepticism, understandably.
It seems to make claims beyond the
empirically supported therapies cognitive,
behavioural or interpersonal.
Writing about the practice of systemic
constellations is therefore a daunting
challenge, precisely because it diverges
so far from accepted mainstream practice.
Brevity in describing the approach is
also likely to create misunderstanding.
Constellations challenges us at every turn
as we look at the process involved, the
philosophy that underpins it, and even
the resolutions that present themselves.
The unusual assumptions are more
familiar to philosophers, evolutionary
biologists, epigeneticists, quantum
scientists and spiritual practitioners than
they are to psychotherapists. They rest
on a view of a unified field, alive and
intelligent, subject to laws (or at least
deep habits) that curtail both individual
choice and freedom.

A helpful bridge to the systemic

I have been drawn to the philosophy
and practice of constellations since I
first met it 20 years ago. My practice as a
gestalt therapist and trainer provided me
with a helpful bridge into the systemic
perspective, with its emphasis on the
unified field, the value of experiment
and existential encounter, the practice of
phenomenology and the power of dialogue.
Still, the early constellations I witnessed
back then were challenging. It has taken
me much dedication to the practice before
I have been able to understand the depths
of what resources and supports a process,
which has a lot to do with love both
its most intimate aspects and its most
encompassing and impersonal.
Love is seen as the deepest sustainable

motivational lever that which enables

people to find the courage to act in the
service of a happier life. Other sources of
energy tend to be based on will and create
resistance. But when a client sees that
behaviour theirs and others has been
motivated by love, however immature or
unrealistic, they may be more able to agree
to new perspectives.
We know how important it is for a child to
be attuned to, to be loved. But infants are
also active in their own love impulses. From
birth, they naturally wish to support and
belong with their parents and to play their
part in maintaining the wholeness of the
systems to which they owe their survival.
This love is revealed in their unconscious
loyalties in which they adhere to what is
right according to the family values and
predicaments they are born into, and feel
guilty about if they deviate. Constellations
reveal how children put themselves into
service for their family, in the face of those
tensions, living out such (inappropriate or
impossible) sentences as let me share your
fate, let me carry it, let me put it right, let me
go so you can stay and let me atone. Such
attitudes negatively influence the childs
capacity to make good use of the life they
have been given.

Sharing a fellowship of fate

Constellations work is based on the
notion that humans inevitably belong to
and want to share in their own particular
familys fellowship of fate, especially when
there have been members who have been
dismissed, forgotten or excluded. The work
recognises that humans are fundamentally
herd animals, where the survival of the
herd or group has always needed to take
precedence over the individual or current
Love can be damaged in different ways. We
are all familiar with the impact of trauma,
bonding disruptions and existential loss,
but less familiar perhaps with the impact
of those factors as they have affected
earlier or forgotten family members,
constraining children to represent fates
that truly do not belong to them or their
life circumstances. Constellation work
offers a specific set of practices to enable
clients to re-establish their attachments
afresh and become part of the flow
of giving and receiving love and life,
re-opening hearts that have long been
closed and helping clients find respect for

feature article

themselves and those with whom they

have experienced painful disruptions.
They often leave people feeling peace and
gratitude and a sense of their right place
in life. Such feelings seems to make love
easier and to make conventional therapy
more useful.
As has been known since the Greeks
first categorised the four kinds of love
(eros, agape, philia and storge), love is
not a single unchanging kind of energy.
Love evolves. If we are fortunate, it can
mature from the blind love of the child
to the thrill of personal erotic love to the
more inclusive and respectful love that
serves family and community life and,
for some, to the kind of more impersonal
or spiritual love that empowers the
wise. All aspects of love (or blockages to
love) tend to co-exist and are affected
by what has gone before. Love begins
as a merging urgency. It tolerates no
difference: as it matures, it can eventually
agree to things exactly as they are. Any
psychotherapeutic approach needs to be
able to help clients navigate and evolve
these complex developments.

Constellations asks a lot of its

It must by now be apparent that the
philosophy underpinning the practice of
constellations is complex and takes many
different kinds of knowledge and skill, not
all psychotherapeutic. Resting on these
unusual assumptions, it asks a lot of its
practitioners. It is always difficult for new
ways of seeing the world the creation
of a new gestalt to gain acceptance.
Therapists belong to traditions that
tend to evolve slowly, whereas big leaps
of worldview are hard to assimilate.
Constellations involves several leaps. They
rest in part on the strange phenomenon
of representative perception, where
clients can witness living tableaux of their
situation playing out, helping them see
the world beyond their own particular
and limited viewpoint. Any group member
can stand in to represent an element

The Psychotherapist

in someone elses life and find him or

herself able to experience what uncannily
and accurately feels like someone elses
experience. As the constellation evolves, so
do the perceptions of the representatives.
This all occurs within what has been called
a knowing field, alive and intelligent. It is
difficult for anyone to take this on trust but
all experience it when they participate in a
A constellation can represent complex
systemic ingredients and explore their
varying impacts. The relevant context
stretches both vertically from the past
that is several generations back to the as
yet unborn future and horizontally too,
encompassing many factors including
culture, race and tribe, economic and social
constraints, gender and so on. Clients
naturally want to focus on their familiar
points of view but when the bigger picture
is illuminated it turns out there are many
more respectful narratives that might help
the person feel differently about their
situation. This kind of shift is often valuable
for people whose energy has flagged in
trying to heal at an individual level. Systems
seem to have a kind of independent and
lawful (or at least habitual) validity with a
clarity that shows up in a constellation as
to who belongs and what belonging costs.
Love can reignite and flourish when we
follow these natural constraints that relate
to time and space, the need for inclusion
and respect; it is damaged when these are

Love can reignite and

flourish when we follow
these natural constraints
that relate to time and

The theory of love

Constellators help
clients retrieve aspects of
the whole setting of their
situations that have been
lost to view

part in healing the past is relinquished.

Through loving respect, a line can be drawn
between the issues that have entangled the
family, opening new opportunities for the
client to live well and wisely in the present.
The stance of the practitioner is also
loving, but in a special way on everyones
side, friendly but separate enough to be
able to stand outside the invitations of
transference, fearless in describing what
is seen and moving the discourse into the
clearest primary emotional truths. The
constellation moves collectively, fed by
the perception and experiences of all the
participants and always towards dialogue
with the original elements and family
members. The therapist respects this love
and works to help it achieve its goals in a
better way. For example: I will go instead of
you dear mother or father becomes Even
if you go I will stay. Please bless me if I stay.
Or: Better me than you. I will follow you
into your illness or death becomes I respect
your suffering and leave it in your hands. I
will make something good from my life so
that what you have given me is not wasted.

Drawing a line

The basic therapeutic method is healing

The work then has to do with helping

people find an appropriate place in relation
to their family members and history. Often
this means that clients longing to play a

through love. When you contact love you

are ready for the next step.
Loves own truths
(Bert Hellinger, 2001) P

Guest editors needed

Could you guest edit an issue of
The Psychotherapist? Do you have a
theme or subject you would like to
explore in depth and share
with readers?
Each edition of The Psychotherapist has a guest
editor who writes and commissions articles on a particular
A minimum of 12 pages or 6,000 to 8,000 words are required.
For further details please contact Natalie Joanes at
or phone 020 7014 9490.

The theory of love

feature article

Love: where relationships, mind and

brain meet
For Daniel Siegel love is the harmony of integration. When we honour
differences, promote compassionate linkages and form integrative relationships,
love emerges

ove is a term used in a wide

range of settings, a word with
many meanings, an emotional word
that itself evokes a spectrum of
emotions. But what is this entity, this
feeling, this experience? Helen Fisher,
contributing to this volume, identifies
three dimensions of human neural
processes that involve love: the
feelings embedded in attachment, the
sense of being romantically engaged,
and the physiological experience of
sexual arousal and attraction. Even
the neurotransmitters associated
with these different forms of love
oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin
can be distinguished and their
impact on our functioning studied. For
example, the voles two subspecies,
the prairie and the mountain groups,
have different mating patterns that


Daniel, MD, is an internationally acclaimed

author, award-winning educator, and
renowned child psychiatrist. He is
clinical professor of psychiatry at the
School of Medicine of the University
of California, Los Angeles, where he
serves as co-director of the Mindful
Awareness Research Centre. He is also
the executive director of the Mindsight
Institute, an educational centre devoted
to promoting insight, compassion,
and empathy in individuals, families,
institutions, and communities.

correspond to the presence of oxytocin

secretion and receptors. For the
committed bonders, the prairie voles
that choose a mate for life, oxytocin is
prevalent; for the mountain vole, with
one-night stands, oxytocin is low.

The physiology of love

And so is love simply a physiological
response to chemical changes in the body?
Is love a product of neural activity in the
brain as it is influenced by our somatic and
social responses? And what is the difference
between the feeling of love whatever kind
and the physiology of love?
In my own work, I fell in love with science
at an early age. This is yet a fourth way we
can use this term. Here I mean that diving
into the systematic study of the world made
me excited, drove me to dive deeply into
a range of fields, and kept me committed
for most of my youth, adolescence and
adulthood. I love the knowledge that
emerges with careful observation, with
hypothesis generation and testing, and
with reflection on results and implications
of findings. This love affair made me
wonder at university about how the various
experiences I was involved with, from
studying fish enzymes in their transition
from fresh to saltwater environments
to working on a suicide prevention
phone service at night, might actually be
connected to each other. In medical school,
that love drove me to wonder about ways
in which our relationships with patients
as young student physicians might in fact
shape the physiology of our patients. All
of these ideas percolated in the love of

The compelling questions about love

But what is this love, this sensation
of devotion, fascination, attachment,
excitement? What is this mental experience
of love that drives our behaviour, textures

our subjective experience, fills our awareness

and shapes our longings and aspirations?
After a year of paediatrics training, this
sensation of love of things related to the
mind motivated me to move to psychiatry
training where I hoped to address some of
these compelling questions.
Educated in modern psychiatry for adults,
adolescents and children, these questions
persisted in me. The love of pursuing
the edge of what is known and peeking
beyond that boundary motivated me
again that love drive to obtain a grant
to study how the love of parent and child
shaped the developing mind of the child.
What I came to learn in those research
training years was that the university
was filled with people passionate about
exploration. Their love for asking questions
was contagious. Yet what the university
structure seemed to facilitate was a
narrowing of those interests to achieve
focused results. Practical, purposeful,
planned out this was managed love for
the sake of publication and programmatic
research. These were powerful forces that
EO Wilson describes in his book, Consilience.
At the time the Decade of the Brain was
beginning in the USA and there was much
to explore in a wide range of disciplines,
from neuroscience to anthropology. Yet
little cross-talk or collaboration seemed
to be occurring across these fascinating
fields, each discipline pursuing its own
ways of exploring knowledge, having its
own methodology and vocabulary, its own
conceptual framework.

The mind and the brain

My love of knowledge led to my organising
a group of similarly love-stricken scientists
who wanted to share their passions for
pursuing the edge of what we knew. We
gathered to ask one question: what is the
connection between the mind and the

feature article

But for us, here in this essay, the interesting

and, Ill suggest to you, perhaps most
relevant part of the question is what mind
is. The group of 40 scientists from over a
dozen different disciplines could not come
up with anything they agreed on. Though
each academic had come voluntarily to
address this singular question, none had
a definition of the very mind that they
were so interested in knowing more about.
Descriptions were plentiful regarding
mental life. A neuroscientist said the mind
was simply brain activity, a psychologist said
that the mind is our feelings and thoughts,
an anthropologist said that mind was what
connected people in a society and across
the generations.

A long walk along the ocean

Despite their love of learning, these
disparate descriptions and the tension in
the discussions made it seem evident that
this group would soon disband. As the
group facilitator, I took myself for a walk
along the ocean before the next meeting
and thought long and hard about what
definition I might offer these 40 scientists
that might build a conceptual bridge across
their distinct disciplines. That walk was
filled with a love of each of the members,
and of the group as a whole. What kind of
love was that? I felt a deep appreciation of
their individual work, and felt grateful for
all they had taught me and brought to the
world. I also felt a love for seeing the larger
whole. That somehow, in my blind love for
learning, I felt that together they might see

Mind and mental

processes are certainly
not limited to the head
The Psychotherapist

something larger than their individual parts.

Here is the essence of what I suggested to
them. If the system in question regarding
mind is not limited to the nervous system
but includes the nervous system, then what
is the essential composition of that system?
If relationships such as loving relationships
between a parent and a child, between two
friends or lovers, between a teacher and
a student, clinician and a patient shape
the mind, what would relationships and
the brain share in common? Energy and
information flow.
And if this flow were a part of a system that
was open to influences from outside itself
and capable of becoming chaotic, it would
meet the mathematical criteria for being
a complex system. Complex systems
sometimes called dynamical systems have
several properties that not only illuminate
the nature of mind, I suggested to the
group 20 years ago and Ill suggest to you
now, but they also reveal deep elements of
the nature of love.

Complex systems and self-organisation

Complex systems are nonlinear, meaning
small inputs to the system can lead to large
and unpredictable results. Complex systems
move across time by way of changes in
the factors, or constraints, that are internal
and external to the system. And complex
systems have a fundamental property
called self-organisation that emerges from
the interaction of elements of a system and
regulates the elements as well. This emergent
property of self-organisation is recursive it
arises from that which it also modulates.
And so I said to this group of knowledge
lovers that the mind is certainly our feelings
and thoughts, our consciousness, and our
subjective experience. All of these are
aspects of what we mean when we say
mind. But another aspect of mind can
actually be articulated and even defined.
This aspect of the mind is an emergent,
self-organising process that is both
embodied and relational and that both
arises from and regulates the flow of energy
and information. A shorter version is that
one aspect of mind is an embodied and
relational process that regulates the flow of
energy and information.
With this definition, we can see that mind
and mental processes are certainly not
limited to the head, as they are in essence
embodied a function of the whole body

What is the difference

between the feeling of
love whatever kind
and the physiology of

The theory of love

brain? A simple question, yes? The brain

was the easy part of the query to address
first a complex organ of the body with
over 100 billion neurons linking to an
average of 10,000 other neurons in the
hundreds of trillions of synapses in the skull
encased brain. The brain functions by way
of electrochemical energy flow patterns
involving action potentials moving down
the long length of the axon and ultimately
facilitating the release of chemicals,
neurotransmitters, at their ends, which
are engaged by the downstream neurons
receptors. Thats all fine, and the group
found consensus regarding the brain part
of our question.

and how energy and information flow

through the body. Naturally, the nervous
system, and its skull-encased head-brain,
plays an important role in mind. But the
mind is more than just bodily functions: the
mind is also embedded in our relationships
with people, with the planet.

A working definition
One hundred per cent of the 40 academics
voted in favour of this working definition
of the mind, and the group went on to
meet for four and a half years. Since that
time, over these two decades, I have had
the opportunity to query different groups
around the globe. I have asked if they ever
had been given even a single lecture on
what the mind is. For over 100,000 mental
health professionals, over 96 per cent
said no. And of over 5,000 schoolteachers,
the number is about the same. Ive asked
individual department chairs from a
wide range of fields, from philosophy to
psychology, neuroscience to anthropology,
and the response has been uniform: there
is no definition of the mind, according to
these leaders reports, in our academic
disciplines that focus on mental life.
And so my love of learning takes us on
a wild journey into unforeseen facts to
address our basic question here: what is
love? The neural correlates of this thing
called love we can identify, whether
chemical or anatomic, focusing on sex,
romance and attachment. Perhaps even
love of learning could be seen to involve
the dopamine reward circuits and one
might say we fall in love with what we feel
rewarded to do, based on dopamine and
the head-brain. No one would fault that line
of reasoning.

Embodied and embedded

But I think love is not the same as
hormones, neurotransmitters, and
circuitry. It may rely on these, yes. But Id
like to suggest to you that the study of
relationships our other dimension of
the embodied and relational process that
we are defining as the mind reveals an
equally important aspect of the mental

The theory of love

feature article
process called love. Saying it is of the mind,
that is mental, means from this perspective
called interpersonal neurobiology which
attempts to combine all disciplines of
science into one perspective, that we
must always seek both the embodied
and the embedded nature of mind. Mind
emerges in contexts internal regarding
our physiology, and external in our
being socially embedded. Embodied and
embedded the mind is.
Love as a mental process, Ill propose to you,
emerges from a fundamental process called
integration. Integration is the linkage of
differentiated parts of a system. Integration
leads to harmony; impaired integration
leads to chaos and/or rigidity. Love is the
harmony of integration. When we honour
differences and promote compassionate
linkages, love emerges. Love can thus
arise in various relationships that involve
attachment, romance, sexuality, learning,
professional pursuits, athletics and spiritual
communities. A relationship is defined in
this model of interpersonal neurobiology as
a pattern of shared energy and information
flow. When these relationships are
integrated, love emerges. The embodied
brain responds to integrated relationships
with the activation of integrative circuits
ones that link widely separated regions
to each other. For example, attachment
relationships can be seen to promote
the growth of integrative circuits in the
prefrontal region, the hippocampus and
the corpus callosum that co-ordinate
and balance the nervous system (Siegel,
2012a,b). Therapeutic interventions that
promote seeing the mind of another
person mindsight with empathy and
compassion offer integrative experiences
that promote healing. Love is healing
because love promotes integration. P

We have chemistry!
the role of four primary
temperament dimensions
in mate choice and partner
Dr Helen Fisher approaches choice of mate from
the perspective of biology, asserting that four neural
systems are regularly associated with a constellation
of personality traits

assionate love, obsessive love,

being in love, whatever you
wish to call it. Romantic love: a
cross-cultural phenomenon. Love
songs, poems, novels, plays, movies,
operas, ballets, myths, legends: the
world is littered with the artifacts
of this human passion. It begins as
the lover starts to regard another as
special, unique. Engulfed in energy
and ecstasy, the lover plunges into

Helen Fisher

And at the core of human romantic love

is a profound preference for a particular
individual; no one else will do.

Psychological and social forces

driving mate choice

Fisher H (2012). This volume.
Siegel DJ (2012a). The developing mind [2nd ed].
New York: Guilford Press.
Siegel DJ (2012b). Pocket guide to interpersonal
neurobiology: an integrative handbook of the
mind. New York: WW Norton.
Siegel DJ (2010a). Mindsight: the new science of
personal transformation. New York: Bantam/
Random House.
Siegel DJ (2010b). The mindful therapist:
a clinicians guide to mindsight and neural
integration. New York: WW Norton.
Wilson EO (1998). Consilience: the unity of
knowledge. New York: Vintage.

despair at the slightest adversity.

Physical separation or social barriers
heighten their romantic passion, what
I call frustration attraction. Many
are willing to change their habits or
beliefs, even die for this special other.
The besotted thinks obsessively
about him or her, known as intrusive
thinking; and they crave emotional
union with the beloved. Indeed, this
passion arises from primitive brain
pathways for wanting (Fisher et al,
2005, 2010). It is a drive a drive to
pursue lifes greatest prize: a mating
partner (Fisher, 2004).

Helen, who has a PhD in biological

anthropology, is a research professor
and member of the Centre for Human
Evolution Studies in the Department of
Anthropology, Rutgers University and
chief scientific advisor to the internet
dating site, She has
conducted extensive research and
written five books on the evolution and
future of human sex, love, marriage,
gender differences in the brain and how
your personality type shapes who you
are and who you love.

Many social, economic, psychological

and biological forces contribute to mate
preference. We tend to gravitate to
someone with the same socio-economic
and ethnic background, with a similar level
of education, intelligence and physical
attractiveness; a partner who shares our
religious and social values; and someone
who can provide the lifestyle we seek.
Timing and proximity contribute. And
some psychologists believe we gravitate to
someone similar to the parent with whom
we have unresolved issues; who can provide
the type of attachment we had with

mother; or a mate who reflects the values

and interests of our childhood friends
(See Pfaff and Fisher, 2012). But academics
dont agree on the role of personality in
mate choice. Some report we are attracted
to those with similar personality traits;
others conclude that opposites attract; still
others maintain neither play a role. So I
approached mate choice from a different
perspective: biology.

Four primary temperament

Personality is composed of two basic
types of traits: those an individual acquires
through experience, traits of character; and
those with biological underpinnings, traits
of temperament. Traits of temperament
are heritable, relatively stable across the
life course and linked to specific genes,
hormones and/or neurotransmitter systems.
Indeed, some 50 per cent of who we are
stems from our biology. So I culled from
the academic literature those personality
traits currently linked with any physiological
foundations. Then I designed a
questionnaire to measure ones expression
of these traits and put this questionnaire on
an internet dating site. Last, in a sample of
28,000 men and women on this dating site, I
watched who chose whom to date.
Only four neural systems are regularly
associated with a constellation of
personality traits (see Fisher, 2009,
2012; Fisher et al 2010). Variations in the
dopamine system have been linked with
novelty, experience and adventure seeking,
susceptibility to boredom, impulsivity,
energy and enthusiasm. People expressive
of certain genes in the dopamine system
tend to lack introspection; they look out not
in. These men and women are also often
intellectually curious, mentally flexible and
creative. So I called this style of thinking and
behaving curious/energetic and dubbed
them Explorers.
The suite of traits associated with specific
activities and genes in the serotonin
system include sociability, caution (harm
avoidance), less anxiety and more close
friends. Elevated activity in the serotonin
systems is also linked with observing social
norms, following the rules, respecting

It is a drive a drive to
pursue lifes greatest prize:
a mating partner
The Psychotherapist

authority, orderliness, adherence to plans,

methods and habits, self-control, precision,
interest in details, conscientiousness, figural
and numeric creativity, and religiosity.
So I designated this trait constellation
the cautious/social norm compliant
temperament dimension and dubbed those
particularly expressive of this suite of traits
Prenatal endogenous testosterone priming
is linked with enhanced visual-spatial
perception and a keen understanding of
rule-based systems, from mechanics to
computers, maths, engineering or music.
Those expressive of testosterone regularly
exhibit acute attention to details and
have deep but narrow interests. They also
tend to be less socially aware, with poorer
emotion recognition, less eye contact,
less verbal fluency, reduced empathy and
extreme sensitivity to rank. Yet they are
often self-confident, forthright, assertive
and emotionally contained, although they
also experience more emotional flooding,
particularly rage. I designated this trait
constellation the analytical/tough-minded
temperament dimension and dubbed
those particularly expressive of this trait
constellation Directors.
Prenatal endogenous oestrogen priming
is associated with contextual, holistic and
long-term thinking, as well as linguistic
skills, agreeableness, co-operation, theory
of mind (intuition), empathy and nurturing.
Traits associated with oestrogen activities
also include generosity and trust, the drive
to make social attachments, heightened
memory for emotional experiences,
keen imagination and mental flexibility.
Oxytocin, closely related to oestrogen, is
also associated with several prosocial traits,
including trust, reading emotions in others
and theory of mind. So I designated this
trait constellation the prosocial/empathetic
temperament dimension and dubbed those
predominantly expressive of this suite of
trait Negotiators.

The questionnaire
My final questionnaire consisted of 56
statements. Data were collected using the
US internet dating site,, until
reliability was obtained in a US sample
of 39,913 anonymous men and women. I
then used eigen analysis on an additional
set of 100,000 men and women. All
individuals expressed all four temperament
dimensions, yet individuals varied in the

Academics dont agree

on the role of personality
in mate choice
degree to which they expressed each.
Then, in a random sample of 28,128
heterosexual anonymous adults on the
same dating website, I watched who chose
whom to date. And because men and
women often make up their minds about
whether an individual is an appropriate
long-term partner within the first few
minutes of meeting him or her (Sunnafrank
and Ramirez, 2004), I felt an investigation of
initial attraction was an appropriate focus
for understanding a core aspect of mate
choice, its beginning.

Mate choice
Men and women who were primarily
novelty-seeking, energetic, curious and
creative were statistically significantly
more drawn to those who shared these
traits, while those who were primarily
conventional, cautious and rule following
were also drawn to individuals like
themselves. But those who were more
analytical, tough minded, direct and
decisive were disproportionately attracted
to their opposite, those who were
imaginative, intuitive, compassionate and
socially skilled; and vice versa. In short,
Explorers preferentially sought Explorers,
Builders sought other Builders, and
Directors and Negotiators were drawn to
one another.
Why does similarity attract in some cases
while opposites attract in others? Perhaps
these human appetites are primordial
reproductive mechanisms that evolved
to insure the survival of the young. Take
a partnership between a Director and a

Director and Negotiator match

These are very different styles of thinking
and behaving, yet the Director and
Negotiator have important things in
common. Foremost, their thinking meshes.
Both dislike wasting time on irrelevant or
superficial conversations, and both like to
discuss abstract concepts and generate
theories. Yet the Negotiator sees the big
picture, while the Director is likely to focus
on smaller pieces of the puzzle; so both
can impress. They are also likely to make
decisions well together. The Negotiator will

The theory of love

feature article

The theory of love

feature article
see all the angles, while the Director will
be decisive. Moreover, the Director needs
the Negotiators empathy, verbal acuity
and people skills, while the Negotiator can
marvel at the Directors candor, their goaloriented focus and their gift of knowing
their own mind.
Problems can emerge, however. Directors
strive for efficiency and logic, a trait that can
disappoint the expressive, tenderhearted
Negotiator. Directors dont like redundancy
either; they are not likely to say I love you
regularly or respond to other loving rituals
the Negotiator needs to feel connected.
Moreover, Directors admire self-control,
so if the Negotiator becomes a drama
queen (or king), the Director may retreat
into hostile silence. The Director can also
become impatient with the Negotiators
intuitive side, regarding it as airy nonsense.
Meanwhile, the Negotiator may find the
Directors insistence on tough-minded
logic irritating, particularly if it tramples on
someones feelings.
But when the Director and Negotiator pool
their complementary traits, they are likely to
be an effective team for raising young.

Builder and Builder match

If Directors and Negotiators are pooling
different resources to rear their young,
Builders appear to capitalise on many
shared strengths. Builders tend to be calm,
precise, managerial and social; both like
building community ties. And because
Builders are modest, civic-minded and often
popular, two Builders can create a wide,
stable, social network. Nor are these men
and women impulsive with their money,
actions or feelings; security is important
to both. Moreover, Builders are traditional.
Duty, loyalty, patience, persistence and
service are their strong suits, so both are
likely to be devoted to domestic stability,
overlooking their differences to make the
marriage last.
But Builders can be moralistic: both are
likely to believe there is a right thing to
do and a right way of doing it. And both
can be critical. So Builders are likely to
bicker over trivial matters, such as how
to do the dishes. And Builders refuse to
compromise their standards: both can be
stubborn. Moreover, Builders are the least
sexual of the four broad styles of thinking
and behaving. So sex and the emotional
closeness it often brings can take a back
seat to their individual schedules.


I felt an investigation
of initial attraction was
an appropriate focus for
understanding a core
aspect of mate choice
Nevertheless, with two Builders, humanity
has evolved another stable strategy for

Explorer and Explorer match

Explorers are curious. They have many
interests: they love to learn, and they
regularly seek novelty and adventure.
Moreover, Explorers are likely to be impulsive,
high energy, flexible, irreverent and very
interested in sex. So two Explorers can
have great fun together. They wont argue
over lifes little chores: when to take out the
garbage is likely to be immaterial to both.
They arent likely to quarrel about money
either, as most believe cash should be used
to fulfil their dreams. Explorers dont follow
schedules or prescribed ways of doing
things, unless necessary, so neither will
be fussy about rules either. Explorers are
optimists. And their positivity, flexibility and
mutual irreverence enable these couples to
keep their spirits up when life is strained.
But two Explorers can find themselves in
disastrous situations financial or physical
because both are daring and impulsive.
And what they gain in intellectual and/
or physical adventure, they can lose in
emotional intimacy because Explorers are
wildly independent even from a mate.
Explorers arent generally introspective
either. So two Explorers can leave serious
family issues unresolved. Explorers also tend
to be charismatic and flirtatious, so they
can stumble into extra-marital romantic
situations. They are prone to addiction, too.
And Explorers can become restless and
hanker to move on as the novelty wears off.
Yet this restlessness may be their biological
strength. I suspect this type is more prone
to making a series of partnerships, hence
producing more varied young another
viable reproductive strategy.

Other matches
But what happens when an Explorer falls
in love with a Builder? One is reckless,
the other cautious; one likes novelty, the
other basks in the familiar. Or when two
Directors tie the knot? Both are sceptical,

competitive and have poorer people skills.

Can two Negotiators ever make a decision?
Both vacillate. And how will someone
predominantly expressive of both Explorer
and Builder traits cope with someone who
is largely a Director and Negotiator? Every
match will have different joys and sorrows
(see Fisher, 2009). Moreover, each of us is
a unique combination of these four broad
biological styles of thinking and behaving.
In fact, in my most recent study of 100,000
individuals, no two people answered these
56 questions the same way.
Nevertheless, each of these 100,000 men
and women expressed these four broad
personality constellations in some way:
biological patterns to human personality
exist. So when a couple walks into the
therapists office, they come not only
with luggage from their childhood but
with biologically based variations in
whom and how they love. I believe these
predispositions are worth knowing as the
couple therapist embarks upon the journey
into their clients hearts. P

Fisher HE (2012). Serial monogamy and
clandestine adultery: evolution and
consequences of the dual human reproductive
strategy. In S Craig Roberts (ed). Applied
evolutionary psychology. Cambridge University
Press, pp139151.
Fisher HE (2009). Why him? Why her? New York:
Henry Holt.
Fisher HE (2004). Why we love. New York: Henry
Fisher H, Aron A and Brown LL (2005). Romantic
love: an fMRI study of a neural mechanism for
mate choice. Journal of Comparative Neurology,
493, pp5862.
Fisher HE, Brown LL, Aron A, Strong G and
Mashek D (2010). Reward, addiction, and
emotion regulation systems associated with
rejection in love. Journal of Neurophysiology, 104,
Fisher HE, Rich J, Island HD and Marchalik
D (2010). The second to fourth digit ratio:
a measure of two hormonally-based
temperament dimensions. Personality and
Individual Differences, 49(7), 773777.
Pfaff D and Fisher HE (2012). Generalized brain
arousal mechanisms and other biological,
environmental and psychological mechanisms
that contribute to libido. In A Fotopoulou, D
Pfaff, MA Conway (eds). From the couch to the
lab: trends in neuropsychoanalysis. Cambridge
University Press, pp7786.
Sunnafrank M and Ramirez A (2004). At first
sight: persistent relational effects of getacquainted conversations. Journal of Social and
Personal Relationships, 21(3), pp361379.

The joy of love and hate:

a psychoanalytic view
David Mann observes that the wish for love endures despite repeated
disappointments. He places the experience of both love and hate well within the
realms of the erotic, the sexual in the broadest sense

here is no final truth about love

and hate that I am about to
distil. Indeed, it has been known for
thousands of years that there are
many kinds of love. For example, the
ancient Greeks made a distinction
between agape (brotherly love), eros
(sexual love) and philein (love of truth
or knowledge). Though less has been
written about hate, it is reasonable to
wonder that there are many kinds of
hate as well. Presumably, there is at
least the hatred of your brother, exlover and certain types of knowledge
(as when regimes burn books), and
these types of hatred will be as varied
as different types of love.
There is no agreed perspective within
psychoanalysis on love and hate, only

David Mann

David is psychoanalytic psychotherapist

and member of the London Centre
for Psychotherapy and is registered
with both the BPC and UKCP. He is
a consultant psychotherapist in the
NHS and works in private practice as
a therapist and supervisor; he is also a
musician, song-writer and a registered
art therapist. He has published
extensively in leading psychotherapy
journals and runs a critically acclaimed
workshop around the UK and Europe.

The Psychotherapist

how each author sees it. I am a relational

Freudian (which some people think is a
contradiction in terms!) and what follows
will either clarify or further obfuscate what
I mean about love and hate from that
perspective. This article both recaps and
extends my previous writing about love and
hate (Mann, 2002).

The prototype of love and hate

Unlike most psychoanalysts, Freud wrote
a lot about love and hate. His views
evolved over time. In 1915 he linked love
to pleasure: if the object brings pleasure,
we love it; if the object brings unpleasure,
we feel repulsion and hate it. In the early
stages, love uses incorporation and
devouring, so is hardly distinguishable
from hate in its attitude to the object. By
1921, Freud is thinking about how easily
sensual love can be extinguished once
satisfied, though it may become enduring
when mixed with affection. In addition, he
links love to narcissism: the object we love
has qualities to which we aspire and the
ego enriches itself with the properties of
the other. Writing in 1930, Freud wonders
why, given all the problems it brings, love
remains so popular. By the time of his final
writings in 1938, he describes the babys
relation to its mother not just in terms
of nourishment but also as the original
source of excitement, both pleasurable and
unpleasurable, the first and the strongest
love-object and the prototype of all
future love relations. I would add that, by
implication, it is also the prototype of all
future hate relations. All expressions of love
generally come under the umbrella of eros.
Eros leads us into development, complexity
and unity. It binds, bonds, creates and is also
the mischief maker (Freud, 1923).
Freuds idea of the death instinct lends
itself to theories about destructiveness,

I would place everything

Freud attributes to the
death instinct as being
aspects of eros
which is not the same as expressions
of hatred, but clearly there is overlap.
According to Freud, the death instinct leads
to disunity, destruction and the desire to be
at peace. In my opinion, the death instinct
is a blind alley that diverted Freud. I would
place everything he attributes to the death
instinct as being actually aspects of eros, a
darker side of eros or the shadow of eros.
There can be little doubt that hating and
destructiveness can have an intensely
complicating and binding affect. For
example, the Oedipus triangle originates all
the primal incestuous and aggressive love
and hate feelings: in any such triangle we
may wish for whatever it takes to keep our
rival away from the treasured object of our
love. What I am suggesting here is that with
love there is always ample opportunity to
find expression of hate and destructiveness.

The risk of potential hurt

In addition, there is the other well-known
relation between love and hate: the
transformation of love into hate (although
occasionally we do see hate turn into love).
Love can make us very vulnerable to the
one we love: the object of our love might
not love us back, may hurt or reject us, or
die. Not all love endures. The transformation
of love into hate is often helped along
the way if the love feels betrayed, or
humiliated, shamed or deserted. Love
makes us vulnerable and therefore highly
susceptible to hurt. I have described
elsewhere (Mann, 2008) how this influences
negative therapeutic reaction. We see the
true binding power of the dark side of eros


The theory of love

feature article

The theory of love

feature article
when such love turns to hatred of the one
we formerly loved. Love could be described
as the risk of potential hurt.
Does love or hate always have to be
ambivalent? The form nearest to pure
love or pure hate is usually found only as
a result of splitting. The Kleinian theory
is useful here to describe the splitting of
love and hate, which relies on a primitive
mechanism to keep each feeling asunder.
Such splitting is easy enough to spot in all
forms of fundamentalism where good and
bad are clearly demarcated and neither
ambivalence nor ambiguity is tolerated.
If love and hate are not just a result of
splitting then we must allow for a more
mature form: a developmental progression
that allows for a healthy form of love and
hate; mature love and hate are less split
and more ambivalent. To continue with
the Kleinian view for a moment, a more
developmentally advanced form of love
and hate results from the depressive
position. This kind of love and hate is more
ambivalent and more intermixed. In a
developed, mature mind, expressions of
hate/destructiveness produce guilt, which
leads us to want to make reparation. I
am rather ambivalent about this part of
the Kleinian theory since it takes a moral
stance, implying that aggression is only of
value if we can be led to make reparation.
This does not allow for the dark side of
eros. Perhaps I can put this more starkly:
we need to account for the pleasure, the
excitement, to be had from mature hate and

Recognition of differences
Winnicott (1958) allows us to see that not all
differences need to be reduced to splitting.
Indeed, the recognition of differences is an
act of maturity: we are not all the same in
relation to one another. While it is easy as
therapists to consider a healthy notion of
love, it is more difficult to envision a healthy
model of hate that feels both comfortable
and not moralistically disapproving. The
mature recognition of difference must
still have emotions. It is hard to see how
a universal neutrality in relation to what
is different can represent an emotional
maturity. We may still love, hate or feel

Love can make us very

vulnerable to the one
we love

indifferent to what we recognise as the

other. Goldwater (2007) encourages us
to think afresh our ideas on violence with
the provocative title, The joy of violence. In
addition to the joy of sex or the joy of love,
can we think about the joy of hate, the joy
of destruction? I begin to think that I am no
longer talking about the dark side of eros,
the shadows of eros, the other face of eros,
as though eros has two faces, a Janus head.
What I wish to imply is that it is just all eros:
sometimes we feel comfortable with it and
sometimes not. Eros has a human face, and
like all faces it can have many expressions.
That thought brings us much closer to
Freuds description of eros as a mischief
Love and hate now become the dynamism
that energises eros: unity/disunity,
creativity/destructiveness, complexity/
peacefulness are no longer competing,
rival instincts but the stuff of the inherent
contradictions and conflict, unity and
disunity within eros itself.
Part of what is implied in this line of
thought is that outside the realms of
splitting or wishful thinking we can never
have a world that is either all love or all hate.
We see this often enough with our patients
who were not loved as children, suffered
neglect, have only had abusive relationships
as adults, yet still we frequently encounter
their hope of finding love somewhere. There
seems to be an enduring desire for and
hope for/expectation of love. Sometimes
the desire for love endures despite the
experience of achieving or satisfying
it. In fact, if I am honest with the reader
(and myself ), I wanted to write the great
mystery of love is its continuing desirability
despite the difficulty in its attainment. (I can
imagine my wife having something to say
about that though!) This is not a statement
of a killjoy attitude or pessimism. I would
suggest it has more to do with hope. Love
contains such hurt and pain along the
way, yet the wish for love endures despite
disappointments from experience.

The role of the unconscious

A concept not yet integrated into this article
is the role of the unconscious. The image
of blindfolded Cupid encapsulates the
involuntary aspect of falling in love. It also
seems to me that a similar blindness needs
to be attributed to hate. Both love and hate,
therefore, have an unconscious component,
and if this is the case the unconscious

Can we think about

the joy of hate, the joy
of destruction?
has a role in both immature and mature
forms of love and hate. This leads us to
the transferential aspects of love and hate,
their repetitions, how they evolve or repeat
through the repetition compulsion over the
course of relationships and in therapy.
The most common issue that I encounter
in my patients generally is the problems
associated with love. This takes the form
of either finding it hard to deal with love
and intimacy or, related but different,
feeling unlovable. Freud was always clear
that the experience of psychoanalysis is to
encounter the passions of love and hate
and that the practice of psychoanalysis
is essentially an expression of love. The
inevitability of the transference means
that the cure for the wounds of love will
be found within the same expression: the
process of cure is accomplished in a relapse
into love and can only be resolved and
washed away by a fresh high tide of the
same passions (Freud, 1907: 113).
This brings me to one last distinction, that
between romantic love and enduring
love. We have known for a long time
that the feature of romantic love, usually
associated with the first stage of love, is
its idealisation and a basking in mutual
idealised projection: the one we love seems
so like our-self or what we want because
we project our most desired qualities on to
them. Falling out of love is finding that the
loved object is not so fabulous after all. But
enduring love is something else. After the
collapse of mutual projections we may still
love the other, warts and all. Despite their
faults, we still love them; as several of my
patients have described it, You feel loved
for what you are. Here, it seems to me, the
warts and all are the hateful things inside
us. If love has a healing power, it is that it
allows for the experience of those hateful
parts to be loved. As I understand it, that is
how therapy works. For my money, Freud
is still the best at describing therapeutic
action: Essentially the cure is effected by
love (1906). Perhaps effective therapy can
be described as the triumph of love over
hate; we might then say that negative
therapeutic reaction is the triumph of
hate over love (Mann and Cunningham,

2008). It is the experience of our hateful

side as still loveable that puts the therapy
into psychotherapy. Ideally, the patient is
ready to leave therapy when they have
a secure sense of their lovability. I would
hope, or anticipate, that this also leaves
the wounded healer, the psychotherapist,
feeling a bit more lovable.
Having reached my conclusion, I wish to
end by stirring things up again. The title I
nearly gave to this article was The eros of
love and hate. I would place the experience
of love and hate well within the realms
of the erotic, the sexual in the broadest
sense (see my other books and articles:
Mann 1994, 1997 and 1999). In that regard,
such distinctions as those made by the
ancient Greeks such as agape or philein are
still aspects of eros. Perhaps the greatest
mischief making that Freud did was untying
our blindfolds to reveal the pervasive
sexuality and eroticism of eros. P

Freud S (1906). The Freud/Jung letters [ed W
Maguire]. Princeton University Press, 1974.
Freud S (1907). Delusions and dreams in Jensens
Gradiva. Pelican Freud Library (PFL), vol 14.
Hammondsworth: Penguin Books, 1987.
Freud S (1915). Instinct and their vicissitudes. PFL,
vol 11, Penguin Books, 1987.
Freud S (1921). Group psychology and the analysis
of the ego. PFL, vol 12, Penguin Books, 1987.
Freud S (1923). The ego and the id. PFL, vol. 11,
Penguin Books, 1987.
Freud S (1930). Civilization and its discontents.
PFL vol 12, 1991.
Freud S (1938). An outline of psychoanalysis. PFL
vol 15, 1993.
Goldwater E (2007). The joy of violence. Mod.
Psychoanal, 32, pp2042.
Mann D (1994). The psychotherapists erotic
subjectivity. British Journal of Psychotherapy,
10(3), pp344354.
Mann D (1997). Psychotherapy: an
erotic relationship transference and
countertransference passions. London: Routledge.
Mann D (1999). Erotic transference and
countertransference: clinical practice in
psychotherapy. London: Routledge.
Mann D (2002). Love and hate: psychoanalytic
perspectives. London: Routledge.
Mann D and Cunningham V (2008). The past in
the present: therapy enactments and the return of
trauma. London: Routledge.
Winnicott DW (1958). The capacity to be alone.
In The maturational processes and the facilitating
environment. London: Hogarth Press, 1987)

The Psychotherapist

How we love
Dr Geoff Warburton interviews Dr Harville Hendrix,
co-founder of Imago relationship therapy, about what
he knows about love
Geoff Warburton: What is your
definition of love?
Harville Hendrix: Love is what we are
when we are not anxious. When we
are experiencing what we really are as
human beings. That means we are feeling
safe and we are also feeling connected.
Connection here means we are feeling at
one with everything. You cant experience
your connection if youre anxious. Then
you feel separated and you do things that
regulate your anxiety. But when you feel
safe, and hence your natural connection to
everything, the natural consequence of that
is caring for the whole context. Love is that
experience of caring for the whole without
asking for anything from the whole back.
This means that being is love. This is what
we would always experience if we were not
anxious. We are anxious because everybody
has had something disruptive happen in
childhood. So this experience of connection
gets ruptured in the unattuned interaction
with the caretaker. And this produces the
anxiety and the desire to have that original
connection back with the caretaker.
Romantic love is a kind of hors doeuvre to
what love is. But it has so much history, so
much a needs system attached to it, that it
becomes a conditional experience. Romantic
love is a conditional experience. When you get
below this you get to love is what we are. We
look for someone with whom we can recover
the original connection. We dont know we
are doing that. We meet someone and that
person triggers that sense of connection. You
will do anything for them. Thats a taste, the
hors doeuvre of our nature that we cant have
because we are anxious that we might
lose it.
We want our nature back and that nature is
connection; its not individual autonomy. This
connection is experienced in relationship.
Its not experienced in your head. Its
experienced by being with others and not

Romantic love is a kind

of hors doeuvre to what
love is
being anxious about being with others.
When you are anxious with others, you cant
experience connection; therefore your true
nature is missing. When you are not anxious
you are being with your connection and
then you experience love. You experience
that you are love. You dont try to love. You
dont try to be loving. You are loving when
you are not anxious. Its your nature.

GW:The Imago method seems like

a spiritual practice. Could you say
something about that?
HH: Dialogue is a spiritual practice. What I
mean is that uniformly in spiritual traditions
there is a focusing process where you pray,
focus on God, or you meditate with the focus
on your own internal process, or you focus on
a point outside. The reason this is impactful
is because of the focusing. When you focus
on what is arising you do a left/right, upper/
lower brain integration process. Its a calming
experience. You go back and forth, from
feeling to reflecting, feeling to reflecting.
Dialogue, which is our intervention, requires
that kind of focused concentration on your
partners expressions. When your partner
talks, the dialogue process requires that
you clear your own mind of your own
processing, that you move your focus out
of your own internal reactions to your
partners sharing of his or her experiencing.
Staying focused on that does to your brain
what the meditation process does.
We have had one little research programme
that found that the same areas thickened
in the prefrontal cortex through meditation
were thickened in only 12 weeks of
practising the dialogue process. So dialogue
parallels meditation. But it appears from
our research that dialogue requires


The theory of love

feature article

The theory of love

feature article
more concentration because you are not
focusing on your own internal experiencing.
Youre focusing on the possibly negative
stimulating stuff coming from your partner.
And to stay centred in the presence of
your partners reactivity requires more
muscle, more concentration, and therefore
produces more thickening of the layer that
one gets from meditating. In that sense its a
spiritual discipline.

GW: How do you see the Imago

method in terms of neuroscience?
HH: Empathy has a neurophysiological and
a neurochemical component to it. Empathy
is built into our system.
When you get anxious you cannot be
empathic. Couples tend to scare each other
by their demands or their unavailability.
There are only two basic things that couples
do to scare each other. Im not available or
Im in your face. Either way you feel invaded
or abandoned and when that happens you
get anxious. You cant move into the role of
the other without considerable effort. In that
moment of anxiety you get flooded with
cortisol. Cortisol is a chemical that activates
the sensing of danger, which apparently
is a function of the amygdala, which looks
around and says, Am I going to die or am
I going to kill somebody? You can switch
that chemical off and go into endorphins by
switching the focus of attention. If you switch
the focus of attention, like in dialogue, if you
move out of the focus of your own reactivity
into your partners expression, your cortisol
level will go down and your endorphin level
will go up. If you go up in your endorphin
level your partners cortisol level will go
down. So their reactivity will go down so
they can move into endorphins. So then
that connection, which is our nature, then
becomes possible through choice to focus
outward rather than inward.
When two people are engaging with each
other with safety and with the dialogue
process they are helping to balance the
left and right hemispheres and to integrate
the upper and lower brain. So the dialogue
process looks like neural integration from
the inside. If there is a breakdown and both
go into reactivity then the brain goes into
chaos and there is no neural integration.
And that produces emotional anxiety, which
then becomes the terror of the human race.
From my perspective, anxiety is the human
problem. Thats what we are all trying to


Harville Hendrix, PhD is a clinical pastoral counsellor who

is known internationally for his work with couples. He
and his wife Helen LaKelly Hunt, PhD co-created Imago
relationship therapy and developed the concept of
conscious partnership. Their partnership and collaboration
has resulted in nine books on intimate relationships and
parenting. Harville has appeared on many national television
shows. In addition to many radio shows, Harvilles work
has been written about in numerous newspapers and
magazines internationally, including Oprah Magazine where
he was referred to in an article as the marriage whisperer.
He is a member of the Redbook Marriage Institute, serving on the magazines team of
marriage experts.

GW: What do you see as the main

obstacle to the giving and receiving
of love?
HH: Anxiety. I think anxiety is the bottom
line human problem and all pathologies
arise from that. When you go to the DSM,
they are all the different forms that anxiety
takes. Unfortunately, we divide them up into
syndromes and treat the syndrome but not
the anxiety that gives rise to the syndrome.
Anxiety is there and it works on both sides
of giving and receiving love.
Anxiety is really about death. At a deep
unconscious level anxiety is not about being
abandoned or even dying. Its about not being
at all. The philosopher Heidegger and the
theological mentor I have, Paul Tilich, are both
very clear that anxiety is about non-being; its
not about death. Maybe theres something
else after death, but theres nothing after nonbeing. Thats the greatest terror of all. I think
most clinicians dont tend to walk around
with the awareness that most of the people
in their offices are unconsciously trying not
to disappear into nothingness. When you get
that, your own care and empathy for them
changes. You have to say here is a person
scared to death. So then, if you can be present
to them so that their anxiety will lesson, they
can come into their own being.
When we regulate our anxiety, most of our
problems are taken care of.

GW: What could you say to couples

who feel hopeless and that love is
lost in their relationship?
HH: Those feelings comes from the
incapacity that both feel in sustaining
the capacity for connection. Those are
statements about the void that comes from
ruptured connection. Those are statements
from the void and a calling for some hand
across the void so that people can be

connected. The thing that most couples

bring to me is: We are not connected. We
want to be connected. I dont know how
and everything I do doesnt work. The
yearning to be the love that we are, I think,
is the desire that has been suffocated
behind all of the presenting problems. So I
dont pay attention to presenting problems
anymore because thats a waste of time.
Whatever you focus on you get more of.
If you focus on the presenting problems,
you get a lot about those problems. But if
you move into a process we call dialogue,
where you can look into each others eyes
and relax and slow down and then begin
to speak in ways that are not tinged with
negativity, what happens is you have the
chemical shift in the brain from cortisoal
to endorphins. Then you begin to feel
this person in front of you is no longer as
terrifying as they were. And you sit with
that long enough until the two of you are
actually connected. So thats what we try to
do in the Imago therapeutic process.

GW: Could you say something

about hate?
HH: I think that hate and aggression
are secondary symptoms of anxiety. Im
surprised the psychoanalytic community
does not read Freuds The problem of
anxiety, which is his seminal text. And
then Rollo May, 50 years later, writes the
second seminal book. Why anxiety is not
the primary diagnostic category giving
explanation to all symptoms as part of the
mental health community amazes me. Its a
core theory in the analytic tradition. But it
did get lost. I remember being there myself,
but it doesnt work. If you help people
explore their hatred, they become more
hateful. You have to help them understand
that they are just scared and then how they
can regulate their fear. Then they become
more connected and loving. P

feature article
The theory of love

Living body principles

whats LOVE got to do with it?
When it comes to understanding their own bodys sensations, Kai Ehrhardt
believes most people are challenged. But when the body awakes to itself, new
possibilities of eros emerge

any people today have left

behind a reductionist worldview.
They have no doubt that body,
psyche, mind and environment are
interconnected. Everything is part
of a complex, living process that has
evolved over hundreds of millions of
years. For the first time in history, we
can collectively recognise that we are
coming from somewhere and that
we are going somewhere. Witnessing
ourselves on an unfolding trajectory
that seems to have order and
purpose to it, we have become active
participants in our own evolution.

It is one thing to understand that

cognitively or emotionally. But what is it
like to experience the systemic, holistically
emergent aspects of our reality on the
cellular level of our own bodies?


Most people are right at home

connecting to their thoughts and
perhaps have a little more trouble
sometimes identifying emotions.
However, when it comes to sensations,
many people are more challenged. This
is interesting when you consider that
the capacity of organisms to respond
to sensory input is developmentally a
lot older at least 505 million years!
Sensory information is primarily
processed in us by the reptilian brain.
The limbic system governs emotional
information; this started about 300
million years ago. After that the (neo)
cortex gave rise to cognition, memory,
thought and abstraction starting about
200 million years ago.
Most people usually need time when asked
to sense. What sounds fairly simple at first
turns out to consist of lots of unfamiliar
layers, which can cause confusion. What

When people truly arrive at the level

of their sensations meaning when,
for instance, they truly discover breath
movement in the back, chest, belly or
pelvic floor they realise several things:

bic Brain up to








The Psychotherapist

really is a sensation, an emotion or a

thought? How do I distinguish them? What
are sensations that are always available
even without the presence of pain, pleasure
or other strong stimuli? Am I memorising
sensation (Neo/Cortex) or is it happening in
real time (Brain Stem)?

Development of organisations response systems

ght )

Kai Ehrhardt is a breath therapist, somatics

educator and group facilitator devoted to
the cultivation of the conscious body. He
and is currently establishing the Somatic
Arts Academy in Berlin. He also holds
the German Heilpraktiker licence for
psychotherapy. Kai believes that the
conscious body and experiencing the
deeper meaning of eros are crucial
elements towards an integral way of life.
Kai has been teaching since 2002 and
lives in Berlin and New York City.

Witnessing ourselves
on an unfolding trajectory
that seems to have order
and purpose to it, we have
become active participants
in our own evolution

Brain Stem up to
500m years old


The theory of love

feature article
Everything is part of a
complex, living process
that has evolved over
hundreds of millions of
a) Thought activity decreases. Thought
activity is where a lot of our psychoemotional suffering gets created
and maintained. Up to 90% of our
evaluations of situations, other people
and ourselves have little or nothing to
do with what is actually happening.
b) Sensation is an experience only
possible now. It connects us to what is
actually happening instead of stories,
fantasies or emotionally triggered
information that stems from an older or
an imagined context.
c) Evaluation, comparison and
judgment are not possible at the
level of sensation. There is no object/
subject split things just are. It is not
possible to have a preference, as in like/
dont like, good/bad or right/wrong.
d) Because sensation connects to that
which is, we become more inclusive
and invoke our capacity for empathy.
e) By sensing ourselves as we are, we gain
inner strength.
Quite a few body-based disciplines
(somatics) have used these principles
very effectively in various therapeutic
and personal growth-related ways for
many decades. This is not about isolating
sensation and condemning emotion or
thought. By connecting to the deeper
layers of sensation, a more balanced
relationship between all three domains
naturally arises.

Lifes principle of adaptation

When the body awakes to itself, new
possibilities emerge. Somatics research,
based on the experience of breath,
movement and bodywork, has shown
over and over again that our psychology
and biography are reflected in our body.
Tissue, breath and body adapt to mental/
emotional patterns in a very concrete
way. Shame, inhibition, confidence, rage,
joy, vulnerability every persistent or
recurring emotional state or thought
pattern form physical correlations.


To what degree are the shoulders

curved or raised? Is the upper belly area
collapsed inward? In what way is the
lumber spine contracted while impacting
hips or neck? What shape is maintained
in the toes and the jaw? What is the state
of the skin, muscles, organs, bones, fluids
and connective tissue? What location,
rhythm, texture is reflected in inhalations
and exhalations, and what habitual
degree of effort is used to breathe, stand
and walk?
Our physical form reliably encodes who
we are as actual in-FORM-ation expressed
through the very form of our body.
Emotions, thoughts and environment are
in a constant feedback loop with cellular
properties. Tissue adapts to context. When
the context changes tissue changes. It is
how nature evolved in the first place. But
it happens also the other way around. In
other words, once shaped, the tissue then
reinforces the emotionalmental pattern
that imprinted it. A catch-22 is created
one reason why it is so hard to transcend
persistent habits. Our identity is preserved
in our very tissue until consciousness
or life changes free us from this revolving
Once we learn to become conscious
of our body through sensing it, we get
to discern the degree of compression
or density in it. We can start to discern
where open, receptive and undefended
space is available. What quality and
quantity of flow or movement articulation
is possible? And how does that influence
my state of being, my relationships and
my outlook?

Self-regulatory, systemic
When awareness interrupts the catch22 mentioned above, the body starts to
deeply regulate itself. One condition that
supports that is: slowing down to sense
and allow for non-functional movements.
These are movements that dont serve an
immediate, obvious purpose, like reaching
out to grasp a cup or like stretching a
particular muscle. These movements are
guided by systemic needs that are more
complex than the mind can cognitively
grasp. However, they just appear to have
no immediate function. In actuality,
they follow the rich wisdom that has
accumulated in organismic intelligence
over aeons. If this is a conscious process,

Every persistent or
recurring emotional state
or thought pattern forms
physical correlations
the body may no longer be experienced
a part here and a part there. In advanced
embodiment stages, it experiences itself as
one all at once.
As we slow down and sense, we become
aware of internal relationships and start
to notice systemically orchestrated
movement impulses. These movements
follow unwinding and nonlinear
dynamics. They are guided by intelligent,
systemic desires. For instance, the small
finger of the right hand may suddenly
be lengthened by itself while triggering
an inward spiralling motion of the arm
connected to it. At the same time, the
left foot engages in lateral spreading
sensation in the sole and toes. This means
that we can sense internal relationships
that are no longer just linear as in this
move follows that move. The movements
can also be simultaneous, yet far apart
and still related. Experiencing the body in
relationship with itself in such a deep way
cultivates trust in lifes unpredictability,
against which we usually tend to guard
and insure ourselves from in numerous
The nature of this nonlinear, self-regulatory
process is simultaneously healing
and unfolding. Physical/psychological
stresses unwind and latent potential
emerges at the same time. That can be
a tremendously delicious awakening to
new territory. It is always different and
cannot be preconceived by the mind.
Possibility, discovery and a sense of clarity
emerge. Deeply experiencing our physical
fullness may move through numerous
challenging stages, but in the end it always
feels ful-filling and pleasurable. Many
people describe this state of conscious
embodiment as having come home.

The dynamic interplay of lifes

forces expresses an erotic event
The organismic push that initiates the
birth of a child happens in its own perfect,
contextual tension and timing. In the
same way, a dying leaf falls from a tree at
a particular moment. During this moment
all forces involved conspire to a particular

blend of effort and none-effort. When

the month of February is unusually warm
in the north, flowers will come out early.
They will not follow a timetable and stick
to March or April. They follow the whole
Lifes driving forces create a complex
dynamic. Some may refer to this as
eros. We could argue about what eros
is or isnt. What we cannot argue about
is that everything can feel erotic if we
allow ourselves to drop into the wet and
pulsating sensation of life happening.
Through our conscious bodies, we can
access life as a sensual event inside and
outside our skin.
Conscious embodiment increases our
sense of fullness. The clarity of systemic
direction gained in step 3 is now identical
to our essential desires. They become the
vectors behind our personal eros. The
whole body contextually inFORMs our
eros. Since we now operate from literal
fullness gained through embodiment,
our eros reflects that fullness through
the nature of our desires. The cultural
implications of this are huge.
Embodied consciousness which
could also be called embodied eros
describes a living connection to context.
We just know what move is next and
when. At the same time being plugged
into eros provides a kind of built-in,
systemic safety. Mental activity left to
its own devices separates; it needs lines,
demarcations, lots of rules and timetables
to create safety. Our increasing cultural
preoccupation with safety to which
we have sacrificed much of our eros is
only another reflection of the dying
dominance of rational and mental values.

Universal empathy and love have a

tissue equivalent
Beneath the tissue indentations created by
our personal history, our biological history
has also left an imprint. The imprint from
that history that goes back at least 505
million years could be summarised as: am
I safe?
When we become adept at embodiment
practices we start to notice the ancient

Our physical form

reliably encodes who
we are
The Psychotherapist

question, am I safe? in our very tissue.

It is like a permanent, subtle activation
that creates a sort of systemic, persistent
tension or cramp throughout the whole
body. This systemic tension is practically
always unconscious. After all, it has been
with us since the beginning. Imagine you
are alone in your apartment and all of a
sudden you become aware of the ever so
slight humming of the fridge. In the same
way, just much, much more subtle, the fear
of not being safe and the fear of death are
wired into our system and are humming
there right now.
Once we slow down and stay with body
awareness long enough, we start to sense
it. At first it feels like an impenetrable wall.
Suddenly, it seems like we have never, ever
been relaxed or at peace. We realise that
instead we have always been busy trying
to feel better or safer. That realisation can
be quite disturbing.
The attempt to pass this wall of subtle
tension will likely be met with resistance.
Fully feeling it and surrendering to it
will, however, make it melt. Our sensate
consciousness acts on it like hot tea on a
cube of sugar. The cramp is nothing but
our deepest layers of fear manifesting in
cellular structure. Once this primal holding
dissolves, we are in the presence of a
sense of unconditional love. This ultimate
systemic tension marks the line between
I am separate from the world and I am
integrally interwoven.

Conscious incarnation
Culturally we have yet to understand
what it means to consciously incarnate.
Once we become familiar with the
emerging possibilities available in
conscious embodiment, we understand
that systemic and integrative concept can
actually be experienced through our wet,
breathing bodies. The body is integral by
definition. The intention is not to regress
to sensation though at first we might
but to use the tool of consciousness to
penetrate our whole existence. We then
discover ourselves as a continuum of
interpenetrating experiences. Together
they create something larger than the
sum of sensations, emotions and thoughts.
We could call it a fourth state expressing
through embodied consciousness or
embodied integral eros.
This can be approached as a
developmental path toward unconditional

Through our conscious

bodies, we can access life
as a sensual event inside
and outside our skin
love and Self-emergence. It opens the door
to a dynamically pulsating, self-regulatory
state of balance that has the potential
to transcend and include reductionist,
dualistic perception on a deep cellular
Many people involved with advanced
somatics understand that this points
toward a new evolutionary destination
beyond our capacity to walk upright and
think straight. A body that lights up in all
sensory felt directions awake in every
pore. The full-blown pleasure of being
alive propelled by the intelligence of lifes
eros. The tension of our current global
issues actually accelerates this. We are
forced to awaken to systemic awareness.
Discovering the body as a voluptuous gate
towards integral, unconditional love is an
incredible gem on the way. P

Gintis B (2007). Engaging the movement of
life: exploring health and embodiment through
continuum and osteopathy. Berkeley: North
Atlantic Books.
Hartley L (1989, 1995). Wisdom of the body
moving: an introduction to body mind centering.
Berkeley: North Atlantic Books.
Hartley L (2004). Somatic psychology: body, mind
and meaning. London: Whurr Publishers.
Johnson D (1995). Bone, breath, and gesture:
practices of embodiment, volume 1. Berkeley:
North Atlantic Books.
Johnson D (1995). The body in psychotherapy:
inquiries in somatic psychology. Berkeley: North
Atlantic Books.
Kaparo R (2012). Awakening somatic intelligence:
the art and practice of embodied mindfulness.
Berkeley: North Atlantic Books.
Macnaughton I (2004). Body, breath and
consciousness: a somatics anthology. Berkeley:
North Atlantic Books.
Roffler and Middendorf (2009). A somatic
science and art of living. In S Mijares S (ed). The
revelation of the breath. Albany: State University
of New York Press.
Schleip R (19982012). Articles on fascia research
[online]. Available at
(accessed 20 July 2012).


The theory of love

feature article

The theory of love

feature article

Six ways to love

Professors Clyde and Susan Hendrick explain the Love Attitudes Scale (LAS),
which, they say, is ideally suited for certain aspects of couple therapy

e have studied romantic love

(and related concepts such
as sexual attitudes, relationship
satisfaction and relational respect)
for the past three decades. Romantic
love is the basis for meeting, mating
and family formation in much of
todays world. Thus romantic love
deserves serious research attention; it
is definitely not a fringe topic in terms
of importance. A large number of
people see a therapist for relationship
problems, including love gone awry.

Theories of love
There are many theories of love. Our work
has been based on a model proposed by
Lee (1973) in his book entitled The colors
of love. Lee used the metaphor of a colour
wheel to define types of love, which he
designated primary types, secondary types,
and so on. Practically speaking, six types or
colours, composed of Lees three primaries

Clyde and Susan Hendrick

Clyde is Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of
Psychology and a social psychologist at
Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas,
Susan is Paul Whitfield Horn Professor
of Psychology and a counselling
psychologist at Texas Tech University in
Lubbock, Texas, USA


and three secondaries, have been studied

Lee spent ten years using several methods
in developing his model. We realised that
such an approach was too cumbersome
for general use, so we constructed a
straightforward rating scale, using seven
likert-type statements for each of six love
styles. The first, relatively perfected, version of
the Love Attitudes Scale (LAS; Hendrick and
Hendrick, 1986) showed excellent subscale
test-retest reliability, internal consistency
and criterion validity. Highly important was
the fact that the six love subscales were
independent of each other, suggesting that
we were indeed measuring six different
concepts (or types) of romantic love.
Our LAS was widely used; however, we
noted other researchers borrowing subsets
of the items presumably to form even
shorter subscales. We then decided to
take control of this situation by forming
our own four-item subscales, based on
our extensive data sets. We achieved solid
success (Hendrick, Hendrick and Dicke,
1998) with a 24-item version of the scale
entitled the Love Attitudes Scale: Short
Form. This scale had even better statistical
properties than the original 42-item
version. We have used this version of the
LAS in all of our subsequent love-related
research. Both versions of the LAS have
been translated into many languages. The
six-factor structure has held up well but
occasionally only five factors are obtained.
The six love styles thus appear to have good
cross-cultural generalisability.
So, what are these six different ways or styles
of doing romantic love? Capsule summaries
are given below. Lee (1973) stressed that all
six styles are equally valid ways of loving. We
agree, although many of our participants
who complete the ratings do not believe the
style named ludus is really love.

The love styles

The six styles are named eros, ludus, storge,
pragma, mania and agape. Eros is best

expressed as love at first sight, characterised

by passionate intensity, broadly construed.
Strong attraction to a preferred physical type
of person is important, as is the ability to
offer and receive profound communication.
Eros is not possessive, yet feels a deep
connection with the partner.
Item: My partner and I have the right physical
chemistry between us.
Ludus is love as a game, played for each
partners pleasure and satisfaction. The ludic
lover is not attracted to a particular physical
type and, unlike the eros lover, does not have
any serious intent. Ludus doesnt want to
commit to just one lover and doesnt want a
lover to commit either. The intention is not
for anyone to get hurt; love is a game after all.
Item: My partner would get upset if he/she
knew of some of the things Ive done with
other people.
Storge is a friendship-based love that
evolves over time. For a storgic lover, it is
important that partners share attitudes and
values. Similarity in these enduring areas is
more important than a preferred physical
type, and love is certainly not a game. A
storgic partner builds a relationship slowly
and surely with the intention of making a
long-term commitment if the relationship
keeps proceeding to deeper levels.
Item: Our love is the best kind because it grew
out of a long friendship.
A pragma lover is notably practical and seeks
a suitable long-term partner. The romantic
pragmatist wants a partner who will make
a compatible mate, has solid financial
prospects and will be a good parent. Pragma
goes looking for a partner with a list of
desired qualities. An online dating site can be
a good avenue for a pragma lover to search
for a potential partner.
Item: A main consideration in choosing my
partner was how he/she would reflect on my
Mania is drama personified! A manic lover

feature article
Hendrick, 1996), as have other researchers.
Further, friendship love is extremely
important to young couples. For example,
we found that nearly half of a college
student sample named their romantic
partner as their best friend (Hendrick and
Hendrick, 1993). Thus therapists should
be aware that passion remains important
for couples into their senior years, and
friendship is likely important for most
couples at any age.

Item: When my partner doesnt pay attention

to me, I feel sick all over.

The love styles relate differentially to

sexual attitudes, such as permissiveness
(eg Hendrick and Hendrick, 1987; Hendrick,
Hendrick and Reich, 2006), communication
(Meeks, Hendrick and Hendrick, 1998),
relationship satisfaction (Hendrick, Dicke
and Hendrick, 1998), personality variables
(White, Hendrick and Hendrick, 2004) and
respect (Hendrick and Hendrick, 2006).

Agape was the rarest of the love styles

found by Lee (1973). An agapic lover is
generous and other-centred rather than
self-centred. The agape lover is concerned
about the partners welfare and would
rather the partner be happy than be happy
themselves. Agape has a very spiritual
quality associated with it, and sensual
concerns are much less relevant than
altruistic ones. Agapes rarity is unsurprising.
Item: I cannot be happy unless I place my
partners happiness before my own.

Research on love styles

A vast amount of research has been
conducted on the love styles using the
LAS or LAS: Short Form. Romantic love is
an anchor concept, linked to many other
relational concepts such as sexuality,
communication, respect, friendship and
personality dimensions. Our research
programme has related the love styles to
many of these other concepts.
Gender. Mean gender differences emerged
in our earliest work (Hendrick and Hendrick,
1986) and have continued over the years.
Men endorsed ludus more than women
in every sample we have tested, although
endorsement tends towards disagree for
both genders. Typically, women were more
storgic and pragmatic than men, and there
were no gender differences on erotic and
agapic (altruistic) love. More recent studies
(Hendrick, Hendrick and Dicke, 1998)
found women more erotic than men but
men more altruistic than women. Thus, for
whatever reasons, there can be historical
shifts in relative gender mean scores on the
Passion versus friendship. Young lovers
are supposed to be erotic and older lovers
more storgic/friendship-oriented. We have
found that passion is important to all
age groups (eg Contreras, Hendrick and

The Psychotherapist

The diversity of the love styles, as measured

by the LAS, gives six vantage points on
romantic love. This diversity in turn provides
fecund associations with a wide variety
of other relational variables, a fecundity
only hinted at above. The styles also offer
interesting options for therapists working
with couples experiencing a wide range of
difficulties. An example of the love styles
utility in couple therapy is provided below,
with couple defined broadly, though the
example is a married couple.

Case example
Caroline and David, married for ten years,
have a five-year old daughter, Lily. Caroline
is a nurse and David a businessman. They
sought marital therapy because Caroline
felt David slipping away from her and
she sensed danger to the marriage. One
major event in their marriage was Lilys
diagnosis of leukemia at age three and the
treatment regimen for her disease, which
ended successfully only recently. This illness
precipitated Carolines leave of absence
from work and Davids assumption of total
financial responsibility for the family. Sex,
communication and intimacy of all types
gave way to cancer for the past two years.
David agreed to therapy because he regrets
the loss of the relationship the couple once
had. The transcript below is drawn from the
female therapists third session with the
Therapist: So how has the past week been
for the two of you?
Caroline: I guess there have been no drastic

Romantic love is an
anchor concept, linked
to relational concepts
such as sexuality,
respect, friendship and

The theory of love

experiences emotional highs when things

in the relationship are going well and
emotional lows if any doubts about the
partner occur. A manic lover longs for a
secure and happy love relationship, but
is suspicious, jealous, subject to somatic
symptoms and often behaves in ways
destructive to that secure and happy love.
When partnered with someone very steady
and patient, a manic lover will be ready to
trade the drama for devotion.

changes, although I have made more of

an effort to ask David about his workday.
I have even been thinking about going
back to work part-time.
David: I have noticed Caroline trying to
show more of an interest, but I still dont
think that things are particularly better.
I just do not believe there is any way
we can get back what we had when we
were first together.
Therapist: David, you are right. We can
never go back. Even if Lily had not
gotten cancer, you and Caroline would
still be different from who you were
ten years ago. Time and children and
maturation all change us. I cant undo
that. But perhaps I can help explain
part of your reactions to the changes.
First, a childs serious illness is a major
stressor on relationships. In addition,
you and Caroline have had to make
huge adjustments in who you are in the
marriage and family. How did each
of you react when you got Lilys
Caroline: I felt as though my world was
falling apart, but as a nurse, I also felt
that I needed to make Lily my first
priority to get her and us through
David: I felt the same way initially like the
floor dropped out from under me
but then I realised I needed to support
Caroline and Lily, and I started to deal
with all the health forms and financial
results of Carolines leaving work.
Therapist: Remember that last week I talked
with you about the Love Attitudes
Scale that you took at the time of your
first appointment? [Both partners nod
affirmatively.] I told you that you were
similar on several styles, but we would
focus on the top two. You both score
highest on eros, which is passionate,


feature article
The theory of love

romantic love. You described to me

how you two fell in love so quickly
and became close physically and
emotionally. That intense connection
was a binding force that sustained you
through your early years together. Eros
can bring colour to what sometimes
seems a black and white world. Consider
your second love preferences. Davids
second most preferred style is storge,
which is friendship love and another
basis for your relationship. When Lily was
diagnosed with cancer and the world
turned upside down, your friendship
stayed strong, yet you only rarely were
lovers. Carolines second preferred love
style is agape, or altruistic love. Usually
this love is directed toward a partner,
but in this case I expect that Carolines
selfless love turned toward Lily. So you
lost, or I would say misplaced, your most
important love style. But that was what
the situation required. Is this making
some sense to you both?

This brief excerpt shows how the love styles

can help explain some aspects of a couples
marital dilemma.

Hendrick C, Hendrick SS and Reich DA (2006).

The Brief Sexual Attitudes Scale. The Journal of
Sex Research, 43, pp7686.


Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (1987).

Multidimensionality of sexual attitudes. The
Journal of Sex Research, 23, pp502526.

We have found partners to be very interested

in their own and each others love styles.
This knowledge appears to promote further
understanding of their relationship. The
LAS seems ideally suited for certain aspects
of couple therapy, and research indicates
that it is a reliable and valid instrument. So
it remains for therapists and researchers to
establish clinical norms for the LAS. P

Contreras R, Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (1996).
Perspectives on marital love and satisfaction in
Mexican American and Anglo couples. Journal of
Counseling and Development, 74, pp408415.
Hendrick C and Hendrick SS (1986). A theory and
method of love. Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, 50, pp392102.
Hendrick C, Hendrick SS and Dicke A (1998).
The Love Attitudes Scale: Short Form. Journal of
Social and Personal Relationships, 15, pp147159.

Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (1993). Lovers

as friends. Journal of Social and Personal
Relationships, 10, pp459466.
Hendrick SS, Dicke A. and Hendrick C (1998). The
Relationship Assessment Scale. Journal of Social
and Personal Relationships, 15, pp137142.
Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (2006). Measuring
respect in close relationships. Journal of Social
and Personal Relationships, 23, pp881899.
Lee JA (1973). The colors of love: an exploration of
the ways of loving. Don Mills, Ontario: New Press.
Meeks BS, Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (1998).
Communication, love, and relationship
satisfaction. Journal of Social and Personal
Relationships, 15, pp755773.
White JK, Hendrick SS and Hendrick C (2004).
Big five personality variables and relationship
constructs. Personality and Individual Differences,
37, pp15191530.

UKCPs 4th open forum

Critical moments for psychotherapy in Britain

Saturday, 8 December 2012 Central London 9.30am to 4.30pm
Topics covered at the next forum will be:
The UKCP register
The register was created with the aim to create common standards
and to advance the professional accountability and recognition for
psychotherapists. This autumns launch of the governments Assured
Voluntary Regulation scheme by the CHRE (soon to be renamed
Professional Standards Authority (PSA) marks a crucial milestone on
this journey for psychotherapy and psychotherapeutic counselling
in Britain. We will update you on the progress made with time for
questions and discussion..

UKCPs Central Complaints Process (CCP)

Created well before the governments U-turn on regulation, the
process of rolling out the CCP to cover all members on the UKCPs
register is well underway and expected to be completed by the
end of 2013, the very year UKCPs register will turn 20. Much work
has been done over the past 12 months to improve the CCP and
develop it into an efficient, consistent and fair process that can
deliver effective and prompt resolution of complaints. We will
update you on the progress made and on the outcomes of this
autumns CCP consultation.

UKCPs ethical stance

As the main professional body for psychotherapy in Britain, UKCP


has issued position statements about torture and about reparative

therapy. At the open forum, we want to hear your views on whether
we should also debate and agree ethical positions on other
controversial issues in general society. The issue of dignity in dying /
assisted suicide, for instance, is similarly complex and sensitive and,
in the context of psychotherapy practice, may potentially bring up
serious confidentiality conflicts for practitioners. UKCP could also
consider developing an ecology statement. Are there other issues
the psychotherapy profession could or should take a position on?
We are inviting vox-pop speakers to open up a discussion on the
idea in principle of such position statements and a more proactive
stance for UKCP in society.

Join the debate in person or via video link from

your computer
Booking process
Pre-booking is essential for this event and viewing the live video link.
To guarantee your place, please complete our online form which you
can find on our website at:

For further information please contact: 020 7014 9966
or visit our website:

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love in the therapy room

In the past ten years I have noticed that there has been increasingly diverse and
interesting literature that has emerged exploring the complexities of the different
facets of this experience which we call love. Furthermore, for therapists, since the
time of Sigmund Freud, literature has been written and research published which
argues that, in therapy, the most important factor is the therapeutic relationship.
Interestingly, some have described the curative factor of the therapeutic relationship
as a kind of Love (Haugh and Paul 2008). The collection of articles published here
aim to contribute to, challenge and encourage fresh thinking in psychotherapy practice
and provide a different perspective on how therapists conceptualise their work.
Divine Charura
The Psychotherapist


Love in the therapy room

feature article

Accepting the therapeutic

relationship as love
Stephen Paul and Divine Charura believe that selfless
love is central to successful psychotherapy

e propose that love is central

to a successful therapeutic
relationship. The founders of different
modalities such as Sigmund Freud and
Carl Rogers, in their different ways,
maintain the importance of love. We
invite you to revisit the place of selfless
love in your therapeutic work.

What the research tells us

After decades of competition between the
different modalities of therapy as to which
therapy is best, research findings have clearly
found that the model of therapy in itself
makes no significant difference to outcome.
Common factors have been identified
across the modalities that are intrinsic
to success in therapy. These are:
extratherapeutic factors that are part of the
clients personal life out of therapy which


Divine is a senior lecturer in counselling

and psychotherapy at Leeds
Metropolitan University. He also works
as a UKCP registered psychotherapist for
the Leeds and York NHS Trust and has
work experience in diverse therapeutic
settings. His psychotherapeutic interests
are in transcultural work, working with
individuals experiencing complex
psychological distress, working with
difference/diversity, relationship issues
and their impact on mental health.
Divine is also a lover of photography,
fashion design, art, music and outdoor


aid recovery regardless of participation in

psychological therapy; hope/expectancy
that results from the clients knowledge
that s/he is being treated and from the
belief that therapy will work; model or
technique factors unique to particular
therapies (homework tasks, desensitisation,
etc); and last but not least, the therapeutic
The therapeutic relationship, however, is
now generally accepted as being the most
important factor in therapy within the
therapists power. Paul and Haugh (2008)
highlight that the relationship is the most
significant in-therapy factor in relation to
positive outcomes. The functions of the
therapeutic relationship include variables that
are evidenced regardless of the therapists
theoretical orientation. These are what may be
termed empathy, warmth and acceptance.


Stephen is director of The Centre

for Psychological Therapies at Leeds
Metropolitan University and a
psychotherapist. He has practised
as a therapist for over 30 years and
worked in higher education for
over 20 years. He is co-editor of The
Therapeutic Relationship: Themes and
Perspectives (PCCS , 2008) and has been
commissioned by Sage to write The
Therapeutic Relationship in Counselling
and Psychotherapy (forthcoming:
January 2014).

We propose, as others before us, that these

facilitative conditions are intrinsically
human and furthermore intrinsic to the
human condition. Patterson believed that
these conditions constitute love in the
highest sense or agape (1974: 89,90). If in
some way therapy provides help for the
suffering of people who are missing love in
their lives, then perhaps it is not implausible
to suggest that some kind of love (agape)
is an indispensable ingredient in the
therapeutic relationship itself.

Fear of love in therapy

In our academic work, and our
conversations with colleagues and
students, we note that using the word love,
particularly when considering the love that
the therapist might have for the patient/
client, provokes a sense of caution and
taboo for some. These concerns are packed
with cautions of dynamics of transference,
counter-transference, ethical considerations,
fears of erotic feelings towards clients and
fears of malpractice.
Interestingly however, in relation to this
concept of love, Freud noted in a letter
to Carl Jung in 1906 that psychoanalysis
is in essence a cure through love. In
another context, namely at the Viennese
Psychoanalytic Society, Freud expounded
on the curative factor and power of
psychoanalysis, again stating that it resides
in love meaning transference love. We
concur that perhaps the fear of the erotic
holds back a pure loving encounter.
Given the magnitude of writing in the
psychoanalytic field and in other modalities,
it is clear that the issue of love within the
therapeutic relationship is charged.
We also acknowledge that there have been
developments in the psychoanalytic field,
particularly an openness to explore the
therapeutic relationship as a living dynamic
and to explore the issue of love further.
Ferenczi (1932) wrote:
But if the patient notices that I feel a real
compassion for her and that I am eagerly
determined to search for the causes of
her suffering, she then suddenly not only

becomes capable of giving a dramatic

account of the events but also can talk to
me about them.
(Ferenczi, 1932: 196970, cited in Hayal,
This citation perhaps appears simpler
to understand than some of the earlier
explorations of love, and we realise that
it actually aligns itself with some of the
humanistic person-centred approach
concepts as postulated by Carl Rogers (1959).

Love as therapy
Rogers (1959) postulated six conditions
that, he argued, are necessary and sufficient
for change to occur in therapy. This leads
us to argue that they are in effect the
mechanics of an offer of a love free of
personal conditions to the client. Three
of these conditions, namely empathy,
congruence and unconditional positive
regard (UPR), are to all intents proven to be
fundamental for all successful therapeutic
We concur with Rogers that UPR
corresponds to the Greek concept agape
(1962: 94). Hence we propose this concept
of agape to be non-possessive love,
compassionate love, openness to work with
the other as s/he is, as well as the potential
of what s/he could be. This for us highlights
the relational nature of the therapeutic
relationship as love.
Worsely (2008) draws attention to the work
of the philosopher Martin Buber who invites
us to consider what it means to be human
in relationship. He proposed the I-Thou
quality of relating rather than the I-It
relationship in which the other, including
their problems, is an object. In describing
the quality of this love, he wrote:
Love is near the heart of the I-Thou
intimacy. Love is between the I and the
Thou. Love is inherent in relating. I do not
possess the one I love. In love all aspects of
the other are open to acceptance. The good
and the bad, the beautiful and the ugly,

The therapeutic
relationship is generally
accepted as being the
most important factor
in therapy within the
therapists power
The Psychotherapist

each may become engaged in accepting

Loving. Authentic loving is offering an
unconditionality that invites each aspect of
the other to be uniquely present.
(Worsley, 2008: 118)
We also acknowledge that the love we
are exploring in this article is not without
boundaries but rather active each moment,
acknowledging and communicating
connection as well as the struggles to
connect. This includes the times when we
struggle to be in relationship and when
it is difficult to be in contact. The IThou
and love are about being authentic and
being with the other. We acknowledge
that being in relationship is a process and
not an endpoint. We concur that love as
an adjective therefore becomes a verb,
loving, which acknowledges the changing
and fluid nature of the therapeutic
relational process over time. Schmid
(2001) states that this way of relating
and encounter requires presence, which
is an expression of authenticity. It is this
process of authentic en-counter, and
dialogue, in which the other (the client)
opens up, reveals him/herself, showing
and disclosing, and, in turn, the therapist
acknowledges the persons presence and
loves him/her as a person.
We fully concur here with Rogers (1959)
who through a lot of his work stressed
that what we are referring to as love could
be understood as a process in which the
client moves from a position of seeing
him/herself as unworthy and unlovable,
to realising that s/he is deeply accepted,
respected, deeply understood in contact
and connection. We also agree with
Schmid (2001), who pointed out that ethics
has to be the philosophical starting point
in this loving. The boundary and setting of
the therapeutic space provides the vessel,
and the safety, for authentic meeting.
Loving, in therapy, cannot be reduced to
particular words, therapeutic skills or an
objectified state. Rather, it is an encounter
with a quality of relating, dialogue, contact
and process with each other, moment by
moment, in a way that fully embraces our
We conclude by reaffirming our belief that
love is the agent for change in successful
psychotherapy, and the essence of contact.
We refer to Burton (1967), whose view on
therapy and love is applicable today as it
was then:

The functions of the

therapeutic relationship
are empathy, warmth and
After all research on psychotherapy
is accounted for, psychotherapy still
resolves itself into a relationship best
subsumed by the word love.
(Burton, 1967: 102,103) P

Burton A (1967). Modern humanistic
psychotherapy. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Hayal A (1993). Psychoanalysis and the sciences:
epistemology history [trans Elizabeth Holder].
Berkerley, California: University of California Press.
Patterson CH (1974). Relationship counseling and
psychotherapy. New York: Harper & Row.
Patterson CH and Hidore SC (1997). Successful
psychotherapy: a loving, caring relationship. New
York: Jason-Aronson.
Paul S and Haugh S (eds) (2008). The
relationship not the therapy? What the research
tells us. In S Haugh and S Paul (eds). The
therapeutic relationship: themes and perspectives,
Rogers CR (1962). The interpersonal relationship:
the core of guidance. In CR Rogers and B
Stevens. Person to person. The problem of being
human. Moab: Real People Press, pp89104.
Rogers CR (1959). A theory of therapy,
personality and interpersonal relationships as
developed in the client-centered framework. In
S Koch (ed). Psychology: a study of a science. Vol 3:
Formulations of the person and the social context.
New York: McGraw Hill.
Schmid PF (2001). Authenticity: the person as
his or her own author. Dialogical and ethical
perspectives on therapy as an encounter
relationship. And beyond. In G Wyatt (ed). Rogers
therapeutic conditions evolution, theory and
practice. Volume 1: Congruence. Ross-on-Wye:
PCCS Books.
Worsley R (2008). The ground of our relating,
Martin Bubers I and Thou. In Haugh and Paul
(eds). The therapeutic relationship: perspectives
and themes. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Love as an adjective
becomes a verb, loving,
which acknowledges
the changing and fluid
nature of the therapeutic
relational process over

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love: taking a stance

Contemplating love as socially negotiated, explains Kay McFarlane, illustrates how
therapy can embrace the personal, social and political realms. With every client,
loveindifferencehate are fundamental in the therapeutic context

or therapy to be worthwhile it
needs to have foundations in the
social, cultural and political realms
of human existence. While this
perspective is still not adequately
embedded in many training courses
or in therapists practice, the relevant
arguments are widely discussed.
Debate about the social context of
therapy usually addresses human
diversity, power and oppression. I
advocate that love needs to be added
to this agenda as it is significant
socially, politically and culturally.

Commonly, love is talked about as an

experience between individuals, as if it
were a tangible, pre-existing entity. Even
so, attempting definition is a task akin to
plaiting fog. Here I perceive love broadly, as
a positive care that is socially negotiated. I
propose that love can constitute a broad or
specific stance that we take, and I consider
the implications for therapeutic endeavour.

For me, the opposite of love is indifference,
an absence of engagement. A contrasting
but related attitude to love is hate.
Consequently, I have in mind a simple
triangle of loveindifferencehate.
The stance of indifference can involve lack
of awareness, avoidance or disinterest. At
times indifference can be more terrible
than hate. Whereas hate indicates a level
of interest or presence, we might not
know what an indifferent person or group

Kay McFarlane
Kay is currently returning to
psychotherapy work following a break.
She is a lecturer with a particular interest
in prejudice, identity and oppression. She
relishes working with people on various
courses and runs modules in diversity
and anti-oppressive practice at Leeds
Metropolitan University.


believes or feels. This

can make it difficult to
know where we are in
relation to them. It can
seem more worthwhile
to engage and be
honest when the
other group is (either
lovingly or hatefully)
interested. As she finally
accepted her Nobel
prize, Aung San Suu Kyi
(2012) stated that we
die a little when we are
forgotten. This captures
the significance of
indifference. If a person
or group is indifferent
to us, the message,

The therapeutic context visualised



given or received, is that we are not

important or we are not wanted: for them,
we might not even exist.

Take more notice

We interact with and organise ourselves
and the environment in certain ways.
This manifests itself in social processes,
structures and practices. We are born into
and learn about the world according to
these formal and informal processes and
they are maintained or changed over
time by us (Giddens, 1993). We create and
are created by social processes, including
processes signifying love. Kondrat (2002)
provides the metaphor of a ballet company
actually being the dance. We are not
outside or even inside society, rather we are
society: part of it and creating it at the same
time. This reminds us that social processes
are not static or permanent, that we have
more influence than we might think, and
that everything we say or do impacts on the
universe to a greater or lesser degree.
Our worldview has impact. If our stance
is indifference to social processes, we are
still taking part in them, whether they


are enabling or oppressive. Of course this

includes our beliefs about and participation
in therapeutic work. As Kearney (1996)
convincingly asserts, neutrality is not
possible; if we think we are not taking a
position in therapy, we are colluding with
existing social dynamics. Indifference is
risky because neutrality is not a luxury that
is available to us. With our clients, we are
either examining and challenging existing
power dynamics or we are supporting
them. Social dynamics and processes can
advantage some and disadvantage others.
Perhaps processes that could benefit
everyone, if they applied to everyone,
embody an attitude of love (for example,
being able to marry who we want), while
processes that advantage people by

If we think we are
not taking a position in
therapy then we are
colluding with existing
social dynamics

Ive witnessed many

times how powerful and
potent the experience
and expression of love
and care in a group
can be
disadvantaging others embody indifference
or hate (for example, organising the
world as if there were two genders, which
marginalises many of us). Therapists need
to notice and investigate social processes
that are taken for granted, hidden or
complicated, so they have more choice
about those they support or resist. We
are always taking a stance. We need to
choose more carefully when and how we
take a stance of love, hate or indifference.
It is worthwhile considering where in the
triangle we feel most comfortable, the place
we rarely visit and where we spend most

Love as a stance
Love is given less attention as a social
process, so it is our stance of love that
particularly needs clarification and
development. Aung San Suu Kyi (2012)
declared that there can never be enough
kindness in the world and even tiny acts
of kindness can change peoples lives.
Sometimes when we talk about love it
can sound like a pretentious, weak or
twee avoidance of conflict or complexity.
However, dismissing expressions of love as
trite or indulgent is a potential trap. When
doing experiential work with groups, Ive
witnessed many times how powerful and
potent the experience and expression of
love and care in a group can be, and how
exploration so often leads to increased
engagement with extremely challenging
material. Love can be courageous, strong
and confronting. In spite of the pervasive
notions of romantic love throughout many
cultures, it is relevant and significant that
in training groups people often realise
that they find it easier to express anger
or hate than non-romantic love and care.
It is certainly worth investigating the
social origins and significance of this. To
shrink from considering love might serve
competitive, individualistic and destructive
dynamics. It might lead to spending more
time in the hate or indifference corners
of the loveindifferencehate triangle, in

The Psychotherapist

which some groups gain at the expense

of others.

Engaging with attitudes of love

We are continuously shifting between
social and relational attitudes of love,
indifference and hate. We could therefore
envisage therapy as a place where the
client and therapist engage with each
others attitudes of love, indifference and
hate. This necessitates the therapist being
willing and able to articulate their own
stance, facilitate exploration of the clients
stance and negotiate the encounter of each
others stances. For example, a therapist
might need to face their own indifference
to a social norm that conveys hatred of
the client. It is often beneficial to explicitly
express to our clients our stance on
pertinent social issues. This at least reduces
the inevitable unnoticed reproduction of
social processes, gives clients more choice
about how and whether to engage, and
avoids assumptions that we can be neutral.

Crucial interweaving
Habitually overlooking or excluding social
processes from the therapy arena reduces
therapy to a very limited exploration of a
tiny element of the clients existence. It is
therefore inadequate to explore only clients
experience and expressions of love or to
address feelings of love between therapist
and client; this risks limiting the work to the
personal or individualistic realm. We also
need to examine the social, political and
cultural significance of love. For example,
a client may talk about wanting to find a
loving, committed life partner. The therapist
may explore with the client their feelings,
their relationships with early carers, their
previous romantic relationships and their
current relational patterns. This might be
useful to a degree, but it risks facilitating
the client to live his/her life according to
prevailing norms and values.
A therapist who incorporates social and
political realms into their practice might
also explore this clients place in the
world, the origin of their ideas about love
and how love influences or shapes his/
her life. Similarly, if or when therapist and
client feel love (or indifference or hate)
towards each other, as well as exploring the
challenging personal resonances, links need
to be explored in the social and political
realms. How we perceive, talk about and
experience love is culturally, socially and
politically significant (Foucault, 1976), and

It is often beneficial
to explicitly express to
our clients our stance on
pertinent social issues
therefore advantages and disadvantages
various groups in various ways. For example,
consider who loses and gains from notions
of maternal and paternal love, of romantic
love being the cornerstone of pairings, and
of the variability in the human capacity for

Helping people adjust to versions of

the world
Unless we are content for therapy to be a
way of helping people into conforming to
social norms, it needs to examine how we
are influenced and constructed, as well as
how we actively influence and construct.
Therapy can help people adjust to certain
versions of the world or it can help to
unpack those versions so that clients
can decide how and to what they adjust.
Currently most therapy is firmly located in
the personal realm, with occasional dips
into social and cultural realms. The personal
and social realms are ultimately inseparable;
therapy needs to interweave them and
move with clients fluidly between realms.
Perhaps therapy could even contribute to
restoring the unhelpful split.
Contemplating love as socially negotiated
illustrates how therapy can embrace the
personal, social and political realms. Many
of us tend to pick up and put down the
issues of inequality and power in our
therapy work, depending on whether were
working with a client who is different from
us, whereas justice and power (and love
indifferencehate) are fundamental at every
moment with every client, as well as in all
processes in the therapeutic context. P

Aung San Suu Kyi (2012). BBC News.16 June [live
broadcast: TV].
Foucault M (1976). The history of sexuality: an
introduction. Harmondsworth, Penguin.
Giddens A (1993). New rules of the sociological
method (2nd ed). Stanford: Stanford University
Kearney A (1996). Counselling, class and politics:
undeclared influences in therapy. Ross-on-Wye:
PCCS Books.
Kondrat M (2002). Actor-centred social work:
re-visioning person-in-environment through a
critical theory lens. Social Work, 47(4), pp435448.


Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Therapeutic encounter
a kind of loving
The emotional connection between client and therapist is at the core of therapy,
regardless of theoretical orientation, explain David Bott and Pam Howard. But
theory and an objective setting can help to keep away the turmoil
Trouble begins, though, when you find, of
the pigeons being put into Skinner boxes,
that first of all there is a rule in the lab that
nobody but a particular lady is allowed
to handle the pigeons. And then you find
that the pigeons adore the lady who puts
them in the boxes, that they swoon with
pleasure in her hands. And this part of
the story is not generally recorded in the
research results. Because love, you see, is
not what it is supposed to be about.
(Gregory Bateson, in Kirschenbaum
and Henderson, 1990: 187)

he work of psychotherapy is
largely concerned with love
(Bott, 2001; Howard, 2008). It seeks
to bring about an exploration of the
clients own unique way of loving, or,
as Sigmund Freud famously stated,


Pam is principal lecturer and course

leader of the MSc Psychotherapy at
the University of Brighton. She is also
a UKCP- registered psychoanalytic
psychotherapist in private practice. She
has been chief executive of UKCP and has
chaired the Universities Psychotherapy
and Counselling Association. She
writes on aspects of the psychoanalytic
therapeutic relationship and her book, coauthored with David Bott, The therapeutic
encounter: a cross-modality approach has
recently been published by Sage.


his specific method for conducting his

erotic life. The clients particular way
of conducting their intimate, relational
and erotic life is thought to be at
the root of suffering. The interplay
between love and suffering is at the
very heart of the psychotherapeutic
relationship. Psychotherapeutic
narratives are characterised by a series
of accounts of how the human infant
comes to be who he or she is and how
he or she sustains this in later life.

The work of
psychotherapy is largely
concerned with love. It
seeks to bring about an
exploration of the
clients own unique way
of loving

Despite important differences, they share

a belief in the formative nature of our
experiences of early relationships. In order
to protect ourselves against suffering
in infancy, we engage in what might be
called distortions of love. These distortions
seek to balance the need to gain the love
of those on whom we depend with the
need to protect ourselves from suffering.

Paradoxically for most clients who find

themselves in psychotherapy, these
distortions, originally designed to mitigate
suffering, are now, in adulthood, at the
heart of their distress.

David Bott

David Bott is director of studies in

psychotherapy at the University
of Brighton and a UKCP-registered
systemic psychotherapist. His
publications include a number of
papers which address the relationship
between theories and models of
psychotherapy and counselling. He is
co-author with Pam Howard, of The
therapeutic encounter: a cross-modality

Enduring themes of human

The position we take is that all
therapeutic narratives are organised
around enduring themes in human
relatedness (Bott and Howard, 2012)
which arise out of early experiences
of love, family context and social
arrangements. These themes are
encapsulated in the problem saturated
story brought by the client. In essence,
they are complex love stories, which have
given rise to confusing feelings of desire,
abandonment, anger and hurt, providing
the content around which sessions take
place. As the details of this love story
unfold, they are also enacted with an
implicit invitation for the therapist to join
in the performance. Against this, they are
faced with the task of opening the way to
a more productive kind of loving.
For example, the client who has
experienced early significant losses and
abandonment faces the dilemma of
finding love when they are unable to
allow themselves to be vulnerable. In the

Short of doing nothing

at all, therapy takes its
most passive form when
process is reduced to
therapeutic encounter, the request for
help may well be present as an attack on
the therapist. Treating fear as information,
the therapist is more likely to form a
productive engagement if the clients
protective strategies are recognised and
respected. Again, where expressions of
need are met by emotional unavailability,
the client will have learnt to cut off. Here,
the therapist needs to look beyond the
absence of obvious signs of distress,
seeking connection with the clients
internal world. Equally, a particular child
in the family may be allocated the task
of keeping others happy. As the client
acts out the old story, the therapist needs
to be wary of seduction. Faced with the
oppositionality that can be a feature of a
childhood characterised by restrictive or
punitive controls, the therapist will do well
to side step the transferential invitation
to be controlling in favour of humour and
playfulness. Where the need for intimacy
has been experienced as a threat, either
in terms of intrusion or abandonment,
the therapist may find themselves
allocated the role of applauding audience.
Productive intervention will require that
this passive position is declined and
connection is made with the frightened,
lonely toddler hiding behind the desperate

Enacting the drama

Different theoretical models will
account for the enactment of the
drama through a range of established
theoretical constructs. They provide an
understanding of why people persist
in repeating their early love stories,
even when these are systematically
disadvantageous (Hoffman, 1993).
Daniel Stern et al (1998) introduced the
concept of implicit relational knowing to
describe the infants experience of their
mothers love. Operating on the basis of
prediction, implicit relational knowing
underpins all our interactions and
informs how to be with another. Our
experiences of love thus inform the

The Psychotherapist

shape and form of all our relationships.

The client has come to therapy because
what had started with the potential to
be a love story or romance has become
a tragedy. Central to the tragedic
experience is the notion of harmatia. An
incident in the plot leads the protagonist
on a path of tragic error. In therapy, the
client is both author and protagonist
of his or her own tragedy. As therapists,
our appreciation of the clients courage
in adversity is not enough in itself. We
are required to join the client on stage
and take an active part in the drama to
take on the role of a deus ex machina. In
the therapeutic encounter, the therapist
is craned on to the stage in order to
interfere with the tragic outcome of
the clients drama. The human romance
is far too conflicted and complicated
for simplistic intervention and even
good endings are seldom happy. At the
same time, predicted outcomes can be
confounded and the way opened for
a richer narrative to replace a thin and
predictable plot.

The core of therapy

It is now well established that the quality
of emotional connection between the
client and the therapist is at the core
of therapy, regardless of theoretical
orientation. This requires active
engagement and, significantly, an open
heart. While training and personal work
will have some impact, they do not render
the therapist immune to the emotional
dilemmas that have shaped their own
place in the world. Whole stretches of
time are spent in a confined space where
painful stories are told and powerful
emotions are expressed. The therapist can
find him or herself feeling inadequate,
angry and inclined to do the least helpful
thing retreat from the client. This may
take the obvious form of simply giving up
on them. Therapeutic passivity provides
more subtle variants. The therapist can
find any number of ways of avoiding
engaging in the relationship with the
client. One way of being unavailable is
by putting the theory before the client
they become a case rather than a person.
This opens the way to the glamour of

Therapy requires active

engagement and an
open heart

Implicit relational
knowing underpins all
our interactions and
informs how to be with
theory. Elegant conceptual constructions
provide fascinating accounts of the
problem, preferably with references to
obscure papers. Here, the therapist is
more in love with their approach than
concerned to make emotional connection
with their client. At the other extreme,
therapeutic passivity can show itself in a
kind, mindless, warm relating. While this
gives the appearance of valuing the client
it misses the point by privileging a set
of generalised relational principles over
the complexities of the clients emotional
world. Arguably, short of doing nothing
at all, therapy takes its most passive form
when process is reduced to procedure. The
encounter can be rendered entirely safe by
doggedly following a set of prescriptions
laid down by the model. When the
unpredictable shows itself, it is neutralised
by a distraction in the form of a contentbased activity. Timelines, geneograms
and objective setting can be particularly
helpful in keeping away the turmoil and
uncertainty that arises when two human
beings connect emotionally. In essence,
what we have here is a range of strategies
for ensuring that love does not enter the
therapy room. P

Bott D (2001). Towards a family-centred therapy.
Postmodern developments in family therapy
and the person-centred contribution. Counselling
Psychology Quarterly, 14( 2), pp111118.
Bott D and Howard P (2012). The drama of the
therapeutic encounter: a cross-modality approach.
Hoffman L (1993). Exchanging voices: a
collaborative approach to family therapy. London:
Howard P (2008). Psychoanalytic psychotherapy.
In S Paul and S Haugh (eds). The therapeutic
relationship. London: Process Press.
Kirschenbaum H and Henderson V (eds) (1990).
Carl Rogers dialogues. London: Constable.
Stern D et al (1998). Non-intepretative
mechanisms in psychoanalytic therapy:
the something more than interpretation.
International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 79,


Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Transcultural perspectives on
love and hate: the yin and yang of
relationships, within and without therapy
Divine Charura and Professor Colin Lago explore the nature of love from
various transcultural perspectives

oday, more than ever, the world

in which we live has become
increasingly multicultural and this is
becoming represented in the therapy
rooms in which we work. We often
use the phrase: the world can come
into your therapy room. As such, it
has become more important for us, as
therapists, to be aware of the impact
of culture, heritage and identity on
the issue of love and hate. In this
article we will explore the multifaceted
nature of love and hate from different
transcultural perspectives.
Given the paucity of writing about love and
hate from transcultural perspectives, and
the impact of this dynamic in therapy, the
intentions of this article are to stimulate
readers towards a) a greater appreciation
and awareness of the diverse nature,

Colin Lago

Colin, D. Litt, was director of the

counselling service at the University of
Sheffield from 1987 to 2003. He now
works as an independent counsellor,
trainer, supervisor and consultant. He
is a fellow of the British Association
for Counselling and Psychotherapy, an
accredited counsellor/psychotherapist
and UKRC-registered practitioner. Deeply
committed to transcultural concerns in
psychotherapy, he has published articles,
videos and books on the subject.


functions and impact of love and hate

in the transcultural arena, b) to reflect
on their own unique and frequently
complex relational experiences in and
outside therapy, and c) to explore their
potential and strategies for managing this
rather complex and, at times, unfamiliar,
uncomfortable aspect of the relational
bonds which clients may bring to the
therapy room. Through our experience of
working with clients from different parts
of the world, we are aware that issues
of love and hate are areas that require
tentativeness and careful attention.
We also wish to acknowledge the important
work conducted by Suzanne Keys
(2010), whose extensive development of
taxonomy of love in therapy has provided
a springboard from which to develop our
thinking here.

Love and hate from a transcultural

There is an array of literature, film, art
and poetry that depicts and concurs that
love has many different forms. From
a transcultural perspective, there is a
difference between cultures that promote
the independent self and those that
promote the interdependent self. As such,
love and hate are interwoven into this way
of being.
Charura (2011) gives an example of how the
African self is understood through Ubuntu
African philosophy, which emerges from the
belief that the individual, independent self
is not an entity because a person is only a
person through other persons. This implies
that, from this cultural stance, in relation to
love, the individual is more concerned with
making choices in which interrelatedness,
societal norms, values and expectations
are esteemed higher than self-needs. It is

only through this interrelatedness, love

and respect of others, that one becomes a
person. Prior to becoming a person through
relationship and connectedness with other
people, the individual is regarded as an it
(Charura, 2011). From this perspective, it is
seen that not all humans are persons, as
personhood has to be acquired.
Charura (2011) argued that through this
philosophy personhood is bestowed
on the individual by others and, further,
that individuals can be de-personified
to become an it. Charura used the term
de-personified to describe the process
in which personhood is stripped by
others. This process occurs if individuals
do not adhere to the cultural qualities of
Ubuntu philosophy, particularly to those
characteristics which include community
engagement, involvement, compassion,
care, gentleness, respect, empathy and
love, while simultaneously esteeming
these values higher than self-needs and
independence. Non-adherence to societal
values, norms and expectations (which
often depict expectations of who to love,
how to love and taboos) results in hate of
and for the nonconforming individual. A
typical example is that choice of partner
is often heavily influenced by communal
cultural values, and at times choice and
approval is also influenced by others. This is
based on how the person will fit in with the
cultural expectations, values and norms.
For the transgressing individual, hatred
develops for the cultural group that is depersonifing them, which frequently results
in them experiencing psychological distress
because of being discriminated against for
making choices which oppose the cultural
philosophical stance and expectations.
Although Ubuntu philosophy is given

Some cultures promote

the independent self
and others the
interdependent self
above as an example of a transcultural
perspective which influences love and hate,
we acknowledge that it is synonymous with
other cultures in which perspectives of love
and hate include the following ten points:
1. The description and value placed
on love by different cultures: ie love
between two individuals, families and
the communities expectations of love.
Cultural values and norms can esteem
love as serving interdependence as well
as independence.
2. The love process and way of being in
relationship: ie relating to how love
happens, falling in love versus growing
to love?
3. Love, sex and intimacy: there is wide
differentiation in transcultural views on
love, sex, and intimacy.
4. Love, culture and power: the tension
between own choice versus communal/
family choice such as in arranged
5. Cultural view, ethics and laws on love:
this aspect includes monogamous
versus polygamous arrangements,
acceptable age of romantic love and
marriage, and views on cross-cultural
6. The spiritual dimension of love: love
as a spiritual encounter; love as sacred
and serving the purpose of procreation
versus love as liberal and the exercise of
free will.
7. Life cycles of life and love: stages
through life, which include the
remarrying of a widow or widower by
immediate family versus free choice to
remarry or not at any point.
8. Death and love: cultural views on the
impact of death on love, views on the
afterlife and continuing love bonds
after death versus ending bonds.
9. Shame and transgression of love: love
as the ultimate expression within
heterosexual couples with no room
for non-heterosexual relationships,

The Psychotherapist

divorce, promiscuity, free love, or actions

contrary to the cultural norms.
10. Hate: this serves the purpose to
punish, bring shame and control those
considered to have transgressed.
Paradoxically, hate may also manifest
through the use of voodoo and
other non-scientifically explicable
phenomena to make individuals love
more or fear transgressing.

Hate from a transcultural

The African American writer on
multicultural counselling, Clemmont
Vontress, has coined the term transgenerational hatred to describe the
phenomenon of cross-generational
transmission of inherited hatred. He even
wonders if this phenomenon is linked to
the increased incidence of heart attacks
experienced by African American males
as compared to other ethnic groups in the
USA (Vontress, 2012).
The development of the ethnic identity
development models in recent decades
in North America (psychological models
that hypothesise the stages one might
grow through in relation to ones own
identity and that of the different other)
have been profoundly useful in theorising
the emergence of hate as an inevitable
element of growth towards eventual
capacity to accept both self and the
other with comfort. These models, while
significant contributions in themselves,
have been researched as to their potential
implications for application in transcultural
therapy settings (Carter, 1990). The research,
simplistically explained, indicated that
where therapists were at the same or
slightly more advanced levels of identity
development, compared with their clients,
they tended to have more successful
therapeutic outcomes.
In transcultural settings, the clients
expression of hate, either directly towards
the therapist or towards other targets,
might provoke intense discomfort, fear and
anxiety in the therapist. Transferentially,
the therapist might become the focus
of such hate. This scenario is particularly
easy to imagine in circumstances where
the therapist might hail from the majority
group in society and the client from a
minority group.
Hate certainly has vitality and energy. It
can be a rationalising energy giving life

meaning and sense: I am because I hate

you. Of concern here is how the therapist
is able to manage and withstand this to
facilitate the clients own work.

Concluding thoughts
We note that the list of ten points featured
above and the subsequent ideas related
to hate are profoundly interlinked with
individuals cultures, experiences and hence
world views. Such aspects are therefore
important for therapists to be aware of,
and we have experience that these cultural
values or positions often impact on clients
in ways which may cause them confusion,
anger, pain, hate or other emotions which
emerge in the therapeutic encounter.
Furthermore, we are aware that clients
experiences may result in them projecting
onto the therapist a diverse range of
feelings. How then do we, as therapists, deal
with such dynamics? For example, how do
we cope when clients hate or indeed love
us? Here we turn to Winnicott whose wise
words resonate profoundly:
You accept love and even the in-love
state without flinching and without
acting out your response. You accept
hate, and meet it with strength rather
than revenge.
(Winnicott, 1963: 229) P

Carter RT (1990). The influence of race and racial
identity in psychotherapy: towards a racially
inclusive model. New York: John Wiley and Sons.
Charura D (2011). The effects of an African
heritage. In C Lago (ed) (2011). The handbook of
transcultural counselling and psychotherapy. Open
University Press/McGraw-Hill.
Keys S (2010). Love in therapy: risks, costs and
challenges. Presentation to Person Centred
Association Conference, Belgium, June.
Vontress C (2012). Counseling across the cultural
divide: the Clemmont Vontress reader. Ross-OnWye: PCCS Books.
Winnicott D (1963). The mentally ill in your case
load. In DW Winnicott (1965). The maturational
processes and the facilitating environment:
studies in the theory of emotional development.
International Psycho-analytical Library. London:
Hogarth Press and Institute of Psychoanalysis, pp

It is only through this

interrelatedness, love and
respect of others, that
one becomes a person

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love in the therapy room

feature article

Love, separation and reconciliation:

systemic theory and its relationship
with emotions
Aspects of love can be brought into the therapy room through small acts,
words or physical feelings, says Paula Boston. Negotiations around other difficult
differences may be thus made more possible

ystemic therapists have generally

thought about love in terms of
nurturance, affection, attunement
and attachment. In couple therapy,
the meaning of love may be
expanded to more directly connect
to intimate sexual expression or
its relevance to commitment to the
partnership. Systemic therapy values
multiple meanings between people;
a static and singular meaning for
love holds little interest and is not
often represented as a key word in
systemic literature.
What is more engaging is the complexity
of love. Problems of love generate very


Paula Boston is a UKCP-registered family

psychotherapist and AFT-registered
supervisor. She trained as a family
therapist at the Tavistock Institute, and is
qualified as an MSW social worker. She
is currently director of family therapy
training at the University of Leeds and
co-investigator on a large trial comparing
family therapy with treatment as usual for
adolescents who self-harm. Her interests
are in training, clinical supervision,
organisational consultation, narrative
therapy, self-harm and research protocols
for family therapy.


different questions between people. Is

there too much or too little love? Is its
availability consistent or sporadic? Is it
appropriate to developmental needs? Is it
negotiated or imposed? Is its expression
socially sanctioned? Is it a source of shame
or social control? Is there dissonance
between the internal experience and the
external demonstration or between how
participants understand the acts referred
to as love? The meaning of loves problems
will be both highly contextual and specific
to the clients, who are influenced by micro
and broader cultural meaning systems in
which their sense of self develops.

Love in the foreground

Love was a simple and central entity for
Virginia Satir, one of the original American
family therapists of the 1960s. Influenced
by the human potential movement, Satir
supported the individuals efforts to be
more authentic and accepted for who
they are. She saw love as intrinsic to the
individual but also expressed between
people. This emphasis on interactions
between people was central, as family
therapy intends to distinguish itself from
other practices that focus on the interior
psychological life of the individual.
Structural family therapy was concerned
with developmentally appropriate
emotional bonds between family members.
Too much love was seen as enmeshed;
not enough was disengaged. The therapist
would act to hot up the level of concern
or actively interrupt exchanges. Minuchin
(1993), its developer, wrote of seeing
people trapped in self defeating patterns of
disharmony but also possessing untapped
sources of support, love and care.

A static and singular

meaning for love holds
little interest and is not
often represented as a
key word in systemic
Love as pattern
Bateson and the Palo Alto group studied
communication. Contradictions between the
verbal expression of love and the physical
demonstration were of central concern. An
exchange between the parent who says,
I love you to the child, but at the same
time withdraws or flinches physically, was
seen as creating a disturbing double bind.
Batesons subsequent cybernetic emphasis
led to understanding patterns in the family
as feedback loops of stability or change. An
act of love could engender further closeness
or be met with rejection, which in turn
could lead to a cycle of escalating rejection,
declarations of love or accommodation. Love
or any emotion could therefore be seen as
information for the system.
Circular questions developed as a
technique to track emotions as information
about difference. When John says that to be
a loving parent he has to be strict, how does
that fit with Mary, who believes that loving
is more about listening? Circular questions
were found to increase empathy between
family members (Dozier et al, 1998). Another
way of working from a systemic perspective
is to use narrative therapy techniques that
focus on externalising. This maps the effects
of the problematic emotion on the clients
identity, relationships and intensions for

their lives. An example of externalising is

questioning a client: when the obsessive
part of love is around, how does that
interfere with your view of yourself as
person who values equality in relationships?
When your partner hears you are upset
about how the obsessive behaviour affects
her, how does that influence her hopes for
the marriage?

Current theory
The emphasis on cognitions made way for
social constructionism, which emphasised
language creating between people. Values
could be seen as a societal production of
options rather than innate characteristics
of the individual. The position of strict
but loving parent in the paragraph earlier
could be understood in the context of
current discourses about tough love or
historical ones of spare the rod. Love can be
understood in terms of western romantic
true love or filial love of obedience and
self-sacrifice. This constructionist theory
allowed clients to experience less personal
blame and more freedom to question the
embedded assumptions.
In its efforts to develop a more relational
understanding between people, did
systemic therapy do so at a cost of not fully
attending to the individual felt experience?
In response, more emphasis was placed
on the nuanced detail and emotional
atmosphere of conversation. It was referred
to as experience near conversation or a
thick rather than thin story. Parry (1998)
suggests that it is the very intensity in the
emotional storytelling that moves family
members to have more empathic, attuned
reactions. Social constructionists expanded
to include embodied conversational
practices beyond words. Small utterances or
body language could be seen as indications
of important potential communication.

Case study
Peter, in a family therapy session, provides a
highly emotional account of the time when
he saw his granddaughter, Penny, drive
recklessly away into oncoming traffic. She
was nearly killed as she was escaping from

Small utterances or
body language could
be seen as indications
of important potential
The Psychotherapist

her mother, Gill, who was struggling with

the onset of a serious mental health illness
(Gill is Peters daughter).
The first telling of the incident in therapy
featured his anger at his granddaughter,
who, in his eyes, abandoned his daughter.
He was also angry at Gills failure to
acknowledge the abandonment by Penny.
The conversation was revisited during the
next session. Peter described having had an
epiphany, a realisation of how persistently
critical he had been of his granddaughter in
the face of his daughters illness. He sobbed
with remorse about not recognising Pennys
distress. He was then reassured by Gill that
he was forgiven, and Gills wish for more
understanding of Penny was then taken up.
The exchange between Peter and Gill
could be described in interactional terms
of pattern. Peters criticism of Penny, as the
source of Gills emotional distress, had been
a recurrent theme, and initially this was
another episode. Family commitments were
very significant to him and his beliefs about
his parental responsibility featured strongly.
He felt love and protection for his daughter,
which was often displayed in frustration
and anger with others.
The powerful emotions in the telling and
retelling of the event contributed to a
significant new understanding for both
Gill and Peter. Peters anger and justified
protectiveness was listened to but also
available for consideration. The turning
point seemed to be related to a question
about whether his strong feelings of care
and fear for Gill got in the way of his ability
to consider how frightened Penny must
have been. The epiphany seemed to arise
from the connection to both the anger and
fear as well as to love and protectiveness.
Peters capacity to feel remorse allowed
Gill to show love. Systemic therapy, while
continuing to place emotions in a relational
frame, has a fuller account, which includes
less distinction between the individual
felt experience, family pattern and cultural

Systemic therapists are encouraged to
consider the relevant system not only of
relationships of people, their language
constructions, but also relationships
between words, expressions and bodily
felt experiences. The careful attention
to subtleties of language brings family
therapists closer to the psychodynamic

The therapists capacity

to directly support a
contemporaneous new
noticing of love can have
profound consequences
for all participants
approach, and the attentiveness nonverbal communication may create further
links with those concerned with body
In line with considering love in therapy,
Tomm et al (1998) proposed an ethical
and therapeutic view of love as involving
opening space for the enlivened existence
of others. Family therapists, however,
continue to be reluctant to use the word
love. I believe that communications of
love may be found in small acts, words
or physical feelings not fully available for
expression. Such communication brings
forth aspects of love into the therapy
room, which makes negotiations around
other difficult differences more possible.
Furthermore, the therapists capacity to
directly support a contemporaneous
new noticing of love can have profound
consequences for all participants and is
one of the distinctive features of family
and systemic therapy. Considering the
case study and points raised in this paper,
I suggest that the way in which the many
meanings of love are actively put in the
foreground of therapy needs further
expression. P

Dozier R, Hicks M, Cornille T and Peterson G (1998).
The effect of Tomms therapeutic questioning
styles on therapeutic alliance: a clinical analog
study. Family Process, 37(2), pp189200.
Minuchin S and Nichols M (1993). Family healing:
tales of hope and renewal from family therapy. New
York: Free Press.
Parry TA (1998). Reasons of the heart: the
narrative construction of emotions. Journal of
Systemic Therapies, 17(2), pp6578.
Tomm K, Hoyt MF and Madigan SP (1998).
Honoring our internalized others and the ethics
of caring: a conversation with Karl Tomm. In MF
Hoyt (ed). The handbook of constructive therapies:
innovative approaches from leading practitioners.
San Francisco: Jossey Bass, pp198218.


Love in the therapy room

feature article


Sharing concepts to support Black

issues in the therapeutic process
Psychotherapists and counsellors often lack confidence when working
therapeutically with Black issues, which may be unfamiliar. Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga
shares her experience of developing a Black empathetic approach.

would like to share some of the concepts that

I have developed to assist the exploration of
Black issues in the therapeutic process (MckenzieMavinga, 2005).1 I have called these concepts a
Black empathic approach, ancestral baggage,
Black western archetypes and recognition trauma,
and they arose from discussions about racism in
psychotherapy with trainee counsellors and my own
experiences when training. Trainees main concerns
focused on not feeling confident about working
therapeutically with cultural diversity and Black
issues. They asked questions such as: how can I raise
issues of race and culture and difference with a client
who doesnt raise it when I feel it is an issue? How
can I empathise when I dont know what it is like to
be Black? Why do I feel more comfortable as a Black
counsellor when presented with a Black client?


Isha is a published writer/poet

and integrative transcultural
psychotherapist, lecturer, trainer,
supervisor and member of UKCP. She
taught for 26 years and is a fellow of the
Higher Education Academy. Isha has
worked in mental health, with women
impacted by violence in relationships
and as a student counsellor. Her
approach facilitates dialogue and
exploration of oppression, internalised
oppression, stereotyping and power
relationships. She is particularly
interested in the dichotomy of racism
and homophobia and the use of
transformation ritual in the process of


Rupture and powerful

Discussions between
trainees about racism
created ruptures and
evoked powerful feelings.
White students spoke of
guilt and fear of being
called the racist and
Black students feared
upsetting the White
students in telling their
experiences of racism.
One student exclaimed: It
is dangerous and difficult.
This shared dilemma
created a block. Black
students became the
experts and caretakers of
the White students, but
it then became apparent

that their own training needs were not being fully met.
Inevitably this raises questions about how Black issues and
racism are addressed with clients. Ragina, an Indian therapist,
shares how she coped with this challenge:
Training was not readily applicable to people from my
culture and therefore my work with Asian people would have
to be carefully considered, keeping the appropriate values
in focus. We had a Black support group, which was very
helpful. We took our insights back to the main group. I dont
feel that I learnt a lot of theory regarding Black issues when I
was training. I had to do a lot of the work myself about these
issues outside of the course, as it wasnt really available in
terms of our training, which was mainly Eurocentric.

The empathetic capacity of the relationship

Listening to these difficulties while trying to make sense of
Black issues brings an image of being gagged. The theme
of Black issues is pertinent, but expression is silenced by the
underlying emotions. It became clear that students needed a
framework to understand the clientcounsellor relationship
in the context of Black issues: something additional to
theories they were learning about that supported their
empowerment and would not perpetuate institutional
racism.2 The empathic capacity of the relationship needed to
be considered. The historical and intergenerational context
of the experience needed mapping and ultimately trauma
related to the experience of racism needed to be processed.
These three elements of the therapists response are
important for the safety and wellbeing of the client.
The first concept,a Black empathic approach, offers a response
that specifically and sensitively relates to a clients racial and
cultural experiences as they express them and as the therapist
intuitively recognises them. This approach requires the
therapeutic skill of emotional connection, a shared context
of the impact of racism and empathic responses built around
awareness of self in relation to Black issues. It is also important to
recognise the sociocultural context of survival, from slavery and
colonialism, that created rifts between Black and Asian people.

1 It must be noted that not all individuals from African and Asian backgrounds identify as Black, so I am using
the term Black people to include people of colour as they are the most visible minority and least represented in
the field of psychotherapy and counselling.
2 Tuckwell G (2002: 17) describes institutional racism as consisting of established laws, customs and practices
that unfairly restrict the opportunities of defined groups of people, whether or not the individuals maintaining
these practices have racist intentions.

Living in a racist society

Exposing the archetypes

Whether fully aware or not, Black people have in common the

distresses caused by living in a racist society. It is therefore
important to consider how racism functions in the institutional
fabrics that mirror these issues and whether therapists have
enough support to respond in anti-oppressive ways. To the
therapist this may seem like going into the rainforest without
a guide, yet they may have found it easier to engage with
other types of hidden territory in the clients material. So the
therapists own personal development and hidden powerful
emotions about racism may need to be considered.

In early sessions, Jacinta assigned her power to me, expecting

me to ask questions and offer solutions. I felt she portrayed a
Black western archetype of subservience, sometimes called step
and fetch it. In Jungs (1972) terms, together we exposed the
archetypes. I held out the challenge of her ability to show herself
to me without threat to her physical or emotional being. This
included sensitivity towards her as a Black woman. Shame and
embarrassment related to her past were acknowledged and
she confirmed that my ability to reflect the significance of the
beatings was important in her therapy. Work with Jacinta in a
Black on Black context also assisted my confidence in facing the
intergenerational impact of racism. This approach is supported
by White therapists who are able to acknowledge the context
of racism in a Black clients life. A Black client reported that she
felt relieved when her White counsellor pointed out the racism
in her workplace, which she was finding difficult to name in her
sessions. In these contexts, the client is empowered and has
opportunities to rehearse challenges to institutional racism.

The second concept, ancestral baggage, refers to what

gets passed on intergenerationally that can be influenced
by upbringing, sociocultural frameworks and education.
For example, humiliation is a major feature of racism and
therefore a feature of ancestral baggage. How do therapists
consider this aspect of humiliation in their work with Black
clients? For Black clients, humiliation manifests in ways that
racism becomes normalised as an everyday experience in
their lives, often creating low self-esteem. Intergenerational
distresses evolving from slavery and colonialism, such as skin
shadism and harsh disciplinary experiences from parents or
carers, also become normalised.

No right to be here
Jacinta, a client of Jamaican heritage, suffered denial of her
birth father and a negative gaze from her stepfather, coupled
with the pain of beatings. Being ignored by the family and
the burden of shame and embarrassment, in addition to
racism in her workplace, caused her to believe that she had
no right to be here.
These intergenerational processes are transmitted via a
third concept I call the Black western archetype. Black
western archetypes are essentially Eurocentric, unconscious
psychological processes portrayed in the relational process.
When made apparent by mirroring, they reflect how racism
permeates the collective unconscious and psychology of
Black peoples. This concept is derived from a combination of
traditional theory and an idea about Black issues.
Jungs view of archetypes (1972), as symbolic representations
of the human psyche that can be altered by becoming
conscious, is significantly located in the concept of Black
western archetypes and the influence of culture and
racism on the unconscious: Fanon suggests that the racist
contents of the collective conscious are imposed by White
culture (VanoyAdams, 1996: 165). Inherited psychological
patterns become influenced by racist images, behaviour and
attitudes that can be recognised in the unconscious life of
Black people. They are recognisable in outer behaviour and
attitude, and known as internalised racism3 in individuals.
These psychological patterns are also portrayed in the family
structures of both perpetrators and survivors of racism.
Following Jungs perception that once the shadow archetype
is made conscious it can be modified gives hope for the
process of recovery from racism.

Racism as perpetrator or victim

Making conscious Black western archetypes evokes a process
that I have called recognition trauma. This fourth concept
refers to powerful emotions linked to an awareness of racism
either as a perpetrator or victim. These emotions either
come to the fore as shame, guilt, fear or rage, or they block
feelings and expression as defences of denial or dissociation.
Black people experience powerful feelings about the hurt
of racism and White people experience power issues in the
context of witnessing Black peoples experiences of racism.
Once these emotions come to consciousness, this process
can be worked through.
The concepts ancestral baggage, Black western archetypes
and recognition trauma work together in the process of
understanding the intergenerational influences of racism on
the psyche that support a Black empathic approach. I discuss
these concepts more extensively in my book (MckenzieMavinga, 2009). On reflection, the block created between
students could be viewed as a symptom of recognition
trauma, an awakening of powerful feelings related to the
impact of racism.

A key role for therapists

Racism and recognition trauma need to be understood and
worked through by both the victim and oppressor, otherwise
internalised oppression can occur. When traumatic experiences
occur as a response to racism and prejudice it is not easy to
remain aware that both oppressor and victim have been
hurt. In counselling situations, this awareness may support
both counsellor and client. When working through my own
awareness of these roles, I try to remember that we cannot
change the past, where we may have learned the role of victim
or oppressor, but we do have a choice about influencing the
future. I believe that therapists can play a key role in promoting
a healthy psychology that values African and Asian identities
and contradicts racism and internalised racism. Here are some
ways of using these concepts to support this approach:

3 This is a negative, usually unconscious, acting out or acting towards self, in ways that can be emotionally harmful and distort identity. For Black
people, in its extreme, this can be seen in skin bleaching and skin scraping caused by a wish to be White.

The Psychotherapist


Black issues and integrate learning into skills and
theory modules in training courses.
a Black empathic approach into interracial and
transracial work. This offers support and provides a safe

space for trainees, supervisees and clients to explore their

experiences and cultural backgrounds.
Develop an interest in both the cultural history and early
experiences of racism that may influence a clients situation.
Be aware that when individuals struggle with addressing
Black issues, they are where they are and that this process
can be viewed as recognition trauma.
Be aware of the ancestral baggage and Black western
archetypes that may influence this process. There are
always powerful feelings attached to racism even when
individuals appear to cope with these hurtful experiences.
Address silences, denial and dissociative responses to
racism, so that individuals know you remain connected
to their specific emotional experience even when it gets
difficult. This requires therapists to be bold in reflecting on

Letter to the Editor

In the spring 2012 issue of The Psychotherapist, former UKCP
chair Professor Andrew Samuels interviewed screenwriter
Christopher Hampton. The interview focused on the newly
released A Dangerous Method, a film directed by David
Cronenberg about Jung, Freud and Spielrein. A still and
caption from the film were used which highlight an underlying
problem with Sabina Spielreins status among men, as
Madeleine Bcker observes in her letter
Let me start by saying that I very much enjoyed Andrew
Samuels interview with Christopher Hampton. It appeared
to me that Andrew was indeed acknowledging Spielreins
status in the psychoanalytic community when he said, When I
watched the film, I clocked a number of references to her as a
worker, as an analyst, as a doctor, as a writer. You were pushing
buttons there werent you? Surely you were?
If this were, indeed, one of the agendas of the play, film and
interview (quite apart from the obvious one), then I must
admit I find it rather perplexing if not perturbing that in
the text under the photo of Freud and Jung we read: The film
takes us to turn of the century Zurich and Vienna at the pivotal
moment when Jung, Freud and Sabina [sic!] come together
and split apart, influencing the birth of psychoanalysis and
changing the face of modern thought. How come, I wonder, it
is Jung and Freud, but Sabina? Is this not rather infantalising
and reducing her status, while preserving that of the men?

Join the discussion

If you are a member of UKCP, you can share your views on articles in
The Psychotherapist by logging on to our discussion forum: You will need your membership number,
your username (given on your UKCP certificate) and your password.
If you dont know your password, follow the forgotten password link
on the login screen for a reminder.


their own responses to racism in supervision.

Dont take the experience of racism for granted, as each
persons situation is uniquely linked to their personal
identity and developmental processes.
Processing racism means processing trauma, often
repetitive or vicarious trauma, and Black peoples lives are
impacted by this at varying levels.
Be willing to explore assimilative and internalised
behaviour and attitudes that may inhibit or normalise the
impact of racism. P

Jung C (1972). The archetypes and the collective unconscious. London:
Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Mckenzie-Mavinga I (2009). Black issues in the therapeutic process.
Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Tuckwell G (2002). Racial identity, White counsellors and therapists.
Buckingham, Philadelphia: Open University Press.
Vanoy-Adams M (1996). The multi-cultural imagination. London: Routledge.

During the interview itself, both men refer to Spielrein by

her surname, thus affording her equal status; however, is
there a little slip back to the old order when Andrew says,
Its clear in the movie that doctors arent supposed to have
sex with patients and his defensiveness about it with Freud
and the way he dealt with Frau Spielrein (Sabinas mother)
suggests that Jung knew that it wasnt ok at the time?
Perhaps we would have referred to Jungs father as CarlGustavs father or Freuds as Sigmunds and perhaps Andrew
was just avoiding the dreaded Fraulein? I really do not wish
to sound paranoid or like the thought police but, not long
after reading the interview, I attended an excellent lecture
at the Association of Jungian Analysts by Dr Gottfried Heuer
titled A dangerous method. A talk about the film by David
Cronenberg, Sigmund Freud/Carl Gustav Jung/Otto Gross/
Sabina Spielrein: The birth of intersubjectivity sexual abuse
in psychoanalysis. I was horrified and delighted to hear
that Gottfried had picked up on the widespread, belittling
use of Spielreins first name and that he traced it through
some of the core literature. Perhaps it is time for us to refer to
her as Dr Spielrein?
Given that the film shows vividly the intricacies of
emeshments (not only the sexual misconduct but how about
Mrs Jungs free associations being witnessed and analysed by
Spielrein?) in a time before we had formalised supervision.
Personally, I must admit that I know very little of Spielreins
work (and found Knightleys overacting pushing me away
rather than fostering compassion). I wonder whether we
would do well to make some repairs to Spielrein by having a
feature about her contribution in one of the future issues?
Madeleine Bcker
From Andrew Samuels: Madeleine Bcker has a point, and there
were other ways to manage the fact that both women had the
same surname. My apologies. She is also correct to assume that
I was interested in establishing that Jungs approach to therapy
with Spielrein valued her abilities as a professional worker in the
same field as himself.

ukcp news

A snapshot of the
2012 Research Conference
Members of the Research Faculty provide an overview of some of the
presentations and papers
Chris Evans
Chris Evans was the first keynote speaker of
the morning, and his presentation provided
a stimulating and engaging challenge
related to the conceptual metaphors of
hard and soft science. Chris told us that
hard science is concerned with rigorous,
replicable and predictable outcomes
that show discernible results and impact
the science of mathematics is a phallic
case in point. Soft science is more often
applied to the social sciences, which are
noted for their endless possibilities, their
moderating and mediating variables and
infinite incompleteness. He used the two
metaphors to illuminate the hard numbers
of psychotherapy clients and the soft
transmutable interactions of therapist and
client. He argued persuasively that the
diversity, super-complexity and uniqueness
of psychotherapy requires us to transcend
the quantitative versus qualitative debate,
weaving together the hard and soft
threads into hard evidence and reflexive,
experiential, embodied complexity. His
presentation brought together the tension
that exists between elements that are hard,
differentiated and complete and those
that are suffused with infinite possibility.
Terence Nice

Mick Cooper
Mick Coopers stimulating keynote
presentation discussed an evolving
qualitative research method that attempts
to articulate and explain multiple change
processes in therapy. Key ideas underlying
this work are that clients can be helped
in multiple ways and therefore therapies
hold the potential for multiple pathways
of change (although modalities theorise
change processes differently). Using a
causal network approach, his research seeks
to map out the complex relationships and
links between key independent variables,
ie therapist activities, client activities and
helpful effects. Most of this research has

The Psychotherapist

From left: Wendy Hollway, Mick Cooper, Peter Stratton, Angela Cotter, Chris Evans, Linda Finlay

involved in-depth interviews with clients

but therapists can also use the mapping
process. He clearly demonstrated that
research could establish which activities
have the potential to be of help to a
greater or lesser proportion of clients and
challenged us to put clients experiences
and understandings of the therapy process
at the heart of practice. Liz McDonnell

Wendy Hollway
This keynote presentation was organised
into four sub-themes: the clash between
paradigms (scientific constructionist);
the critique of epistemic objectivity
as impossible; alternative reflexivity;
and objectivity through subjectivity or
reflecting on emotion-based experience.
These themes raised a range of questions/
reflections on important issues, most with
wider implications for both clinicians
and researchers. For example, how do
researchers achieve objectivity, in the
sense of fairness, disinterestedness, based
on evidence and recognising reality. And
what about the psychological processes of
making sense of experience (thinking and
reflecting on emotional experience)?
The key reflections were further illustrated

with examples from one of Professor

Hollways studies that explored identity
change when women become mothers
for the first time. After a short introduction
to the project, she followed the theme of
reflection on feelings the shared feeling
that is so important in the process of
making meaning out of someones account
of their experience. She explained that
there is much to open up and question:
for example, how to research this kind of
changing experience, and ways to apply a
different epistemology to a basic research
process. If researchers can only know
something by knowing how we feel about
it, we must protect the vitality (based on not
cutting off the feeling) at every stage; that
is one of the challenges in the coming years.
The presentation and the more informal
question and answer session stimulated
many multifaceted conversations among
participants. Sheila Butler

Judith Ackroyd
Judith Ackroyd brought a challenging
dimension to the conference, drawing on
the insights of drama research in different
settings. This raised important issues for
embodied reflexive research. Can research


ukcp news
Paper presentations, session B

interviews somehow be experienced or

noted to capture the experience beyond
the text? The playwright Pinter is famous for
his pauses. Stories are held in what is unsaid
in the pause there is pain, hope and the
dream. How do data analysis and research
dissemination allow for the fact that 65
per cent of communication is through
non-verbal means? Ethnodramatists, for
example, perform research results to enable
the audience to engage fully. The key points
were enhanced and reinforced by her
engaging use of performance.
Angela Cotter

Linda Finlay
Linda Finlay gave a moving keynote,
demonstrating a relational-centred
approach to research, illustrated by her
own experience of supervising research
with women about traumatic abortion.
She drew out the parallel process in
research supervision and the research
process, similar to clinical supervision. The
womens stories are hard to hear and tell,
with an element of dissociation possible
in researcher and supervisor due to the
harrowing subject. The importance of
paying close attention is tantamount,
alongside empathy and compassion.
With a plea to move from talk of bias
to a celebration of subjectivity and
intersubjectivity, she emphasised the
importance of reflexivity in the work of the
supervisor, as well as the researcher, and of
setting research in its individual, relational
and social-historical context. Angela Cotter

Paper presentations, session D

Three very different papers were presented
in morning session D. The unifying feature
was the importance of reflexivity and the
need to be both present in and adapt to
our psychotherapeutic interventions in
the light of the dynamic generated by the
therapeutic relationship(s).
Mary Glover took this one stage further
back by giving a personal account of how
interpersonal dynamics influenced and
changed her research methodology and
subsequent studies. By engaging creatively
with adolescents, Mary adapted her
research protocol in the light of their input.
Elizabeth Mason presented findings
from semi-structured interviews
with psychotherapists who were also
practitioners of energy psychology. This
work addressed the important issues of
embodiment and change and the need


How do we listen to, understand and

reproduce research participants accounts
of their lives?
Tess Keeble used a literary poetic form
to structure her account of Jamess
experiences of living with multiple sclerosis.
Freed from traditional research reporting
frameworks, she gave a different type of life
and meaning to his experiences that made
sense to him and to the people around him.

Judith Ackroyd

for more complex systemic models to

understand how people experience distress
and change. Elya Steinberg encouraged us
to reflect on how embodied change in both
clients and therapist can act as markers
that indicate transformative turning points.
Her approach focused on the effects of
psychotherapeutic approaches on our
external senses, especially sight and
hearing, introducing us to a very tangible
example of embodiment. Andrew Wadge

Paper presentations, session E

The papers in this session focused on
different ways of using, negotiating
and understanding the self in research.
Using the personal and being alive to the
relational allowed each researcher to get a
more nuanced understanding of different
experiences and phenomena.
Patricia Bonnici considered the socio-cultural
dimensions of choosing to be child-free in
relation to her own experience of therapy,
and also reflected on her movements
between insider and outsider in her research
interviews with child-free women. In
researching social workers understandings
and experiences of reflective practice,
Gillian Ruch drew our attention to
unanticipated psycho-social reciprocity in
the research process and how a researcher
might offer possibilities for containment,
guidance and practical help thus
increasing reciprocity within the research
Julie Bavridges research found that the
psychotherapy training journey was
significantly shaped by the training
organisation and how well the training
organisation could hold trainees during a
time of heightened self-development.
Liz McDonnell

The importance and power of listening in

research was highlighted in Jan Mojsas
presentation, in which the philosophical
aspects of listening, ie being able to
take leave of oneself and make room for
the other (listening as a state of being
rather than skilfulness), were explored.
The inherent uncertainties in any
communication were noted and innovative
ways of presenting participants experiences
were highlighted.
The importance of understanding and
accounting for the pre-reflective lived
experience of both researchers and
research participants was the focus of Jamie
McNultys paper. Liz McDonnell

Paper presentations, session D

The three afternoon presentations in this
session were stimulating and richly diverse.
The principal topics covered were: the
essential meaning and function of silence
in the therapeutic encounter (Laverne
Faith Hewett); Gendlins innovative model
of knowledge as implicit in our lived
experience and felt sense of self in relation
to our environment (Anna Magee); and
the use of mental imagery to enhance
reflexivity and the research process (Val
Thomas). The three presentations embodied
a spirit of creativity and radical thinking as
part of the research process, encouraging
us to examine the essence of silence, to
think at the edge and to attend to our own
conceptual metaphors and mental imagery.
The research discourses captured the
freshness, immediacy and richness of being
research active and how this can usefully
be applied to the research process and
clinical practice. Such contributions are vital
arteries in the lifeblood of psychotherapy
research. Terence Nice P
A programme and presentations from the day
are available to download online at

ukcp news

Assured voluntary regulation:

UKCP Vice Chair Tom Warnecke puts some questions to the Council for
Regulatory Healthcare Excellence chief executive Harry Cayton on what the
scheme entails
Tom Warnecke: As you can imagine,
there is considerable interest in the
Council of Healthcare Regulatory
Excellence (CHRE*) among our members
and in the concept of assured voluntary
regulation. Since we cannot all turn
up at your offices, we have collected
questions, which I will ask on their
Harry Cayton: Its very reassuring to hear
that people are interested in what we do.
TW: Youve written about right-touch
regulation. What do you mean by that?
HC: Right-touch regulation means
getting the balance right between the
ability of the professional to manage

their own work and conduct and the

need for regulation to set standards and
ensure that people adhere to them. Were
interested in the idea of less regulation
focused on the things that really matter,
in quantifying risk and making sure
that regulation is proportionate. I have
a slightly tongue-in-cheek first law of
right-touch regulation, that is you should
only use the regulatory force necessary
to achieve the desired effect. My simple
analogy is of a set of scales and weighing
something for cooking. You put the
weight on one side, it goes down and
you start pouring flour in the dish. And
then, suddenly, the scales tip; at that
point youve got right-touch. If you go

on pouring, nothing further happens.

The scales are down. More regulatory
force than you need is a waste of effort.
Whats needed is just the right amount of
regulation to achieve the desired effect or
outcome. And the primary outcome in all
health and care is the safety and wellbeing
of and patients and service users. Thats
what regulation exists to ensure.
TW: How do you see the difference
between right-touch and light-touch?
HC: There is a distinct difference. Light
touch is not enough, as weve seen in
sectors like banking and finance. But weve
also seen over- heavy regulation. To go
directly to the issue of psychotherapy, my

Harry Cayton (left) and Tom Warnecke

*CHRE will be changing its name to the Professional Standards Authority from 1 December.

The Psychotherapist


ukcp news
It gives the public the
assurance that if they go
to a practitioner on an
accredited register, they
can be confident of the
quality of care theyre
going to get
view is that the model were developing
of assured voluntary registers is more
of a right touch for psychotherapy
and counselling than the full statutory
regulation model, which is a rather
rigid and predetermined way of getting
professions to conform. One of the
strengths of the voluntary register scheme
were developing is that it places a great
deal of responsibility with the professional
bodies themselves. There is less weight on
the external setting of rules and standards.
TW: The idea of accrediting existing
registers is very different from that of
statutory regulation, where individuals
are registered. How will the authoritys
scheme benefit our members who are
ordinary practising professionals?
HC: The first thing to say is that it is a
collaborative scheme, which we have
planned very successfully over the past
18 months with some 40 organisations.
It places responsibility for standards,
for determining what is and isnt
appropriate conduct, very clearly with
the occupational register itself. Statutory
regulation defines the standards for you,
whereas in the voluntary register model
you define the standards and we accredit
the organisational approach to your own
profession and membership. For the
first time, there will be a statutory body
accrediting the quality of what you do.
It gives the public the assurance that if
they go to a practitioner on an accredited
register, they can be confident of the
quality of care theyre going to get. Most
complaints about private practitioners
we hear about are to do with cost of
treatments and whether people got what
they thought they were paying for. There
are also issues around inappropriate
behaviours and sexual boundaries, which
is clearly a particular risk in your field for
reasons to do with the kind of clients you
have and the kind of techniques you use.
I see this scheme as a form of consumer


protection because many of the people

wholl be using people on voluntary
registers will be clients paying for
themselves and there are no managerial
systems in private practice.
And we believe it will increase the public
credibility of psychotherapists.
TW: There are practising therapists
who arent on any voluntary register.
Before we go on to talk about consumer
protection what are the incentives for
people who are not currently on any
voluntary register to join one?
HC: We hope that over time the public,
or GPs recommending psychotherapy to
patients, will increasingly choose people
who are on accredited registers. Youll get
a certain amount of leverage in terms of
making it harder for people to maintain
why theyre not on an accredited register
and more likely that clients will choose
practitioners who are.
TW: Some statutory regulation schemes
in Europe are quite restrictive. They are
more about protecting the market share
and influence of particular professional
groups than about public protection.
The CHRE website describes how the
scheme works with and for patients and
the public. Can you tell us more how
this would apply to psychotherapy and
HC: Some of this will develop because it
is a collaboration. We have an extensive
patientpublic engagement network,
with over 260 members across the UK.
It is primarily an electronic network but
we also hold meetings in Scotland, Wales,
Northern Ireland and England on particular
issues and, we have an e-newsletter. We
will be talking to member organisations
like yours about whether you are
collecting your clients views of services,
whether you are using that information
to improve the quality of what you do,
whether you are collecting information
about complaints and whether that is
feeding into policy and practice. We will
start to get complaints. People will say to
us we went to someone on one of your
accredited registers and they werent
as good as we expected. Thats bound
to happen, so well have to engage with
register holders about complaints and
checking whether they manage those
properly. That makes it sounds negative
but I dont think its entirely negative.

Engaging with service users is important

and can improve the quality of services. We
want to help registers do that but well also
be doing this ourselves independently.
TW: Psychotherapy and counselling
encompass a wide range of different
philosophies of practice. How will your
scheme include that breadth?
HC: I think thats a strength of the
scheme. Were not setting standards for
practitioners, so there doesnt have to be a
single standard and people can be flexible
in the way they interpret their philosophy
and style of working. Clearly there are
certain standards around honesty with
peoples money but there might be
considerable variation in standards
of professional competence or the
environments in which people work, those
kind of things. Well be looking to you as
the register holder to demonstrate to us
that you have the appropriate framework
for your profession.
TW: So you would expect us to have
variations in practice? For example
psychoanalysis would be different from
body psychotherapy?
HC: Yes. Youre the experts. We just want
to be sure, so would probably say, how do
you measure those standards and make
sure people adhere to them?
TW: We have one set of standards
but would bring in somebody from
particular modality to assist with
modality-specific standards.
HC: That would be entirely appropriate.
Standard is not about standardisation.
TW: Thats a welcome distinction!
My next question is from a consumers
perspective. Statutory regulation
would have created standards of
education and training, which would
have defined terms such as counselling
and psychotherapy in terms of the
qualifications behind it. Will your
scheme require voluntary registers

Well be looking to you

as the register holder to
demonstrate to us that
you have the appropriate
framework for your

ukcp news
to clarify such terms on their register
in some transparent framework, for
example NVQs?
HC: This is a really interesting area and
its one weve struggled with. For any
occupational group, you clearly have to
have an entry level that is good enough.
Its important to remember that, in
statutory regulation, people who enter
the register are only those who are
good enough to pass those entry level
requirements. They arent necessarily the
top 10 per cent but they pass the entry
standard. How do you determine whos
good enough to be practising in your
field? There will be considerable variation,
so weve decided were not going to
define the level of qualification for any
particular occupation. We are going to
ask the experts to give us their definition
and method of quality assuring the level
of entry to their register. If somebody
said we think NVQ is an appropriate level
for this part of our list and graduate is an
appropriate level for that part, wed say, as
long as you have clear reasons, thats up to
you, youre the experts.
TW: Consumers would expect
HC: We would expect absolute
transparency for the consumer.
TW: Psychotherapy qualifications
are generally at masters level, but
there is quite a range of counselling
qualifications, from two-year courses to
masters degrees.
HC: This is quite normal in other
occupational groups. We would hope in
time that qualifications would be visible to
the public on the register. We are trying to
build public confidence and a lot of that
comes through greater transparency.
TW: Youd have a problem if two or more
organisations claimed or used a similar
title but used it very differently.
HC: These things will come about over
time. We will have to arbitrate and reach
agreements. One of the things weve
already agreed is that if someone was on
your register and you removed them for
inappropriate behaviour towards clients,
they couldnt leave your register and join
BACP. There has to be mutual recognition.
TW: Quite commonly, youll have
practitioners on more than one register,
and some of those will be statutorily
regulated . Medical psychotherapists

The Psychotherapist

Standard is not about standardisation

are on the GMC and often also on our

register. Or youll have people who are
on the BACP and UKCP registers, so
there would need to be some kind of
HC: Some of this well have to work out
the cases will be individual but over
time rules will be set in the way we work
TW: Medical psychotherapists have just
set up a UKCP college as a joint project
with the Royal College Faculty. If there
was a complaint to us, we might look to
the GMC to take a lead.
HC: And probably we would too. And if the
GMC didnt do its job properly, we could
climb over the fence and talk to the GMC
about it because we oversee them as well.
TW: Regulation affects employment,
especially in the NHS and third sector.
Some of our members working in the
NHS are concerned that they will be
at a disadvantage to those registered
through HPC. What steps will CHRE take
to ensure this scheme is recognised?
HC: First of all, although its voluntary to
join, this is a statutory scheme. The NHS
will be strongly encouraged to use only
professionals on a register accredited by
us, including through the Any Qualified
Provider scheme. This would give your
practitioners equal status to statutorily
registered people. Were also looking at
other mechanisms such as writing to chief
executives, talking to employers giving

advice to those seeking to fill certain posts

and working with all accredited registers
to raise the profile of the scheme.
TW: The concern is that there may be
employer preference for people on the
HPC register.
HC: I hope that wont happen and Im
not sure why it should if we can make
this scheme credible. Membership of an
accredited voluntary register demonstrates
a personal choice to commit to quality,
which is different to being registered by a
statutory register.
TW: But lets assume a case where an
employer advertises a post and specifies
HPC registration. Would you take action
on that?
HC: It would depend on the post. There are,
possibly, areas of counselling where there
are a number of different approaches. An
employer would have to demonstrate why
a particular type of counselling was what
they wanted
TW: I get letters at UKCP about job
adverts requiring the applicant to
be BPC registered, for example. We
have challenged employers on such
HC: Wed be ready to write to people
in these circumstances, saying that, if
youre looking for quality, you should
specify that the applicant is a member
of the Professional Standards Authorityaccredited Register, not one specific group.


ukcp news
Because, actually, were levelling out the
differences between those two groups and
we would want to make that case.

that you have followed your complaints

procedure. If you havent, we may instruct
you to deal with the matter.

TW: I want to side-step into Europe.

The European Commission created the
Professional Qualifications Directive
2005/36 to facilitate unrestricted
professional movement in Europe.
Will voluntary registration under
your scheme be recognised by the EC
Directives general system?
HC: I dont know is the answer. We
have initiated some contacts but they
would clearly wish to see the scheme
up and running before they consider it.
Interestingly, in our international work, I
hear that some people are beginning to
see that maybe statutory regulation is too
heavy touch for some occupations and
that this model that were developing here
which is really innovative, nobodys quite
done this before could be a better model
in other countries as well.

The important thing will be for the

accredited registers to make sure that they
manage their complaints appropriately
and efficiently and we will be auditing
that on an annual basis. That will be quite
a significant test for us an accredited
register dealing with complaints properly.

TW: I think its going to be a growing

issue. Professional migration is on the
increase and the EC has been taking a
harder line with governments that have
restrictive regulation policies.
HC: Well, maybe we could start accrediting
internationally we do international
TW: Im glad to hear youve got Europe
on your radar.
HC: Id have to look at our legislation.
Im not sure it specifies that we can only
accredit UK organisations.
TW: Could you outline how the CHRE
scheme will benefit those seeking
therapy and those who wish to make a
HC: That is probably the two things it does
best. It helps people seeking therapy by
giving them a list of therapists they can
have confidence in. In terms of complaints,
one of the things that gives people
confidence is knowing there is a credible,
straightforward complaints system. A
normal complaints system goes: you
complain to your practitioner; if youre not
satisfied with the response, you complain
to the voluntary register; the register, with
its own internal complaints mechanism,
instructs the therapist to repay money, or
apologise, or explain more clearly what
they were doing and why. If people are
not satisfied, they can complain to us. We
will not hear the complaint but will check


TW: One last question. Are there plans

to protect the titles of psychotherapist
and psychotherapeutic counsellor to
stop unregistered people using them?
HC: We cant do that. Only statutory
regulation can protect titles. But I think the
protected title is slightly over-valued. We
see people coming off the chiropractors
register and calling themselves
manipulative therapists. Theres a whole
set of very similar subtitles that people
use. The accredited registers scheme will
explain to the public that you shouldnt
go to someone using one of those titles
who isnt on an accredited voluntary
register. Thats not exactly the same level
of protection but it is additional assurance
and, just as we wouldnt dream of going to
a gas-fitter who wasnt properly registered,
over time people will learn that they

We will not hear

the complaint but will
check that you have
followed your complaints
should always use someone who is on an
accredited register.
TW: What we have seen from restrictive
regulatory regimes with protected
titles, for example in Germany or in
France, is that there are loopholes
in the legislation. It is legal to offer
psychotherapy as long as you do not call
yourself a psychotherapist.
HC: These things are difficult but I dont
think protected titles are in themselves
a solution. Its also true that its very
difficult to stop people even in a statutory
profession. I set myself up as an osteopath
and I practise this stuff, so the osteopaths
write to me and say, desist. If I ignore it,
they have to call the police. And, to be
honest, the police are not very
interested in prosecuting. They have
other things to do.
TW: Thank you for your time. P

ICP UKCP cross-border

registration agreement
UKCP and the Irish Council for Psychotherapy have arranged to provide UKCP
members and ICP registrants with the option to get listed on both national registers.
The two national accrediting organisations have similar standards of education
and training and comparable quality assurance standards. Under the agreement,
all aspects of quality assurance such as complaints or CPD requirements will be
managed in the practitioners country of residence and are the sole responsibility
of the national accrediting organisation in the country of residence.
Interested UKCP members can apply to be listed on the ICP register for an annual
fee of 50. Application forms are available to download on our website at
Please be aware that you will need to reapply on an annual basis if you decide to
take advantage of this scheme.
This agreement aims to support UKCP members and ICP registrants in Northern
Ireland and in the Irish Republic who, for example, may want to apply for
positions in the neighbouring country. The cross-border registration issue was
initially raised at a UKCP regional forum meeting in Belfast and found support
from the governing boards of both organisations. This is the first such agreement
between two psychotherapy national accrediting organisations in Europe. It is a
testimony of the good relations between UKCP and ICP and may lead the way to
closer co-operation in other areas of common interest.
If you have any queries about the scheme, please contact the UKCP Registrar
Alan McConnon at
Tom Warnecke
Vice chair and chair of the International Committee

ukcp news

Putting the pieces together

Marcus Cato, Interim Development Manager, explains
what to expect from the new UKCP complaints process

onduct and Complaints Process

(C&CP) is the name for our new
central complaints process and a
tremendous amount of progress has
been made on several fronts to move
this initiative forward.

Members of the regulations and

compliance working group have worked
diligently over the past three months to
prepare the process, which was agreed
by the Ethics Committee and accepted
in principle by the Board of Trustees
on 19 July. By the time you read this, a
consultation with all members will have
taken place. The results will be reviewed by
the Ethics Committee, which will decide on
any changes to be made and submit a final
proposal to the Board of Trustees.
The organisational members who have
signed up so far include:
Association for Family Therapy and
Systemic Practice
National College of Hypnosis and
Sherwood Psychotherapy Training
Psychosynthesis and Education Trust
London School of Biodynamic
Chiron Association for Body

What you need to know about our


Increase of 50 for each individual

member from October 2013
Increase of 50 for direct members from
January 2013
No further increase for organisational
members for the next three years at least

Emphasis on resolution
The new C&CP shifts the focus from
determining how complaints can be managed
to facilitating opportunities for both parties to
settle their differences in an informal way.

The Psychotherapist

and implementation of the logistics

surrounding the management of
committees, panels and hearings
Captures feedback about how we are
managing complaints.

Produces regular complaints monitoring,
performance and statistical reports that
currently are compiled manually.

Client and therapist support

Fast forward to January 2013

The procedure is more supportive and

responsive and less adversarial than the
present system.

Managing complaints effectively requires

having an efficient system and people who
are trained and can respond quickly. The
aim is to have the new case management
system implemented in the last quarter
of 2012 and the relevant trained staff and
panel members ready to go on 1 January
2013. Cases received after 31 December will
be processed under the new system.

All those involved will undertake training
and induction programmes that will enable
them to undertake their roles objectively
and ensure that proportionality is achieved.
Resolution will be at the forefront of their
dealings with clients and therapists.

Public representation
There will be more lay involvement in
decision making. Lay members will work
alongside panel members from relevant
colleges pertinent to each individual case.

We are aligning internal resources to support
C&CP and strengthen service standards to
ensure that clients, therapists, committee and
panel members receive timely responses.

Increased transparency and

A case management system will be put
in place, enabling recording, accessing,
planning, facilitating and communicating
from a central database of complaints
records. This will improve standards and the
responsiveness, monitoring, auditing and
the transparency of the process. It will allow
staff to access the central database and give
secure web access only to panel members
and others involved in specific cases to
track the progress of their case.
The case management system will allow
clients to determine the status of their own
case online via iPad or computer.

The words of our strapline seem most

appropriate at this point as we strive to put
our new complaints procedure in place:
putting pieces together with knowledge
compassion and understanding. P
Previous articles in The Psychotherapist have
explained the rationale for having a central
complaints process and outlined how the
new procedure will improve our service to
members (see issues 50 and 51).

Seniors and
disability network
A small support group was started a
year ago under the aegis of the Diversity
Equality and Social Responsibility
Committee, which has been running
since then and welcomes new members.
We use the telephone conferencing
facility provided by UKCP to meet on the
phone once a month and adjust the time
of the meeting according to the needs
and preferences of members.
We aim to provide positive and
constructive support for the challenges
which we tend to face in older age or
with disability.

We dont assume that all older

psychotherapists are disabled or that
all disabled people are older, but for
some people these issues are combined.
It seemed more practical to explore
dealing with the two sets of issues in one
meeting it is always possible to revise
this according to the needs of members.

If youre interested in joining us, please

contact Marion Brion via the UKCP office by

Less labour-intensive than the current

system, the new process will have a
hosted, stand-alone, computer-based case
management system that:
Ensures confidentiality while providing
key points for regular audit, risk
assessment and review
Facilitates the circulation of
documents, recording of decisions


ukcp news

Transpersonal Special Interest

Group: second meeting, 20 May 2012
Encouraged by the support of over 200 members, the second meeting of the
Transpersonal Special Interest Group took place in May. Janet Love looks forward
to the next event on 11 November

t the open forum in March, I

gave a presentation on the
proposed inner and outer evolution
of the Transpersonal Special Interest
Group. To make our group accessible
to all, I used an abbreviated version
of Maslows 1968 definition of the
transpersonal: beyond individuality
into something which is more inclusive
than the individual. Our proposed way
forward for inner evolution would
therefore be to be more inclusive
in our individual organisation of
UKCP, reaching out to the 80 plus
member organisations, including
psychotherapy approaches not overtly
named transpersonal.

Exchanging travellers
tales was the most
appreciated aspect of
the day

Our groups proposed path for outer

evolution is based on our recognition of

between transpersonal psychology and

psychotherapys place in the larger body

of the healing professions. This led us to
invite Professor Les Lancaster, Chair of the
British Psychological Society and Professor
of Transpersonal Psychology, to address
our meeting in May. To represent our own
faction of transpersonal psychotherapy, we
invited veteran and author, Dr John Rowan.
Our theme for the day was What are the
relationships, differences and tensions
transpersonal psychotherapy?

UKCP Transpersonal special

interest group meeting
Sunday 11 November 2012 11.30am 4pm Remembrance Sunday
The Ballroom, Centre for Counselling and Psychotherapy Education,
2 Warwick Crescent, London W2 6NE

Different approaches to transpersonal psychotherapy


Tom Warnecke, UKCP Vice Chair, Member and Information Services

Key Speakers: Dr Heward Wilkinson, HIPC Chair, Honorary Fellow of UKCP

Remembrance, Creativity and the Transpersonal

Chris Robertson, BSc, MPhil, Co-founder of Re-Vision,

UKCP Organisational Member
Flesh of the Soul

Followed by discussion groups and open forum.

This event is free and participants will receive a UKCP Certificate for Continuing
Professional Development.
To book your place, visit:


Away from the margins

Our Chair, Tom Warnecke, opened the day,
eloquently expressing encouragement
for moving the transpersonal away
from the margins into the domains of a
mainstream topic. Rupert Tower, member
of our steering group, the protagonist in
organising the meeting and occupying
that rare position as transpersonal
psychologist and psychotherapist, gave
the introduction. His metaphor for our
meeting was that of a bridge: a bridge
that presupposes the presence of another,
a pathway, and a meeting place. It was
the perfect analogy for us to embrace
the other and to listen to a transpersonal
approach to psychology. Professor
Lancaster was an impassioned speaker
and a firm advocate of the transpersonal
being regarded as an academic discipline.
His knowledge was profound with
personal references to his own interest in
Jewish mysticism and the Zohar. He also
addressed beguiling questions such as
what is the root of thought?

The root of thought

Dr John Rowan exuded a kind and subtle
presence and placed the transpersonal
in a historical/theoretical context. He
drew on the work of Ken Wilber and
gave an overview of other transpersonal
movements across the globe. He touched
on the root of thought by encouraging us
to strip down our beliefs and embrace the
idea of nothing as a starting point.
In the afternoon we reassembled in small
groups so that all the participants could
express what the transpersonal meant
to them. One participant said that, for
them, the transpersonal meant a whole
way of being rather than just a modality
of psychotherapeutic practice. He went
on to share his own spiritual path: being
aware of providing the right conditions

ukcp news
Embrace the idea of
nothing as a starting
for the seed of our being (holding the
meaning and purpose of our life) to
germinate, and in so doing being able
to grow into becoming the plant of our
being. I include this vignette because
exchanging travellers tales seems to
have been the most appreciated aspect
of the day.

A work in progress
We then moved on to the open forum.
Under discussion was how our group
might be recognised as a UKCP faculty .
This is a work in progress and we will be
writing to all member organisations to

invite participation. The way we currently

envisage the group working is for different
member organisations to host events with
revolving responsibilities.
It is important not to wallow in the British
practice of self-congratulation. Some of
the feedback was that the day had low
energy and that the main topic was not
addressed adequately. We aim to address
this in the next meeting on Sunday 11

The Egyptian Goose

I would not be true to my own experience
of the meeting without including the
following anecdote. During the late part
of the morning, directly in my line of sight
outside the window, I was mesmerised
by the sight of a most amazing bird,
which I could not identify. It was perched

The Egyptian Goose: a

symbol of incarnation of
the Divine
majestically on one leg on the very top of
a pollarded linden tree. Sitting next to me
was Paul Maiteny, a steering group member
and an anthropologist and ecologist. He
shared my experience and was able to
name this rare bird an Egyptian Goose.
Later he forwarded me this: The Egyptian
Goose symbolises Geb, God of the Earth, In the
Earth and Under the Earth, first ruler of Egypt
and husband of Nut (Goddess of the Sky). A
symbol of incarnation of the Divine. I share its
presence with you all. P
For more information on the group, contact

The Psychotherapy Club

Martin Pollecoff introduces innovative new social networks around the country for
UKCP members
The Psychotherapy Club is getting started. Its a grassroots movement to create opportunities for psychotherapists and
psychotherapists in training (students) to get together alongside other mental health specialists to network, have fun, drink, eat,
learn, socialise, supervise, create, flirt, whatever...
All charges are to cover food and drink. This is run by the UKCP but guests do not have to be UKCP members to attend.
We are just starting out and these are our first events. If you want to run an event or you want to find out more please call me
on 07802 338 773 or email
For a full listing of events in your area go to
Martin Pollecoff
UKCP trustee representing individual members

10 November 2012 Buckinghamshire

17 November 2012 - Norfolk

Queens Head, 20 Church Street Chesham, Old Chesham,

George Hotel and Pub, Swaffham Road, Dereham, NR19 2AZ

Buckinghamshire HP5 1JD

From midday
Katy Baldock

Trish Turner and Liz Jenkins
Trish and Liz invite you to the George Hotel and Pub for the

Katy invites you to join her at midday. The food is good, its a

inaugural meeting of the Norfolk Psychotherapy Club. A

great pub and you get to meet, mingle and talk shop.

conservatory has been reserved for the group.

Whats not to like?

Please contact Katy:
07808 721439
or if you are really shy - just turn up on the day.

The Psychotherapist

Just turn up or contact Trish Turner:
or Liz Jenkins:


ukcp members

Reparative therapy, psychotherapy and

Pilkington where do we go from here?
We need to expand our knowledge and
understanding of our gay and lesbian clients, asserts
Di Hodgson, and avoid the preconceptions and
misconceptions generated by the media

Sexual orientation and deviant


eparative therapy has been a hot

topic in the press this year, much
of the attention connected with the
well-publicised Pilkington case. The
case has caused considerable debate
in the media, legal and psychotherapy
professions. At UKCP, weve noticed
increasing numbers of questions,
concerns and misunderstandings
about the meaning of our guidelines
published last year.

of their therapy. For others, their orientation

remains fluid. Neither the exploration, nor
any resultant change, suggests unethical
practice. The ethical question is concerned
with the therapists ability to avoid implying
a preference and, possibly through their lack
of awareness, colluding with societal or the
clients internalised homophobia, or colluding
with the notion that having a religious belief
and being gay or lesbian are necessarily

A safe space

A neutral stance

What should we do when clients want to

discuss their sexual orientation? The question
has many levels and layers, which cannot
be covered in detail in a piece of this size.
But perhaps we need to start with some of
the fundamentals for psychotherapy. We
provide a safe space for exploration with no
investment in the outcome. So we cannot
undertake anything which could be described
as reparative (there is nothing that needs
repairing) or conversion or SOCE (sexual
orientation change efforts). What we can
do is extend that safe space to those who
are ambivalent, distressed, afraid, uncertain
or conflicted by their sexual orientation
positions which are understandable give
that this group is frequently pathologised,
discriminated against and on the receiving
end of prejudice, abuse and harassment.
Many of you will recall the lepers amongst us
references in the media earlier this year.

So we go back to first principles and take a

neutral stance. One might argue that this
neutral stance is only achieved and achievable
through mindful awareness rather than
a stance of benign non-judgmentalism.
Easier said than done. This requires us to be
aware of the cultural context and willing to
discuss the context in which these feelings
are experienced at a societal, relational and
individual level.

For those who have thought, or think,

that the guidelines mean we cannot work
with someone who has questions about
or is conflicted by their sexual orientation
for religious or other reasons I can say
they dont. For many people, their sexual
orientation is not fixed. Some people do
change their sexual orientation in the course
of their lives and sometimes in the course

More contentious is the idea that some

therapists, while not offering reparative
therapy, are nonetheless causing harm to their
gay and lesbian clients. Rather than blatant
prejudice, more likely is failure by the therapist
to understand the impact of heterosexism,
which then manifests in unconscious bias. This
could include the therapist inappropriately
thinking that depression or anxiety is caused


by their clients sexual orientation, so they

are consciously or unconsciously looking for
reasons why someone is gay or lesbian. In
doing so, they inadvertently perpetuate the
idea that heterosexuality is the normal default
position and homosexuality is pathological.

Blatant prejudice in the therapy room is

possible, though unlikely. An optimistic view
would suggest that those therapists who,
because of their own beliefs, do not feel
comfortable working with someone on an
exploration of their sexual orientation would
refer on, in the same way that they would for
anything else that they deem outside their
competence. This is an acceptable and ethical
thing to do, and supervisors have a key role.

Another way in which this happens is the

perpetual confusion caused by the media,
the general public and, dare I say it, some
psychotherapists in making connections
between sexual orientation and what might
be described as deviant or unacceptable
sexual behaviours. We recently had a question
about whether our guidelines on reparative
therapy applied to paedophilia. Often this
tendency flows from failing to look differently
at sexual orientation rather than expressions
of sexuality and from talking about sexual
orientation in the same breath as abuse,
incest, paedophilia, etc. These inappropriate
connections feed the idea that homosexuality
is personally or socially damaging and
therefore can/should be treated/repaired,
which adds fuel to the argument in support of
reparative therapy.
Of course we can, and should, continue
to help clients who want to explore their
sexual orientation. But we do so with
awareness, humility and knowledge. Rather
than believing that being gay or lesbian
is indicative of trauma, abuse, attachment
issues or arrests in development, our task is to
expand our knowledge and understanding of
the prejudices felt by this group. P
Dr Di Hodgson
Chair of the Diversity, Equalities and Social
Responsibility Committee
for information on UKCPs campaign against
reparative therapy
Download UKCPs Guidance on the practice
of psychological therapies that pathologise
and/or seek to eliminate or reduce same
sex attraction at:

ukcp members

Raising your profile

Over the coming months, we will be
making some changes to the UKCP
website to make it more accessible to
the general public. This will include
improvements to the Find a Therapist
function. Our aim is to make it as easy
as possible for people to find and get
in touch with therapists, which will
ultimately increase the number of
enquiries you receive .
To take advantages of these changes it is

important to
make sure
that your
profile on
the website
is informative
and up to date.
We have produced
a guide to give you some
ideas and hints on how to do this
and what to include. If you have amended
your profile before, this is the ideal time

to review, update and

improve it. If you
have never tried
to change
your profile,
it is a simple
process; the
instructions to the
guide will help you
through it. P
To download a copy of the guide,
please visit our website

Referral services and email scams affecting members

We have been made aware of various

Referral services

scams taking place specifically targeting

our members, who are being contacted
using the details on our Find a Therapist
directory.These scams are usually
performed through cold calling or by

We have also been made aware of a referral

service that is contacting members.

Email scams
Emails are currently circulating from an
individual in the Netherlands asking to come
to the UK for therapy. The individual states
that they wish to pay an advance fee. The fee
arrives in the form of a bank draft but for a
larger amount than requested. The individual
apologises for the mistake and requests that
the recipient send the excess amount to a
travel agent who is arranging the individuals
travel to the UK. The bank draft is a forgery.
One member has already been affected by this
scam.We therefore urge members to be vigilant
about such emails and to exercise judgment
when responding to anything such as the above.

An individual on behalf of the company is

cold calling members and offering them a
service that will help them gain more GP
referrals. This service is provided for a fee.
We would advise our members to be aware
of such services and not to commit to
anything that they have not thoroughly
considered. Its advisable to research any
company contacting you about a referral
service. You shouldnt agree to anything over
the telephone unless you are absolutely sure
about the legitimacy of the service and happy
with the person youre dealing with and
what you are being offered. Insist on seeing
written details and a copy of the companys
full terms and conditions before registering.
By law, callers should identify themselves
and the company they are calling from.

Professional indemnity insurance

We have negotiated special rates on professional indemnity insurance for UKCP
members with two leading insurance companies.
Balens Specialist Insurance Brokers and Towergate Insurance are offering our members
special rates on professional indemnity insurance schemes for our members based on the
quality of our register and regulation systems. Both policies meet the requirements of our
Ethical Principles and Code of Professional Conduct.
This is a member service to support your professional practice and help you manage the costs
of your practice. We dont receive commission from either of these insurance companies.
For more information, please visit our website
We cant recommend which insurer you might choose. Please contact the individual
insurance company if you would like to discuss your insurance needs in detail. The special
rates are for UKCP full clinical and non-clinical members only your specially negotiated
rate will increase if you cease to be a UKCP member.

The Psychotherapist

Always ask for the persons name, the name

of their company and department, and
their contact number. If the person you are
speaking to cannot, or will not, provide these
details, or if they become abusive, end the
call immediately. Be particularly wary if the
caller transfers you to someone else during
the call. You may be able to request a copy of
the recording of the phone call if it is claimed
that you or one of your employees placed a
definite order during a phone call.

What can I do?

If you do not wish to receive unsolicited
sales and marketing calls, you should
register with the Telephone Preference
Service (TPS), which operates a central
opt out register covering everybody from
individuals to companies. It is a legal
requirement that companies do not make
cold calls to numbers registered on the TPS.
This service is free of charge. For further
information visit the TPS website.
If you feel that the organisation is acting
fraudulently, you may wish to contact
Action Fraud, the UKs national fraud
reporting centre and the place to report
scams or get advice if youre not sure what
to do ( If you have
paid for a service, you could also contact
your local trading standards office, which
can investigate the matter.
UKCP is limited in what we can do directly
because, ultimately, it is the individuals
decision where they choose to advertise
their services. If they choose to advertise
with an organisation, it becomes a civil
agreement. We are therefore trying to alert
our members to be careful about what they
sign up to. P


ukcp members

Book reviews
What will you do with
my story?
Elizabeth Meakins
ISBN 9781855757929
Published by UKCP/
[Freud] is not seeking deep dark secrets.
The opposite is true. He asks for a narrative
from the ordinary.1
Elizabeth Meakins has achieved something
relatively rare in psychoanalytic writing.
She talks to her reader, in a vernacular of
subtlety and presence, about an analytical
psychotherapy of ordinary lives in which
she and her patients share their suffering
and the struggle to weave meaning out
of the common lot. In the process, she
honours her patients and their work, and
the power of a diverse psychoanalytic
tradition, to bring enriched common
sense2 to therapeutic endeavour.

Eloquent distillation
In a little more than 100 pages, Meakins
offers an eloquent distillation of her own
avowedly pluralistic thinking on some of
the fundamental themes of analytic theory
and practice the centrality of the clients
story and language, how unconscious
processes manifest themselves in the
therapeutic relationship, the subtle
balances of creativity and destruction in
our assertions of privacy, the patterning
of our early relationships, our sexual
identities, the therapists and patients
sharing of uncertainty and meaning as a
collaborative hope.
But this is not a work of psychoanalytic
theory. It is a book about the
collaboration of patients and therapists
living in the work together. The voices
of patients, and their echoes in our own
bodies, are strong and moving. They are
the heart of each chapter. The poetry of
Meakins reflections accompanies their
stories and pays homage to the sacred in
the everyday.

Embedded in the ordinary

Her language clings to the ground. A
dream always has its own contour, its
beginning middle and end that was

cooked up in the unconscious; Like a

teenager who just cant be arsed she
started to turn up late and express
boredom with the therapy.
Her attitude to the tribalism of
psychoanalytic culture is equally down
to earth: The terms transference and
countertransference are so overloaded
with a complicated history of meanings
and an almost esoteric expectation of
psychic phenomena that this area more
than any other is, I think, where theoretical
explanations and expectations can
block us from experiencing what is really
What will you do with my story? is a
refreshing take on doing psychotherapy
within an analytic frame. It will encourage
therapists and patients who value a
search for meaning embedded in the
Paul Atkinson
personalities and why
people take drugs
the spike and the
Gary Winship (2012)
ISBN 9781780499765
Published by UKCP/Karnac
Talking to addicts about the dangers
of drug use is ineffective, and may even
increase the likelihood that some users
will take drugs. We might do well to
start from an axiom that drug users take
drugs because they are dangerous.
(Winship: 74)
This represents the core of Gary
Winships argument, carried throughout
the book, which is a mixture of solid
academic study, first-hand experience
and a highly creative approach to
psychotherapy in general and to
substance abuse in particular. The world
of addiction is under-researched in
the field of psychotherapy, puzzling
since psychotherapy offers a genuinely
alternative way of understanding why
people take drugs.

It is the ecstatic feeling

of intoxication that runs
the user into the pathway
of self-destructiveness and
sometimes death
Life and death
The oppositional drives of life and
death, which Freud described as eros
and thanatos, put the addict in a state
of constant conflict: The prospect of a
life-threatening disease or sudden death
from overdosing on an adulterated
intoxicant can seemingly be considered
in the same orbit. It is the ecstatic feeling
of intoxication that runs the user into
the pathway of self-destructiveness and
sometimes death. We are introduced to
Spike who Gary Winship worked with
for several months a heroin user in his
late forties nicknamed because of his
long-term injecting: Death in Spikes case
oozed from his very psychic and physical

Fed and sated

Drawing on literature, film, Freud,
religion, myth, poetry and music, we can
see connections between craving for
drugs and craving for breast milk. The
idea that addiction can be understood
psychologically to be an oral disorder
is not new, though Winships thesis
proposes a specific connection between
breast, milk and addiction. In research,
users report that a drug-induced state
evokes the feeling of being fed and sated
and replaces desires such as sex. There is
much more to explore in this relationship.
How can we move away from the
current focus on harm minimalisation to
looking at situations where someone has
stopped taking drugs and understanding
why this happened? Perhaps that is
the task of psychotherapy research. I
highly recommend this book to anyone
interested in the deeper manifestations
of any kind of addiction.
Diane Waller
Read Dianes full review of the book online at:

1 Bollas, C (2007). The Freudian moment. London: Karnac Kindle, loc. 173.
2 Mitchell, SA (1997). Influence and autonomy in psychoanalysis. Hillsdale, NJ: The Analytic Press, p.209.


ukcp members

Psychotherapy and spiritual

direction: two languages, one voice?
Lynette Harbornes new book asserts that the similarities
between psychotherapy and spiritual direction far outweigh
the differences. Spiritual direction, she says, could even be
considered a modality of psychotherapy.

sychotherapy and spiritual

direction: two languages, one
voice? considers the practices of
psychotherapy and spiritual direction.
When I started my psychotherapy
training I was already very interested
in the whole idea of spiritual direction,
as I wanted to be able to integrate my
Christian faith into my work without
compromising the professional
standards to which I was committed. I
did not want to be labelled a Christian
counsellor, but was comfortable to be
known as a psychotherapist who had
a personal Christian faith. With this in
mind, I decided to embark on spiritual
direction training simultaneously,
a decision that I was sometimes to
question when faced with the realities
of the time and energy commitment
that this choice required.
The term spiritual direction is perhaps
an unfortunate one, implying as it does
considerable power imbalance between
director and directee. However, this is
misleading as the process is very much one of
mutuality and shared exploration. Barry and
Connelly (1994: 51) state:Spiritual direction
places itself at the service of the relationship
between the directee and God.

Background and context

At that time, the prevailing view was
that spiritual direction and therapy were
two quite separate activities with little in
common, a view that initially I accepted
almost without question. However,
I regretted the considerable mutual
suspicion that I often observed between
the two groups of practitioners. At best,
the two activities were sometimes seen
as complementary but, perhaps more
frequently, there was an almost hostile view

The Psychotherapist

that they were completely different many

spiritual directors viewing psychotherapy
as purely the search for individual fulfilment
and many psychotherapists considering
any mention of spirituality or religion as
pathological and indicating distorted
thinking. I often heard spiritual directors
asserting quite forcefully, We arent
counsellors, and I sensed there was real
negativity in this assertion.
As my experience developed, I found that I
just couldnt relate to these polarised views,
as my own experience of personal therapy
and spiritual direction suggested something
very different. It seemed to me that the
similarities far outweighed the differences
and I eventually came to the conclusion that,
while the content might sometimes (though
not always) be rather different, the process
and the experience were essentially the
same. Perhaps even more important, the aim
of therapy and spiritual direction seemed
essentially to be identical, both seeking to
enable the client or directee to live life in
the fullest way possible, reflecting the words
of Irenaeus, a second century bishop in Gaul:
The Glory of God is the person fully alive.

Differing attitudes
During this period, I also realised just how
little had been written about spiritual
direction in a UK context. The North
American literature is considerable, and
attitudes towards spiritual direction are
very different from those found in the UK.
In the USA and Canada there are numerous
masters-level training courses, something
that as yet are just not available in this
country, where the provision of courses is
still thin on the ground, and where there
are still directors who disavow the whole
idea of the necessity and value of specific

It was a
I felt
enough perhaps brave enough to
express my emperors new clothes view of
this situation and to challenge traditional
attitudes. But, once I found my voice, I
realised that I was not alone in my thinking
and that others shared my experience.

The challenges
It is out of all these circumstances that
my book has emerged, and by the time
I started to write it I was already pretty
convinced that the similarities between
the two activities far outweighed the
differences. However, during the next two
years, I became increasingly aware that
such differences as there were almost
exclusively involved boundaries and
ethical issues rather than content, process
or even theoretical understanding. Two
things soon became clear to me. First
that psychotherapists do their clients a
disservice when issues of spirituality are
ignored or pathologised. And second, when
I considered spiritual direction in the light
of the common factors that Frank and Frank
identify as being present in all forms of
therapy (and indeed in all forms of healing),
it could be argued that the practice of
spiritual direction is consistent with the
stated criteria.

Ethical practice
During the process of writing the book,
and since its publication, my ideas have
developed and progressed. It has become
clear that the fundamental question that
lies at the root of the considerations I have
raised is one of ethical practice. In the case
of psychotherapy, it would be considered


ukcp members
completely unethical, unprofessional and
unacceptable for a therapists personal
views to intrude into the therapy to
the extent that something of particular
significance to the client could be ignored,
dismissed or pathologised. Most therapists
would claim to take a holistic view of the
person and yet some would not include the
spiritual in their definition of what holistic
means, despite the acceptance by the NHS
of the importance of acknowledging this
element in patient care. In fact, as early as
1948, the World Health Organization stated:
Health is not just the absence of disease,
it is a state of physical, psychological,
social and spiritual well being (Spiritual
Care Matters, 2009: 6). UKCP states:
Psychotherapy involves exploring feelings,
beliefs, thoughts and relevant events
(, clearly
indicating that a clients beliefs may be
part of therapy. Adrian Rhodes, chair of the
European Association of Psychotherapy also
stated in a UKCP press release in May this
year: It is ... wrong to ... define religious faith
as a pathological state to be eradicated.

Psychological principles
In the case of spiritual direction, lack
of knowledge and understanding of
basic psychological principles can even,
in certain cases, be considered to be a
danger to the mental and emotional
wellbeing of directees, which would
certainly constitute unethical practice. The
hostile attitude shown by some spiritual
directors towards anything they consider
indicates a professional approach also
helps to maintain a spiritual direction good,
psychotherapy bad attitude among some
clergy and others with devoutly held faith
views, many of whom would, in my view,
benefit enormously from some personal
therapy. Maintaining such a negative view
does nothing to help improve and increase
access to psychotherapy, therapy that could
well contribute to idea that the glory of
God is a person fully alive quoted above.
I am also becoming more aware of
the effect on the therapist of working
with clients spirituality and find myself
wondering whether the reluctance of
some therapists to engage with this
aspect of their clients material might
be seen as an unconscious avoidance of
personal challenge. By and large, therapists
are able to work with all sorts of client
material and are willing to examine their
countertransferential responses in either


their own therapy or supervision but this

is often not the case with spiritual issues.
Why not? If we consider therapy to be an
intersubjective process in which therapist
and client co-create meaning, it follows that
the effect of the therapy may be a mutual
one, and I wonder what this might mean for
a therapist who claims to be an atheist?

A modality of psychotherapy?
In the final chapter I conclude that the
similarities between psychotherapy
and spiritual direction far outweigh
the differences. Bearing in mind Frank
and Franks common factors theory, I
suggest that, in fact, spiritual direction
should be considered to be a modality
of psychotherapy. My observation is that
spiritual direction is no more different from
mainstream therapy than other specific
areas, for example bereavement or addiction
counselling. While I understand that not
everyone may be willing to go as far as this, I
invite readers to reflect on my proposal with
a genuinely open mind and a willingness
to share with and learn from each other so
that understanding and cross-fertilisation
between those involved in the two activities
can be increased and developed.
Throughout the book, I emphasise my

hope that discussion, dialogue and debate

may arise which will involve readers in a
way that will lead to improved provision of
both psychotherapy and spiritual direction.
It seems important that psychotherapy
training courses consider very carefully how
the subject of spirituality and religion may
be included in their programmes. I would
not advocate anything resembling a study
of comparative religion but I would like to
see students being challenged to consider
their own views and possible prejudices
in this area and would encourage them to
maintain an attitude of curiosity and open
mindedness. However, it is perhaps even
more important that those of us already
working in the field of psychotherapy can
clearly be seen to be modelling this in our
own attitudes and practice. P

Birmingham M and and Connelly WJ (1994).
Witnessing to the fire. Kansas City: Sheed & Ward.
Frank, J. D. & Frank, J. B. (1991). Persuasion and
healing: A comparative study of psychotherapy
(3rd ed.). Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University
Levison C (ed) (2009). Spiritual care matters.
Edinburgh: NHS Education for Scotland.

Lynette Harbornes book is available now from

Karnac Books. Go to


UKCP and Karnac books invite you to the launch of

LoveSex: an integrative model for

sexual education
by Cabby Laffy (part of the UKCP book series)
Friday 30 November 2012 6.30-8pm
Karnac book store, 118 Finchley Road, London NW3 5HT
This book looks at how our brains, minds, bodies and emotions interact to create our
experience of sexuality, and how we can create a sense of sexual self-esteem and a
nutritious sexual diet for ourselves. As Laffy notes in heriIntroduction, We think and talk
about sex as something we do, rather than sexuality being something that we have;
and being sexual, as something that we are. We talk little about feeling sexual or the
emotional and relational reasons for sexual desire; about the fact that it is usually an
other that we want to be sexual with. Our focus seems to be on how much sex we can
have rather than how we want to express ourselves sexually.
LoveSex challenges the cultural commodification of sex and sexuality, and encourages
the reader to experience being sexual rather than doing sex or looking sexy. It offers
help recovering from sexual shame and the sexual abuse and violence that are so
pervasive in our society, and it does all this in an affirming, accessible yet psychologically
sophisticated way, making it suitable for lay readers and therapists alike.

RSVP to Constance Govindin at or telephone:

020 7993 3175

ukcp members

Books in the UKCP series

Order books in the UKCP book series a partnership
between UKCP and a specialist in psychotherapy and
mental health publishing using the form overleaf
Why cant I help this child
to learn? Understanding
emotional barriers to
Helen High (2011) 16.99
ISBN 18557578771
The book outlines theories of child
development from the point of view of the
kinds of relationships children make with
adults and the effects of their relationships
on their learning. In exploring these issues,
the book draws on attachment theory
and psychoanalytic theories of emotional
Therapy with children: an existential
Chris Scalzo (2010) 18.99 ISBN
This book explores the existential themes
and challenges present in all therapeutic
relationships when working with
The role of brief therapy in attachment
Lisa Wake (2010) 20.99 ISBN
A comprehensive summary of the range of
approaches that exist
in the brief therapy world, including
cognitive analytic therapy, cognitive
behavioural therapy, eye movement
desensitisation and reprocessing,
Ericksonian therapy, neurolinguistic
psychotherapy, provocative therapy,
rational emotive behaviour therapy, and
self-relations therapy.
The use of psychoanalytic concepts
in therapy with families: for all
professionals working with families
Hilary A Davies (2010) 16.99 ISBN
This book begins with a readable
practitioners guide to psychoanalytic
theory and concepts. It moves on to give
a number of detailed practice-based
examples of the application of this
theoretical model in the therapy room

The Psychotherapist

with the families of children seeking help

with a variety of difficulties.
Why therapists choose to become
therapists: a practice-based enquiry
Sofie Bager-Charleson (2010) 20.99
ISBN 1855758261
At the heart of this book lie six separate
accounts as told by counsellors
and psychotherapists in a reflective
writing and peer support group, each
representing a different modality and all
coming with very different backgrounds.
The 3-point therapist
Hilary A Davies (2009) 9.99
ISBN 1855757462
The 3-point therapist is
the charming story of one
trainees journey in search of
professional success and recognition. What
she learns is unexpected and changes her
predicted path.
Child-centred attachment therapy:
the CcAT programme
Alexandra Maeja Raicar with
contributions from Pauline Sear and
Maggie Gall (2009) 20.99 ISBN
This book describes the development of
the child-centred attachment therapy
(CcAT) model of working with children
with attachment difficulties.
Diversity, discipline and devotion in
psychoanalytic psychotherapy: clinical,
training and supervisory perspectives
Gertrud Mander (2007) 18.99 ISBN
The emergent self: an existential-gestalt
Peter Philippson (2009) 16.99 ISBN
This book tracks a particular
understanding of self as emergent from
the relational field: philosophically, from
research evidence and in its implications
for psychotherapy.

Hidden twins: what adult opposite sex

twins have to teach us
Olivia Lousada (2009) 20.99
ISBN 1855757417
An insightful look into the lives of
three opposite-sex twin pairs. Candid,
informative and rich in psychological
Not just talking: conversational analysis,
Harvey Sacks gift to therapy
Jean Pain (2009) 19.99 ISBN
Good relationships depend, above all, on
our skills in conversation. Harvey Sacks
method, conversational analysis, was the
springboard for Jean Pains research into
psychotherapy as a social activity that
depends for its success on the quality of
the therapeutic dialogue.
Our desire of unrest: thinking about
Michael Jacobs (2009) 20.99 ISBN
Psychosis in the family: a personal and
transpersonal journey
Janet Love (2009) 16.99 ISBN
Dialogue and desire: Mikhail Bakhtin and
the linguistic turn in psychotherapy
Rachel Pollard (2008) 20.99 ISBN
The muse as therapist: a new
poetic paradigm for
Heward Wilkinson (2008)
20.99 ISBN 1855755956
Shakespeare on the couch
Michael Jacobs (2008) 16.99 ISBN
What is psychotherapeutic research?
Del Loewenthal and David Winter (2006)
24.99 ISBN 1855753013
Revolutionary connections:
psychotherapy and neuroscience
Jenny Corrigall and Heward Wilkinson
(ed) (2003)
22.99 ISBN 1855759411


ukcp members


unt fo

unt fo


Order form


I would like to order the following UKCP-Karnac series books:



Price Each


Papers from
Pink Therapy
Pink Therapy has published papers
translated entirely for free by a number
of volunteer translators
These papers on gender and sexual diversity therapy
and another on sexual orientation, initially appeared in
a slightly amended format in the Sage Handbook for
Counselling and Psychotherapy (third edition) and now
the English versions are being made available alongside
foreign translations.

Sub total
Less 20% UKCP member discount*
Plus postage**
*UKCP membership number
**Postage Within the UK: 2.50 for the first book and 1 for each
additional book. All items are sent by second class post or similar within
the UK. For an alternative postal service or overseas, please email for a price

Please send my book(s) to:



o I enclose a cheque for

o I would like to pay

o Visa

o Mastercard

payable to UKCP
by credit/debit card

o Maestro

Pink Therapy are making these papers available for free

download to help increase awareness of Gender and
Sexual Diversity Therapy (GSDT) issues. They are aimed at
psychologists and other mental health workers, but we
suspect many other people will find them of interest as
they represent our current thinking in this area. You can
download them here:

If you would like to offer your services

to translate these papers into
other languages please contact

Books for review

Under the skin: a psychoanalytic study of body
By Alessandra Lemma
Considers the motivation behind why people pierce, tattoo,
cosmetically enhance or otherwise modify their body from a
psychoanalytic perspective.

The quest to feel good

Card no.
Start date

Expiry date

Security code**

Issue no. (Maestro only)

**Last three digits on signature strip.

By Paul Rasmussen
Emotions, rather than simply being the result of random or
disordered biochemical processes, are adaptive mechanisms
that are often overly relied upon as a function of basic
learning processes.

Cardholders name

Group and Team Coaching

Statement address

By Christine Thornton
A new perspective on the subconscious and non-verbal
processes through which people learn and communicate
with each other in groups.


Cardholders signature

To review these books contact

Cut out this form and return to: The Psychotherapist Book Orders,
UKCP, 2nd Floor Edward House, 2 Wakley Street, London EC1V 7LT

For a full list of books currently available for review, along with
reviewers guidelines, visit:


ukcp members

Welcome to our new UKCP members

New UKCP-registered






Young Sun



New UKCP-registered
psychotherapeutic counsellors



Board of Trustees biography
Issue 51, Summer 2012 p29
Apologies to Inger Gordon for omitting
to print that sheis also the current
Chair of the College of Family, Couple
and Systemic Therapy.

Key ACAT: Association of Cognitive and Analytic Therapists; AFT: Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Practice; BC: The Bowlby Centre;
BCPC: Bath Centre for Psychotherapy and Counselling; CABP: Chiron Association for Body Psychotherapists; CCPE: Centre for Counselling &
Psychotherapy Education; CFAR: Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research; FCP: Foundation for Psychotherapy and Counselling; GAPS: Guild
of Analytical Psychology and Spirituality; GASW: Group Analysis South West; GCL: Gestalt Centre, London; GPTI: Gestalt Psychotherapy Training
Institute; HIPC: Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy College; IATE: Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education; IGAP: Independent Group of
Analytical Psychologists; ITA: Institute of Transactional Analysis; MC: Minster Centre; MI: Metanoia Institute; NCHP: National College of Hypnosis and
Psychotherapy; NGPC Northern Guild for Psychotherapy and Counselling; PA: Philadelphia Association; PET Psychosynthesis and Education Trust;
SEA: Society for Existential Analysis; SITE: Site for Contemporary Psychoanalysis; SPCRC: School of Psychotherapy and Counselling Regents College;
SPTI: Sherwood Psychotherapy Training Institute; TEM: Temenos; TER: Terapia; UPCA: Universities Psychotherapy and Counselling Association;
WPF: WPF Therapy Ltd

The Psychotherapist


continuing professional development


UKCP accepts no responsibility and gives

no endorsement or recommendation of
the courses or individuals mentioned in the

27 & 28 October 2012 Desford,
Imago Relationship Therapy - an
introduction to Imago theory & skills for
working with couples
Imago Relationship Therapy is a
comprehensive and practical therapeutic
approach for helping people experiencing
relationship difficulties to achieve
relationships which are safe, passionate
and satisfying. Facilitator: Montreal
psychologist Dr Sophie Slade. For more
information contact Anita Mountain.
T: 01455 824 475
W: and www.

6 November 2012 London
Body dysmorphic disorder. Recognition,
assessment and treatment masterclass
The masterclass delivers an overview of
the key issues relevant to the recognition,
assessment and treatment of Body
Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). Co-ordinated
by Anusha Govender, Principal Cognitive
Behavioural Psychotherapist. For more
information contact Nick Worner.
T: 020 3513 6305

8 November 2012 28 April 2013

Imago Relationship Therapy: basic
For therapists who already have a practice
with couples or who wish to develop one.
12 day small group intensive program
helps therapists to grow personally and
professionally. For more information
contact Sophie Slade.


9 November 2012 Bristol

Working With Men Anger Numbness
and Grief
A one-day training seminar with Simon
Roe. Contact Juliet Grayson.
T: 01291 638 805

911 November 2012 London

Psychodrama Experiential Workshop
with Anna Chesner
These weekends are designed to give an
opportunity for personal exploration and
development in a safe environment, as
well as an understanding and experience
of the method. Contact Anna Chesner.
Contact telephone for more details: 020
7515 6342

Save the date!

UKCP Promoting Occupational Practice Committee annual supervision conference

An evolving art?
Contemporary developments in supervision
Saturday 2 March 2013, London
The practice of supervision, like its sister the
practice of psychotherapy, has factors in common
across a diversity of approaches and special
interests. As we are buffeted by complex demands
personally, professionally and politically, finding and
consolidating common supervisory principles and
practices is just as important as celebrating what
makes practice different. This conference offers an
opportunity to hear a multiplicity of supervisory
voices coming together to create a polyphonic

Who might benefit from attending?

If you take your own work with clients to another professional
to critically enquire and reflect upon it; or if you offer a space
to which others come to critically enquire and reflect upon
their work, this conference is for you.
health professionals
Occupational therapists
Social workers
Psychologists using therapeutic approaches
and clinical supervision

More details to follow soon. For further information please contact
or telephone 020 7014 9966.


continuing professional development

10 & 11 November 2012 London
Alchemy of Relationships
Alchemy of Relationships. Exploring, opening
our hearts and changing our relationships. For
more information contact CCPE.
T: 0207 266 3006

10 November 2012

Sex, lies and social

networking growing up in a
technological age
UKCP Childrens Faculty conference
focussing on the specific challenges faced
by children and young people in the
internet age.
T: 020 7014 9966

10 November 2012 Kettering

The Meaning of Money and Time in the
Therapeutic Relationship
This workshop explores issues around
payment and money, what is being shown in
the transaction with you by the client. Time
issues look at boundaries and violations.
Contact Karin Creasy. Full details on website.
T: 07812 049 109

15 November 2012 Newcastleupon-Tyne

Psychoanalytic Insights into Personality
Development in Children and Young
Psychoanalytic Insights into Personality
Development in Children and Young
People. A series of three thematic
supervision seminars, structured on a
case-based discussion group format.
Number three - Individuation; Latency
and Adolescence. For more information
contact Annette Butters.
T: 0191 209 8383

T: 020 7183 2485


16 November 2012 Castlefield,

EFT Level 1 (Introductory) Training with
EFT Master Tania A Prince
This is an intensive introductory
training course that provides students
with a thorough grounding in how to
effectively use EFT. The course includes
demonstrations and gives students
plenty of opportunity to practice with
fellow attendees in a safe, supervised
environment. For more information
contact Tania A Prince.
T:01625 520016

16 & 17 November 2012

Lancaster Hall Hotel
Group Analysis and Psychodrama
2 day workshop. Group Analysis and
Psychodrama. Dr Mario Marrone and
Marcia Karp will demonstrate the methods
separately and then combined. Contact
Edna Davis. London Psychodrama Network
Cost 120. Students 50.
T: 07944 856 083

17 &18 November 2012

Castlefield, Manchester
EFT Level 2 Training with EFT Master
Tania A Prince
This is an in-depth, intensive training
course that provides plenty of opportunity
for attendees to practice in supervised
conditions. It is full of live demonstrations.
The course is intended for those who
would like to gain a deeper knowledge
of EFT and for those who would like
to become a Practitioner. For more
information contact Tania A Prince.
T: 01625 520016

15 - 19 November 2012 London

17 November 2012 London

Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy:

Teacher Development - Part 1
Trainers: Patrizia Collard PhD & Helen
Stephenson. Fee: 660 / 620 if booked 2
months in advance. Location: 11mins from
London Bridge by train. Accommodation
available at the same venue for 30/night
(Only 2 rooms)

Anger and Rage - Psychodrama

Anger can be a healthy and natural human
emotion. In this workshop we will be
looking at the constructive use of anger,
as well as rage and the roots of violence.
Contact Anna Chesner.
T: 020 7515 6342

The Psychotherapist


17 November 2012 Lewes, East

Young People on the Edge: Working
with Adolescents who appear Out of
Experiential workshop for people who
work with adolescents who seem chaotic
and out of control. Working effectively
with shameful, angry and confused young
people and their networks. Contact Tanya
T: 07790 979 571

19 & 20 November 2012 Tavistock

Early Years: Importance of Early
Intervention for Babies at Risk
Early Years: Importance of Early
Intervention for Babies at Risk. Sponsored
by the Charity ipAn. A Toolkit for the
Emotional Screening of Infants and Early
Signs of Distress. For more information
contact the Tavistock Centre.
T: 0207 4333112

23 November 2012 Manchester

Managing Dangerous and Potentially
Dangerous Persons
This course will enable the therapist to
manage the risk of violence in primary
care, secondary care and private therapy
settings. PDP definition, ways of working,
written multi-agency communications and
safety plans. Formulation of violence risk.
For more information please contact Mr
Kevin Kennedy MSc MPhil
T: 0161 683 0781

23 - 25 November 2012 Bristol

AIT Basics
The first seminar teaching a method of
energy therapy that integrates into many
psychotherapy modalities. A pre-requisite
for all other AIT (Advanced Integrative
Therapy) seminars. Contact Heather

24 November 2012
Exploring Existential Conscience in
Therapeutic Practice


continuing professional development

This is a one-day workshop exploring the
therapeutic advantages of distinguishing
between moral and existential
conscience; and in particular, examining
the concept of existential conscience
as a distinct creative potential with its
own developmental origins. A significant
proportion of the day will be dedicated
to the therapeutic applications of these
concepts through a brief analysis of a
film, clinical examples, and experiential
Contact Prof George Berguno
T: 07530 737 930

24 November 2012 Winchester

Teaching Clients to Tolerate Emotions
This workshop is aimed at therapists who
work with emotionally avoidant clients.
Two senior clinicians from the NHS will
share their experience of using exposure
techniques with clients who try to avoid
painful emotions such as sadness, shame
or guilt as well as anxiety. They will
introduce the principles and pitfalls of
exposure work and demonstrate how to
use them with clients.
Contact John Dunkley
T: 02380487592

24 November 2012 Birmingham

Breathing into life - exploring our
breathing moving selves
This workshop will increase our
awareness of our breath and explore our
relationship with our own breathing. We
will explore what supports or hinders
our breath, how our breath supports
or interrupts our vitality and creativity,
and how we can apply this to our
work with clients. Includes experiential
exercises and creative explorations (e.g.
movement, touch, writing and using art
materials). Run by Juliet Denham, Gestalt
psychotherapist and trainer. Contact
Juliet Denham.
T: 01746 718 231

the concept of existential conscience

as a distinct creative potential with its
own developmental origins. A significant
proportion of the day will be dedicated
to the therapeutic applications of these
concepts through a brief analysis of a
film, clinical examples, and experiential
Contact Prof George Berguno.
T: 07530 737 930

24 November 2012 Kettering,

Creative Ethical Practice
How do we develop and sustain a practice
that is ethical but not rule-bound; creative
but not careless; safe but not personally or
professionally defensive? Contact Karin Creasy.
Day workshop with Patti Owens.
T: 07812 049 109

24 & 25 November 2012 London

Creative CoupleWork Diploma
Post-graduate training over 7 weekends,
November 2012 - May 20, in London
and one residential week in Spain. A
dynamic combination of systemic, somatic,
humanistic and analytical elements within
an evolutionary and developmental
framework. A skill set, methodology and
theory base pioneered for two decades.
For more information contact Lyn Jones.
T: 020 7267 7098

24 & 25 November 2012

Exploration of Equality, Diversity &
Anti-discriminatory Practice within the
Therapeutic Encounter
This workshop, led by Divine Chaura, will
eplore and examine how equality, diversity
and anti-discriminatory practice come into
the client-therapist relationship.For more
information please contact Kate Evans
T: 01723 376246

24 November 2012 London

Exploring Existential Conscience in
Therapeutic Practice s
This is a one-day workshop exploring the
therapeutic advantages of distinguishing
between moral and existential
conscience; and in particular, examining


infant mental health and early

intervention. Cost- 150.
T: 0141 445 6066

1 December 2012 Hemel
Trauma and the Body: Dissociation and
Led by Carolyn and Rob Spring, exploring
why so many trauma survivors suffer
from numerous physical issues eg chronic
pain and chronic fatigue syndrome, or
a difficulty in connecting with the body
at all. Well be looking at the impact of
trauma on the body, and how it seems that
the body can also be a key to unlocking
the psychological issues of trauma, in
particular with reference to dissociative
For more information contact Rob Spring.
T: 01480 878409

1 December 2012 Edinburgh

Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy
(REBT) its Theory and Practice with
A British Psychological Accredited Seminar
presented by Robin Thorburn of Exclusive
Hypnotherapy, the longest established
Hypno-Psychotherapy Practice in
Contact Robin Thorburn.
T: 0131 4145 2485

1 December 2012 London

Journey into the Labyrinth
Transformational CPD workshop
inspired by myth and deepened through
movement, music and arts. We will
discover what treasures lie within and how
we can find new possibilities for our life.
Contact Isabella Florschutz.
T: 07796 331 618

27 November 2012 Edinburgh

Every Baby Matters
Mellow Parenting are hosting their 3rd
international conference at the Royal
College of Physicians of Edinburgh.
Conference themes include attachment,

4 December 2012 London

Post Holocaust Transgenerational &
Intergenerational Trauma - are you still
touched by the Holocaust?
We will explore how transgenerational

continuing professional development

Write for The Psychotherapist
Would you like to respond to something youve seen in this issue?
Or to something in the outside world that is affecting you as a
Do you or your OM have a particular group of clients that you
specialise in working with? Or are you involved in a particular
project you think is innovative or unusual?
Have you attended a workshop or seminar that has influenced
your personal practice that you would like to share with or
recommend to other psychotherapists?
Write with your suggestion(s) to
trauma unfolds, using the example of the
Holocaust. In particularly -the somatic,
relational and emotional aspects and
how this can be attended to in therapy.
Contact Dr Elya Steinberg and Gerhard
T: 07956 899 516; 07984 085 355

4 - 8 December 2012
Nr Budapest, Hungary
Chiron and the ancient mysteries
Residential exploring the archetype of
Chiron and its implications for self and
world healing. Uses and evokes the
energies of the field and our ancestors
for reconnection.
For more information contact Bronwen
T: 07809 637 533

6 - 8 December 2012 London

Schema Therapy for Complex Cases
A 3 day workshop providing theory,
experiential exercises and live
demonstrations. This workshop is Module
1 of three and is part of the ISST approved
curriculum in Schema Therapy.
Fee 350.
Contact Dr Gill Heath.

6 December 2012 Chester

Mindfulness and Inquiry
1 day masterclass.
Contact Francis Hooton.
T: 01248 382 939

The Psychotherapist

7 December 2012 Manchester

Psychotherapeutics of Sex Addiction
This course will look at the assessment,
management and realpse prevention
strategies used for sex addiction.
In addiction it discusses blurred
boundaries of legal and illegal sexual
behaviours. Attendees will recieve a
workbook od proven exercises. An
advanced course will be available. For
more information please contact Mr
Kevin Kennedy MSc MPhil
T: 0161 683 0781

8 December 2012

4th UKCP Open Forum

Critical moments for psychotherapy
in Britain
Topics covered at the next forum will
include the UKCP register, UKCPs Central
Complaints Process and UKCPs ethical
stance in society. Join the debate in
person or via video-link from your
computer. Pre-booking is essential for this
event and viewing the live video link. To
guarantee your place please complete our
online form on the UKCP website.
T: 020 7014 9966

8 December 2012 Kettering

Understanding Suicide
1 day training is designed to equip
participants with an increased emotional
and practical base to be able to understand
the complexities inherent in suicide.
Contact Karin Creasy. With Suzanne Schultz.
T: 07812 049 109

11 - 15 December 2012 North

Four-day Mindfulness Retreat
Four-day retreat. A four-day residential
course in North Wales, offering space for
nourishment, inspiration and learning
focusing on Mindfulness. For more
information contact Anne Douglas.
T: 01248 382939

11 December 2012 North Wales

Silent Retreat
Deepening Mindfulness Practice for 8
week course graduates. 5 day residential.
Contact Francis Hooton.
T: 01248 382 939

15 December 2012 Kettering

Reflect, Recharge, Explore, Create, 2
The Reflect, Recharge... series of
experiential, creative workshops for
practitioners offers Ending- My Work,
Myself as its theme, using art, music,and
other media in a gentle and supported
setting. Contact Karin Creasy.
T: 07812 049 109

January 2013
1 January 2013 - 1 March 2014
TScPTI CPD Certificate: Bodywork in
Eight three day modules over 14 months
with Janet Hills to deepen your theoretical

Wealden Institute presents

Saturday & Sunday
4 & 5 May 2013

Embracing our Heritage:

the Legacy of Eric Berne
With Claude Steiner TSTA
and other leading contributors
For details go to:


continuing professional development

T: 02380487592
ATSAC Annual Conference
Saturday 26th January 2013 - London
Sex Addiction - Attachment,
Trauma or Opportunity?
An opportunity to consider the complex
issues that often present in the therapy
room. In addition, well explore how modern
technology is creating a new breed of sexual
addiction and consider how this influences
both assessment and treatment.
ATSAC Member - 105 (early bird 85*)
Non-member 115 (early bird 95*)
Speakers: Sir Richard Bowlby, Dr Janina
Fisher, Paula Hall & Eoin Stephens
For further information please email
Cynthia Palmer on

knowledge and explore a mindful

and experimental attitude to working
safely with embodiment in therapeutic
environments. Contact Kate Evans.
T: 01723 376246

1 January 2013 - 31 March 2013

North Wales
Distance Learning 8 week Mindfulness
Contact Francis Hooton

5 - 12 January 2013 London

Teacher Training Retreat Level 2
Contact Francis Hooton

12 January 2013 London

Teaching Clients Mindfulness of
Mindfulness skills can help emotionally
avoidant clients to become more aware
of their moment-by-moment experience.
In this workshop two senior clinicians
from the NHS will share their experiences
and techniques for teaching clients to
be mindful of their emotions. Delegates
will learn how to encourage mindful
experiencing and how to gently highlight
the internal behaviours that prevent people
being fully open to the current moment.
Contact John Dunkley


12 - 17 January 2013 North Wales

MBSR - Aspects of the 8 week Course
5 day residential
Contact Francis Hooton

15 January 2013 London

Attending to the Silence trans- and
intergenerational post-holocaust
trauma group for all sides
The holocaust and its aftermath still
have a fundamental mind and body
impact on many of us. We are inviting
all those with whom these thoughts
resonate to an ongoing therapy group.
Contact Dr Elya Steinberg and Gerhard
T: 07956 899 516; 07984 085 355

17 - 20 January 2013 Cotswolds

The Heros Journey and the Creative Self
with Robert Dilts and Stephen Gilligan
A rare opportunity to experience two
of the worlds foremost facilitators codelivering. Both captivating, inspiring
trainers at the top of their fields, but
together, live energy that shouldnt be
missed. Contact John or Samantha Field.
T: 01386 725 679

Skype. There will be a 5,000-word essay to

complete in order to qualify. Contact Sam
T: 020 7431 2693

25 January 2013 - 1 February 2013

Teacher Training Retreat Level 1
8 day residential
Contact Francis Hooton

February 2013
1 February 2013 Chester
Mindfulness and Cancer
1 day Master Class
Contact Francis Hooton
T: 01248382939

12 February 2013 London

Attending to the Silence trans- and
intergenerational post-holocaust
trauma group for all sides
The holocaust and its aftermath still have
a fundamental mind and body impact
on many of us. We are inviting all those
with whom these thoughts resonate to an
ongoing therapy group. Contact Dr Elya
Steinberg and Gerhard Payrhuber.
T: 07956899516; 07984085355

18 January 2013 - 8 March 2013

Teacher Training Retreat Level 1
Contact Francis Hooton

19 January 2013 - 22 September

2013 London
Diploma in Supervision
19-20 Jan, 16-17 Mar, 18-19 May, 20-21 Jul,
21-22 Sep, 2013
The course will run over five weekends.
The training involves 45 hours theory and
15 hours median group experience. In
addition 45 hours of group supervision of
supervision will take place weekly either
face to face or via telephone conferencing/

The Professional Certificate

in Sex Addiction (PCSA)
This course takes place over eight 2 day
modules and provides comprehensive
training in the treatment of sex addiction.
The curriculum is based on an integrative
approach and teaching is delivered
by a range of professionals working
within the field.
Dates: 2 modules per month

December 12 July 13
Venue: Warwickshire
Cost: 2,250
For further information please email
Cynthia Palmer on

continuing professional development

Attractive individual rooms and large
group room for rent within a Counselling
Psychotherapy and Wellbeing Centre in the
heart of Romsey in Hampshire
Reasonable rates from 10/hour
to help you grow your business.
25 for regular 4 hour session over 42 weeks/year.
Please call Wings on 07946 400 257
or e mail
16 & 17 February 2013 London
Engaging with Diversity
The London Centre for Psychodrama
welcomes guest presenter Di Adderley,
sociodrama and psychodrama trainer.
Contact Anna Chesner.
T: 020 7515 6342

23 February 2013 Cumbria

A Body of Knowledge Annual TA
A 1 day regional conference event with
the focus on the body. We are looking for
presents the orkshop proposals deadline is
1st August 2012. Contact Coral Harrison.
T: 07766 706 066

28 February 2013 London

Group Supervision in the Helping
Robin Shohet has developed an
integrative process model with Peter
Hawkins which is used internationally in a
variety of helping professions.
Contact John Dunkley
T: 02380487592

march 2013

2 March 2013

UKCP Promoting
Occupational Practice Committee
Annual supervision conference
An evolving art? Contemporary
developments in supervision
The practice of supervision, like its
sister the practice of psychotherapy, has
factors in common across a diversity
of approaches and special interests. As
we are buffeted by complex demands

The Psychotherapist

personally, professionally and politically,

finding and consolidating common
supervisory principles and practices is just
as important as celebrating what makes
practice different. This conference offers
an opportunity to hear a multiplicity of
supervisory voices coming together to
create a polyphonic conversation.
T: 020 7014 9966

to experience the mindfulness-based

stress reduction 8-week course and may
be the first step towards training to deliver
Mindfulness-based courses. For more
information contact Anne Douglas.
T: 01248 382939

June 2013
4 - 7 June 2013 North Wales
Specialist Teacher Training in MBCT
4 day residential
T: 01248 382 939

7 June 2013 Chester

Mindfulness and Groupwork
1 Day masterclass.
T: 01248 382 939

APRIL 2013
11 April 2013 Oxford

13 & 14 June 2013 Bangor,

North Wales

CBT for Insomnia with Prof Kevin Morgan

Insomnia is the most frequently
reported psychological symptom in
Britain, yet it remains poorly understood,
and inadequately treated in most
healthcare settings. This workshop is
designed to improve the understanding,
clinical assessment, and psychological
management of chronic sleep problems
which arise either alone (such as primary
insomnia) or in the context of other
physical or psychological conditions (such
as comorbid insomnia).
Contact John Dunkley
T: 02380487592

Enquiry Process
2 day workshopT: 01248 382 939

august 2013
2 August 2013 Chester
Mindfulness and Brain Injury
T: 01248 382 939

Holistic Insurance Services

Specialist Insurance for
Counsellors and Psychotherapists

MAY 2013
3 May 2013 Chester
Mindfulness and Psychological
1 day Master ClassContact Francis Hooton
T: 01248 382 939

6 - 11 May 2013 North Wales

Five-day Residential MBSR Mindfulness
This programme offers an alternative way

Are you paying too much

for your insurance?
We can provide malpractice, professional indemnity,
public and products liability cover on a losses occuring basis,
with full retroactive cover from as little as 55.00 for a
limit of indemnity of 5,000,000.
To apply for cover and find out more about Holistic
Insurance Services, please visit our website at:
or telephone 0845 222 2236
Holistic Insurance Services is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority


continuing professional development

Dont miss out

December 2012 to April 2014

A part-time course for registered health professionals

If you are not a member of UKCP

and would like to receive a regular
copy of The Psychotherapist, send
this completed form, along with
your payment to: Subscriptions,
UKCP, 2nd Floor Edward House,
2 Wakley Street, London EC1V 7LT

The Sesame Institute, is offering a two year continuing professional

development course in London beginning in December 2012.
Linked to the work of James Hillman this Jungian programme
is open to registered counsellors, psychotherapists, all health
professionals, teachers and clergy wishing to discover how
embodied imagination and movement offer an image language
for the Soul, when words cannot do justice to the presence of the
numinous teacher and inner healer.

o I would like to subscribe to

The Psychotherapist for
12 months (four issues)
Subscription type

Subscription amount

o New o Renewal

o 50

*Students, educational establishments or libraries.

o 25*

If you are claiming the student discount, please give details of the
educational institution, and the name and dates of your course:

Please send my copy to:


The course places high value on experiential work having its own
potency in therapy, and honours symbol based language as the
prime energy in any healing work. Please see for more.
The inclusive fee is 2500. Successful graduates will be awarded
a Sesame Institute Certificate in the Use of drama and movement
in therapy.
More information: If you would like further details of this or any
of the other courses Sesame runs please contact Christine Hanfrey
at the Sesame Institute.
27 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8N
Tel: 020 7633 9690



o I enclose a cheque for

o I would like to pay

o Visa

o Mastercard

payable to UKCP
by credit/debit card

o Maestro

Card no.
Start date

Expiry date

Security code**

Issue no. (Maestro only)

**Last three digits on signature strip.

Join the discussion

You can now follow us on Twitter and Facebook

Cardholders name
Statement address


Cardholders signature

o Please invoice:


Twitter: @UKCP_Updates


or if youre a member of UKCP,

join our Linked In group


continuing professional development

Exclusive Member Rates

Towergate Professional Risks are pleased to offer exclusive Professional Liability
Insurance policy rates for members of the UK Council for Psychotherapy.

Key Features:

The prospect of a legal

claim can be a very
stressful experience.
Were here to help you
and to relieve some
of this stress, leaving
you to concentrate
on looking after your

Lee Gilbert

s Cover includes Professional Indemnity,

Public & Product Liability and Libel &
s Covers work done in the UK, abroad or
s No excesses to pay in the event of a
s Includes complaints advice and response
cover, plus representation at disciplinary
s Cover provided by AXA Insurance plc

Team Manager

Cover is subject to underwriter acceptance, terms and

conditions. Further information including policy
documents, prices and policy exclusions can be found
on our website. Dont forget to tell us that you are a
UKCP member to benefit from the exclusive member
to get a quote or take out cover online
or call: 0844

346 3307 (lines open Mon Fri 8.30am 5.30pm)

or e-mail:
Towergate Professional Risks is a trading name of Towergate Underwriting
Group Limited
Registered Office: Towergate House, Eclipse Park, Sittingbourne Road,
Maidstone, Kent ME14 3EN
Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

The Psychotherapist


continuing professional development

Accredited and Validated
Couple Counselling and
Psychotherapy Training

Want to train as a Couple Therapist?

Come to our OPEN EVENING to find out how and for

an opportunity to speak to our tutors and students.
Date: Friday 9 November, 17:30 19:30
Fee: FREE but please register details

Autumn Conference

Making Judgments or being judgmental?

A Problem in Clinical Assessment and Beyond
Keynote Speakers: Penny Crick, Clinical Director,
London Clinic of Psychoanalysis and Stan Ruszczynski,
Clinical Director, Portman Clinic.
Date: Saturday 24 November, 09:30 16:30
Fee: 125 or 105 if booked before 1/10/12

CPD Short Courses programme released

View the full programme on our website.
020 7380 1975

70 Warren Street
London W1T 5PB

Registered Charity No. 211058

Advertising with UKCP

There are a number of ways to advertise with UKCP
Display ads
For a current advertising pack and rate card, please
contact UKCP on 020 7014 9490
or email
Free events listings
Free event ads are available in this magazine or
on the UKCP website. To submit an event visit Limit:
approximately 30 words; longer ads will be refused
or cut to fit space.
Free consulting room listings
If you have a consulting room for hire, you can
advertise it in the consulting rooms for hire section
of our website.
Free job ads
We can include job ads relevant to UKCP members on
our website, along with application packs and/or links
to your own website.
All advertisement bookings and queries to



su Sp
ra ec
nc ia
e lis
no t H
w om
av e

Covering all Elements of Counselling & Psychotherapy

Oxygen deliver a market leading professional liability

insurance that is specifically designed to provide peace
of mind to those working in the psychological professions.
The company is led by Steve Johnson; who has been working directly
with these professions for almost 25 years, creating tailor made
insurance policies to suit the exact requirements of the individual customer.
Oxygen believe in fair and reasonable pricing and, unlike with some
providers, there are no administration fees and no hidden charges.
The options:
Levels of Cover

Total annual cost

of the insurance

1,500,000 (one point five million GBP) any one claim


3,000,000 (three million GBP) any one claim


5,000,000 (five million GBP) any one claim


Prices quoted include insurance premium tax at 6%

Contact Steve Johnson or one of his
team directly on: 01274 760460
or email:

Oxygen and Oxygen Insurance are trading styles of

Beaumonts Insurance Brokers Ltd who are authorized
and regulated by the Financial Services Authority







continuing professional development

Complex Cases



Est. 1980

Our 2012/13 CPD Programme includes:

- Diploma in Supervision starts Nov 2012
- Certificate in Groupwork workshops including:
Developing Effective Groupwork 18 January 2013

Dr Tara Gormley & Dr Gillian Heath

Dr Tara Gormley & Dr Gillian Heath
Schema Therapists UK
Schema Therapists UK
Thurs6 6thSat
Sat8 8thDecember


A 3 day workshop providing:

A 3 day workshop providing:
experiential exercises
experiential exercises
live demonstrations
live demonstrations
This workshop is Module 1 of three and is part of the ISST
This workshop is Module 1 of three and is part of the ISST
approved curriculum in Schema Therapy.
approved curriculum in Schema Therapy.
Modules 2 and 3 will be held in February and May 2013.
Modules 2 and 3 will be held in February and May 2013.
For all enquiries email or visit our
For all enquiries email or visit our
website for further information and a booking form.
website for further information and a booking form.

Understanding Group Dynamics 9 & 10 May 2013

Group Facilitation 10 x Friday mornings in Autumn 2013

Gestalt in Organisational Development
- Core Concepts for Working with Organisations
2-day workshop in spring 2013
- Giving Voicefor those afraid to sing and shout!
8 & 9 December 2012
- Working with Children & Adolescents
812 April 2013
- Working with Gender Identity 20 April 2013
We also have a selection of well-appointed,
comfortable Therapy Rooms for hire from 6.75ph
For details of all our courses, visit our website:
contact us on
020 7247 6501 or

Centre for Counselling

& Psychotherapy Education

Centre for Counselling

& Psychotherapy Education

Weekend Seminars 2012

M.A. in Transpersonal
Counselling and Psychotherapy

u Facilitating
u Alchemy

Spiritual Growth - 27 & 28 October

of Relationships - 10 & 11 November

Cost: 160 (non-refundable deposit 80)

Times: Saturday 10am 5pm

Sunday 10am 5pm

Diploma in Transpersonal Couples

Counselling & Psychotherapy
This one-year p/t post-graduate course offers a holistic
and integrative approach to working with couples.
The course takes place over nine weekends.

Start date: January 2013


Beauchamp Lodge, 2 Warwick Crescent,
London W2 6NE Tel: 020 7266 3006


Conflict Challenge & Confrontation in Groups

7 & 8 February 2013

An academic degree combined with thorough

professional psychotherapy training at
Masters Degree level.
Validated by
The University of Northampton and
accredited by the BACP and UKCP
This is a two-year part time M.A. training.
Please contact CCPE for further details
and entry requirements.

Start date: January 2013

Beauchamp Lodge, 2 Warwick Crescent,
London W2 6NE Tel: 020 7266 3006

continuing professional development

The Psychotherapist Guild Ad. 7/8/12/2:The Psychotherapist Guild Ad 7/8/12



Page 1

Supervision Course for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapists

An innovative training from a pluralist perspective organised around 7 Saturdays from
January to July 2013. In-depth discussion of different theories of transference, ethics
and boundaries. We also explore the impact of class, culture and sexual identity in
different supervisory settings. Emphasis on developing practitioners own unique style
of work. Suitable for experienced supervisors and more recently qualified clinicians.
Leads to BAPPS (British Association of Psychoanalytic and Psychodynamic Supervision)
registration. Application closing date: 14 December 2012

Professional Training in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy

Open Day 26th January 2013
The Guild offers an established (since 1974), UKCP approved, pluralist psychoanalytic
training reflecting a spectrum of theoretical contributions. Trainees (who come from
diverse backgrounds) are introduced to the richness and diversity of psychoanalytic
perspectives on unconscious life, the sources of human distress and the psychotherapeutic
encounter. The Open Day offers an opportunity to meet with members of the Training
For further information and application
forms for all courses please contact:

Committee and former trainees and to hear about the training programme.

The Guild of Psychotherapists

Introduction to Psychoanalytic Concepts

47 Nelson Square

The Guild also offers a ten week Introduction to Psychoanalytic Concepts, on

London SE1 0QA

Wednesday evenings, beginning on 17 April 2013. This course will be of interest

t: 020 7401 3260

to health professionals and to anyone interested in psychoanalytic ideas, as well


as those considering future analytic training.

Application closing dates for training and introductory courses: Spring 2013

Professional Training in
Working with Gender and
Sexual Diversity Clients
The Society of Analytical Psychology
The Society
of Analytical Psychology
The UKs leading provider of training in Jungian analysis

The UKs leading provider of training in Jungian analysis

SAP Training and Education
We offer a modular SAP
of training
with several entry points to
and Education
our trainings
based on candidates
and interest
training in background
Jungian analysis
in Jungian analysis
of Analytical
short course
NEW Training in Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
One-year course on Supervision
Foundations of Analytical Psychology
Infant Observation seminars
NEW Jungian Process & Experiential Group
Links to post-graduate
Jungian Studies Programme, Essex
course on Supervision
Observation seminars
to post-graduate
Jungian Studies Programme, Essex
G. Jung Clinic
and Consultation Service
For further C.

Online Directory of Pink Therapists


Affordable, reduced-cost analysis for suitable applicants and a

Public Events
readily accessible Consultation
Service for those seeking
The Society runs
a number
of to
and talks
in London, Oxford
a Jungian

for those
interested in Jung, Jungian analysis and
psychotherapy. The following are some of our upcoming talks:
10th Nov The Labyrinth of Addiction (Cambridge)
Public Events
17th Nov: A Dangerours Method: Sabina Spielrein, Pioneer in
23 June: The Dark
of The Self (Cambridge)
as Patient and Analyst (Oxford)
30 Dec:
Faith in Brief
Africa (London)
7 July:
& Syndrome
The Archetypal
A further
Trauma (
Annual Lecture London)
For further information:
1 Daleham
The SAP,
1 Daleham
020 7435
020 7435 7696

The Psychotherapist

Well appointed consulting rooms in Maidstone, Kent

For suitable therapists who wish to work
as part of a group
Possible referrals

Tel: 01622 754853



continuing professional development

Work effectively and safely with children
Additional skills for UKCP Psychotherapists
Practice Based Play Therapy Programme
The only play therapy courses validated through clinical outcomes research
Post Graduate Certificate in
Therapeutic Play Skills

Post Graduate Diploma in Play


MA in Practice Based Play


Study at a therapeutically sensitive venue

near you - save travel time and costs. See
PTUK web site for details and drive times.

Central London Antrim - Barnsley - Bristol - Dublin - Edinburgh

The programme is also available as 15-day

intensive courses at our Summer School in
the South of France Jul/Aug

La Mouline Centre, 26 acres of therapeutic space, heated swimming

pool, organic food, 1 hour from Toulouse Airport, budget airline fares,
beautiful Tarnaise countryside, English speaking B&B & gites nearby

Integrative holistic approach

based Jung, Winnicott,
Rogers, Axline, Oaklander
(Gestalt), Barnes and others
includes the latest
neuroscience findings.

Huntingdon - South Devon - Manchester - Tunbridge Wells

A full tool-kit is taught

including the therapeutic use
of: art, clay, creative
visualisation, music,
movement, puppets, sand
and storytelling

Academic validation and

awards by Canterbury
Christ Church University.
Practice awards by PTUK:

The programme has been running for 10 years - over 1400 university registrants

Contact Linda Bradley:

The Academy of Play and
Child Psychotherapy (APAC)
The Coach House,
Belmont Road, Uckfield,
TN22 1 BP
Tel: 01825 761143


Newcastle & Teesside

We have the experience and

knowledge to enable you to
achieve the Child
status through the routes laid
down by UKCP for the new

Children and Young People

Training & Professional Development

Conversion Course / Post-Qualifying Diploma in Child Psychotherapy

Led by Jennie McNamara. Individual learning plans designed according to previous experience

We feature a diverse range of

training opportunities to suit
professionals at all stages of
their career from beginner to
master practitioner.

UKCP Child Psychotherapy Grandparenting Consultation with Jennie McNamara

NGP is an accrediting member

of the UKCP. Graduates are
eligible for registration with UKCP.

Child Psychotherapy Supervision

Diploma in Child Psychotherapy

Diploma in Psychotherapeutic Counselling with Children & Young People
Diploma in Creative Therapeutic Methods
Certificate and Diploma in Supervision Workshops & Summer School | | 0191 209 8383

Established 1983

UKCP Faculty for the Psychological Health of Children

Sex, lies and social networking

growing up in a technological age


Saturday 10 November 2012

Radisson Blu Edwardian Kenilworth Hotel, 97 Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3LB
In urban, rural and metropolitan areas, I have hard evidence of children being sexually
exploited. That is part of what is going on in some parts of our country. It is very sadistic.
It is very violent. It is very ugly. Sue Berelowitz Deputy Childrens Commissioner
Children and young people today
face particular challenges in the
internet age. The online generation
are growing up with access to
marvellous information, knowledge
and communication resources.
However, behind closed doors, there
is a shadowy side. The increasing
prevalence of wi-fi, smart phones
and availability of television and
games in the bedroom, has brought
with it unprecedented levels of
cyber-bullying, sexting, exposure
to violent computer games and
internet porn, often in a context that
is out of adult control.

Topics we will consider include

t Sexual exploitation of children and
young people including online
t How does exposure to internet
porn influence adolescent
t The faceless persecutor: cyberbullying and trolls
t Websites promoting suicide, selfharm and anorexia
Professionals working with children
and young people today are
confronted by these very difficult
issues. Access to experts working in

the field can facilitate an exchange

of ideas about how we can best
support young people and their
families in the face of these

Confirmed speakers
Dr. Jessica Ringrose Senior
Lecturer, Sociology of Gender and
Education - Institute of Education,
When does fun turn to risk?: Teens
digital sexual cultures and sexting
Sue Berelowitz Deputy
Childrens Commissioner

Follow the event on:

UK Council for Psychotherapy, 2nd Floor, Edward House, 2 Wakley Street, London EC1V 7LT 020 7014 9966 Registered Charity No 1058545 Company No 3258939 Registered in England

Reduced-rate insurance for UKCP members

A pioneering insurance package specifically designed for you

Balens are extremely pleased

to be working with the UKCP!
If you are a member of UKCP we can offer you professional
Liability insurance at a reduction of over 60% off Balens
normal rates. The premium for a Full Member is 33.00 a
year and a Trainee Member is 9.00 a year. Indemnity limit
is 6,000,000 per claim with an unlimited number of claims
in the year and plus unlimited defence costs are covered
in addition
Balens were established in 1950 and are an ethical 4th
Generation Family Brokerage with 40 staff and over 60,000
clients. We have been looking after Psychotherapists for over 21
years and have designed a Hybrid policy that we believe is one
of the most comprehensive on the market including important
features that some other policies may not include.

Just some of the features within the policy: 6,000,000 Professional Indemnity,
Medical Malpractice, Public &
Products Liability
Loss of Reputation, Breach of Intellectual
Property, Client Confidentiality
Protection, Loss of Documents, First Aid
Retro-active cover to pick up any
previously insured work performed
Run off cover is included for an unlimited
period if you ever stop the policy to ensure
that you are protected if a claim was made
after the policy is stopped for work done
in the policy period
100,000 Disciplinary Hearings Defence
cover/ Legal defence of your legal rights

involving Criminal Proceedings as well as

Data Protection and other legislation
cover, wrongful arrest, actions against you
for unlawful discrimination
100,000 Negotiation and representation
in event of HMRC partial or full enquiry
Wide range of free 24 hour Advice lines,
including Legal/Tax Advice
Jury or Witness Service Compensation
The policy covers you to work anywhere
in the UK as well as temporary cover for
work abroad with no time restrictions
Expert claims handling
No extra charges for replacement
certificates/changes to your policy


Specialist Insurance Brokers

Offering you one

of the widest
Insurance covers
available in the UK
with competitive
premiums to match!

Full Member
33.00 per year
Trainee Member
9.00 per year
Indemnity limit 6m

For more information about reduced rate insurance for UKCP members, please visit...
Telephone: 01684 580 771 Email:
Balens and H&L Balen & Co. are Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Services Authority

Caring for
the carers