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Dr. Phillip Ringstrom-A Relational Psychoanalytic Approach to Couples Psychotherapy
May 30, 2015 @ 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
6 CE credits
McNeely Hall, Room 100
MN Board of Social Work CE Provider Approval Number: CEP-691
MN Board of Marriage and Family Therapy Board Approval Number: CE:2015-065
MN Board of Psychology: Board Log Number: 201503.247
The content of this conference grows out of Dr. Ringstrom’s recent publication, A Relational Psychoanalytic Approach to Couples Psychotherapy. The presentation will involve the illumination of three theoretical themes illustrated in six steps of clinical steps followed by rich interaction with the audience during Q&A.
This conference is based on Dr. Ringstrom’s new textbook A Relational Psychoanalytic Approach to Couples Psychotherapy. His presentation begins with three broad themes that orchestrate his overview of working with couples and that is the achievement of: 1) the actualization of self experience in an intimate relationship, 2) the capacity for mutual recognition, and 3) the “relationship having a mind of its own”. His model articulates Six Steps in which these themes are achieved that wed theory and practice. The first step begins with the importance of the therapist’s attunement to each partners’ bi-dimensional transference along with pointing out the couple’s “vicious circle” engagements that arise from each partner’s selfobject, developmental longings triggering one another’s states of repetitive/resistive transference. Second, the model focuses on the partners’ unique subjective experiences underscored in terms of the epistemological stance of “perspectival realism.” Third, the partners’ perspectives are then contextualized in terms of the impact of their developmental backgrounds (including issues of gender and culture among others). Fourth, where attunement is insufficient, enactments emerge from dissociated self-states finally making them available for examination. The fifth and sixth steps take up what is both negotiable and nonnegotiable within the partners as well as within their relationship. Ultimately, termination is in evidence to the degree that the couple has internalized the functions of the overall model. It is noted that the Six Steps do not operate in a fixed linear manner rather they function non-linearly working as practice guidelines rather than stepwise rules for the practitioner to follow.
To learn about how the three organizing themes: self-actualization in an intimate relationship, mutual recognition, and the “relationship having a mind of its own” bridge important elements of contemporary psychoanalysis, namely self-experiencing in a complex nonlinear system lending to the principle of “thirdness” in long-term intimate relationships – marital and otherwise.
To learn how these three themes are practiced in terms of the model’s six steps.
To investigate modifications in psychoanalytic technique in conjoint therapy in light of this perspective shift.
To understand why and where attunement is insufficient and therefore enactments emerge.
To appreciate the place of dissociated self-states that must be reconciled for each partner to own their own conflict.
To determine what can be negotiated in terms of conflicts within each partner as well as between and what might have to be surrendered.
To understand how accomplishing the above results from turning binaries of dominance and submission into the “thirdness” of intersubjective mutual recognition.
To discern both the advantages and limitations that may arise from this perspective.