Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy

Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy is often associated exclusively with Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) – the father of the Psychoanalytic movement. Freud developed a theory of the structure of the mind that allowed for the idea of an unconscious and acknowledged how we are driven in powerful and primitive ways.

Since Freud’s pioneering work many new theories and theorists have further developed this model of understanding the human mind, emotions and relationships. In the last 50 years psychoanalysis has branched in many directions with different developments integrating with other disciplines in fields of science and arts, exploring, for e.g. how we are formed by our relationships, language and social context. Contemporary psychoanalysts in general have moved away from a traditional approach that might have only focussed on the patient’s unconscious and ignored their social realities.

My own approach draws from different ideas within this, surprisingly, broad field. How and when I use different theoretical ideas will vary accordingly. My training as a group analytic psychotherapist means I also believe we are not only shaped by, but develop out of, our social contexts. This approach emphasises the individual’s early experiences of groups, especially their family, to help understand who they are and who they have the potential to become.

In my work, I emphasise the relationship that develops between myself and the patient. We focus beyond what is consciously ‘known’ and speculate about hidden and problematic dynamics of their internal world. At the same time I am curious to know about all aspects of my patients’ experiences and the relationship between their internal and external realities.