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Gerrard, J. (2020). The Vicissitudes of a Training Therapy. Brit. J. Psychother., 36(2):248-259.

(2020). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 36(2):248-259

The Vicissitudes of a Training Therapy

Jackie Gerrard

The author has given an account of a training therapy with a patient who had a very tenuous start in life, having spent three months in an incubator in a neonatal unit, where she suffered life-threatening conditions and complications. Various difficulties, which can be particularly relevant to a training therapy, are described - in particular narcissistic issues on the part of the therapist, such as the wish for the trainee's success and the consequent pride in what can feel like a joint achievement. However, issues of identification and envy can also be very relevant to this particular work and some clinical examples have been cited. Furthermore, the author has highlighted the particular difficulties of publishing clinical material regarding patients, especially so with reference to training patients, where ethical issues require special consideration. The purpose of this paper lies in an effort to identify the rewards and pitfalls of working intensively with a trainee who is undergoing a psycho-dynamically based training. It also explores the complexities in publication, even when the patient specifically requests to be written about.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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