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Gotthold, J.J. (2007). “Do You Believe in Magic?” Articulating a Coconstructed Dynamic Systems Approach to a Child Treatment: A Discussion of Hilke's “Miss Nicht”. Int. J. Psychoanal. Self Psychol., 2(2):209-217.

(2007). International Journal of Psychoanalytic Self Psychology, 2(2):209-217

“Do You Believe in Magic?” Articulating a Coconstructed Dynamic Systems Approach to a Child Treatment: A Discussion of Hilke's “Miss Nicht”

Jacqueline J. Gotthold, PSY.D

As adults who connect with the worlds of children, we must have some degree of fancy for magic; yet, we know the child treatment process is not magic. Articulating the dimensions of the coconstructed, nonlinear, dynamic, dyadic nature of the patient-analyst relationship is a task of both adult and child therapists. In this discussion, some of the dimensions of the child treatment process are explored in terms of the coconstructed nature of the treatment relationship and the nonverbal dimensions of the treatment process. These dimensions of the treatment process are considered from the perspective of child treatment and understood in terms of their contribution to our work with adults. Facilitating this exploration is a discussion of Dr. Iris Hilke's case of Miss Nicht, which is examined from 2 perspectives: (a) the verbal and nonverbal dimensions of the treatment process as it impacts both the adult and child process, and (b) the issues regarding self and interactive regulation within the dyad. In formulating a dyadic systems theory of interactions (Beebe and Lachmann, 2002), a dual focus emerges where self and interactive regulatory processes share center stage with an increased awareness and appreciation of the implicit and explicit dimensions of communication.

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