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Salomonsson, B. (2020). Psychoanalysis with adults inspired by parent–infant therapy: Reconstructing infantile trauma. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 101(2):320-339.

(2020). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 101(2):320-339


Psychoanalysis with adults inspired by parent–infant therapy: Reconstructing infantile trauma

Björn Salomonsson

This the first in a series of articles on how Psychodynamic Therapy with Infants and Parents (PTIP) can inspire work with adult therapy. PTIP helps infants and parents improve their relationship and facilitate child development. During sessions, developmental hazards are dramatized by parent and baby, giving the therapist first-hand impressions of how conflictual relationships impact on the well-being of mother and child. This article argues that PTIP experiences may also inspire analytic work with adult patients. (1) It gives the analyst a foothold when reconstructing a patient’s infantile trauma and linking it with his/her present distress. (2) It deepens his/her attention on primitive anxieties, para-verbal communication and psychosomatic functioning. (3) PTIP experiences with high-speed interchanges between container and contained, personified by baby and parent, seem to induce more internal images and metaphors in adult work as well. (4) Working with two patients simultaneously means the analyst’s position resembles that of a couple therapist or a participant observer of the traffic between container and contained. This can make him/her more agile in dealing with corresponding movements between him/herself and the patient. The present article focuses on (1), reconstructive work in adult work inspired by PTIP experiences.

[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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