Topic: The impact of dissociation on the therapeutic relationship between client and therapist.
This essay requires contemporary theorists in Psychotherapy on the subject of dissociation like: Bromberg, Beebe , Bowlby, Messler & Frawley and others…..In the essay i require to demonstrate my understanding and learning of the subject of dissociation with clinical examples of dialogue/communication with my client in a counselling session. I will add these excerpts later to the essay. The practice parts of this essay or examples of my work with a client has themes: My clients dissociation presents itself in 2 ways non- verbal and verbal. Non – verbal my clients behaviour is to avoid eye contact and look at the floor, particularly when we discuss the subject of relationships, intimacy and our relationship as client and therapist. This behaviour is linked to an early childhood insecure attachment to mother, and at times his mother abandoned him, as an adult he shows signs of having an insecure avoidant attachment style. His verbal way of avoidant dissociation is to talk incessantly without pause or time to reflect or allow me to come in and connect with him. It is very important to bring into my essay my initial responses to my clients dissociation as being unhelpful. Examples of my unhelpful responses were: lack of atunement or respect for his dissociation has been used through his life to cope when feeling unsafe, ashamed or uncomfortable and have been a useful defence mechanism. My frustration with not being able to connect with my client resulted in my own dissociation from my clients needs and instead of pacing our relationship and building a safe and trusting relationship, i began aggressively probing my client with consistent questioning. Another example of my lack of attunement with my client began with my mind drifting off and going elsewhere, particularly during him consistently talking without breath. The essay requires to move on through a journey of my awareness of how to become attuned with my client and respecting where he is. I achieved this through my reading, supervision and personal therapy. I learned to change to a relational approach, in building a trusting relationship between us to be the primary goal and once achieved we could gently address the blocks in our communicating comfortably and honestly, moving to an intersubjective sharing.Please use contemporary theorists who i previously mentioned to use as a theoretical back up and validation to the impact of dissociation on my client and myself in our therapeutic relationship. Thank you