THERAPY WITH PERSONALITY DISORDER PATIENTS
A psychoanalytic approach with the inclusion of elements of mentalisation-based therapy as well as schema therapy, has proven to be the most favourable for therapeutic work with personality disorder patients, or individuals who experience complex psychological suffering.
APPROACH AND OBJECTIVE
- We understand mental disorders and disease symptoms as indicators. These suggest deep emotional conflict which can manifest itself as inner emptiness, psychological constriction or fixation, emotional chaos, or disruptive behaviour. It is usually the patient’s peers who suggest to them that they are off-base, straining, or unreliable and distant. In such cases relationships (work, personal or other) can only last for a brief period of time, or not at all.
- The therapy focuses on enhancing competence in mentalisation, i.e. increasing the understanding of what occurs within oneself, as well as in relation to the other person(s) involved. This not only helps one to relax and calm oneself but also to better understand others, even in the most difficult situations and emotional states. Schema therapeutic concepts also help in integrating conflicting emotions and impulses.
- Ultimately, our goal is to connect and balance the different sides of one’s self and one’s life, so that they are able to enjoy a free, positively intense life, with enriching and rewarding relationships.
- The initial consultation, usually a double session of 90 minutes, is chargeable but non-binding.
- In case of continued interest, one to two additional sessions will be dedicated to setting the therapeutic frame and formulating the therapy objectives more precisely.
- Then, sessions will take place at the best possible pace. Previous agreement on a set number of sessions with scheduled progress assessments is usually beneficial.
THERAPY CONCLUSION AND THERAPY TERMINATION
- Patients can terminate the therapy at any time. In such a cases, it is advisable for the patient to discuss, in a closing session, his or her reasons for doing so with the therapist, which could be due to, for example uncertainty, criticism or injury. This is intended to definitely conclude the therapy, and not for the patient to be persuaded to continue; the aim consists of fully understanding and clarifying the therapist/patient relationship.
- Therapists are obligated to welcome feedback openly and, as it is in their own professional interest, to take it seriously. Therapists will look for an alternative and suitable path for their patients. This can also mean that they may suggest a different, and possibly better suited, professional.