Developing psychotherapeutic approaches for couples where one partner has dementia

Book tickets

Organised by:

British Psychotherapy Foundation

04 February 2023

Time: 11:00 - 12:30

Price: £25.00

Location: online


Andrew Balfour writes: “Working in hospital settings with older adults in the early 1990s, where there was little place for thinking about the meaning of the behaviour and communications of people with dementia – and very little public discussion of dementia – highlighted for me the relevance of a psychoanalytic approach which seeks to understand more extreme and primitive anxieties.” In his presentation, Andrew will emphasise the value of the act of seeking to understand, and of containment, in dementia, where the capacity to think and to understand is being lost, and how difficult that search for understanding may be for formal care staff or for partners in relationships of many year’s standing.

He will outline the development of an intervention for couples, which, though rooted in psychoanalytic thinking, looks unlike anything one might recognise as ‘psychoanalysis’ as it focuses on everyday activities, and uses video, with the aim of creating the conditions for emotional contact and for reflection on the interaction and communication between partners in couples living with dementia.

About the speaker:

Andrew Balfour is Chief Executive of Tavistock Relationships. He originally trained as a clinical psychologist at UCL and then as an adult psychotherapist at the Tavistock & Portman NHS Trust, where he worked for many years. He also trained as a couple psychotherapist at Tavistock Relationships, where for more than 10 years he was Clinical Director before becoming Chief Executive.

Yes. 1.5 hours.

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