“Ghosts in The Nursery” with Stephen Seligman, DMHBook tickets
The Bowlby Centre
“GHOSTS IN THE NURSERY” ADAPTING INFANT-PARENT PSYCHOTHERAPY TO DIVERSE POPULATIONS TO DIMINISH THE INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION OF TRAUMA
With Stephen Seligman, DMH
Saturday, 10 June 2023
Venue: The Resource for London
1.00pm – 5.00pm
Until relatively recently, psychotherapists have been limited in their ability to help infants, since we usually rely on words or play. Selma Fraiberg and her colleagues proposed their original model of infant-parent psychotherapy to fill this gap, taking the parent-infant relationship as the pathway to help the baby. To begin with, the traditional conception of transference was modified and applied to how parents project their childhood traumas onto their babies –“the ghosts in the nursery.” This traditional psychoanalytic orientation combined with direct support and non-didactic developmental guidance, a way of engaging parents’ positive interest in their babies–without the putting them in the position of feeling inferior or humiliated by unsolicited advice. The careful development of a working alliance was stressed, and home visiting became the most common intervention format. Work with infant-parent dyads offers special possibilities for therapeutic progress: The overall emphasis is to enhance whatever potentials for progressive development can emerge in the family and its members, while interrupting destructive dynamics that would otherwise take hold.
This presentation provides an overview of current developments in the model’s core intervention techniques. As the original infant-parent psychotherapy model and the infant mental health movement have expanded, new groups have been reached: system-involved families, including those with infants and young children in foster care; culturally and economically disadvantaged families—including people of color, those living in poverty, recent immigrants, etc; and neurodiverse populations.
A conceptual-clinical framework will be offered, along with case presentations and video vignettes. Audience questions and discussion will be encouraged.
ABOUT STEPHEN SELIGMAN, DMH
Dr Stephen Seligman, D.M.H. is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco; Editor Emeritus of Psychoanalytic Dialogues; Training and Supervising Analyst at the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California; and Clinical Professor at the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychoanalysis. Dr. Seligman has recently authored Relationships in Development: Infancy, Intersubjectivity, Attachment(Routledge), and is co-editor of the American Psychiatric Press’ Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health: Core Concepts and Clinical Practice.
1.00pm Arrival and refreshments
1.30pm Introduction and housekeeping
1.35pm Dr Seligman – session 1
3.00pm Dr Seligman – session 2
3.45pm Questions (longer session)
4.15pm Chair’s reflections and thanks
4.30pm Book signing reception
Bowlby members: £60
Non-Bowlby students: £35
Bowlby students: £25