How the psychoanalytic approach requires a different approach to the understanding of boundaries

Organised by:

West Midlands Institute of Psychotherapy

10 June 2023

Time: 10:15 - 12:45

Price: £60.00 if attending in person and £55.00 if attending via Zoom. A discount of 50% is offered to trainee psychotherapists and other full-time trainees (proof of student/trainee membership is required)


Woodbrooke Conference Centre
1046 Bristol Road
United Kingdom
B29 6LJ

Map of address


Please note that this is a hybrid event and will also be available on Zoom.

In this talk, Stokoe will argue that the nature of boundaries in a psychoanalytic treatment requires a unique approach to ethics and the management of complaints. They are not ‘things’ that exist independently of the activities of the working couple, they are part of the engagement of that couple. In fact, they act to stimulate conflict. Perhaps it is truer to say that they are not concrete ‘rules’ that prescribe the behaviour of the participants, as in a legal contract; they are emotional and psychological material that can be stretched and distorted so as to reveal unconscious information. The skill of the therapist and the therapeutic institution is to maintain a psychological balance that allows these apparent rules to be broken without ever completely losing the Hippocratic commitment to do no harm.

Philip Stokoe is a Psychoanalyst in private practice working with adults and couples, and an Organisational Consultant, providing consultation to a wide range of organisations. He worked in the Adult Department of the Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Trust between 1994 and 2012, he was the Clinical Director from 2007. Philip is a member of the European Psychoanalytic Federation Forum on Institutional Matters, which studies the nature of psychoanalytic institutions. Philip’s book, The Curiosity Drive: Our Need for Inquisitive Thinking, was published by Phoenix Publishing House in November 2020 and shortlisted for the Gradiva® Award for Best Psychoanalytic Book in 2021.

To book, email



Find out more about upcoming events.
Read more