Transformations in Love: Bion and Couple Therapy

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Organised by:

Tavistock Relationships

06 November 2021

Time: 10:00 - 13:00

Price: £40 (£35 if booked and paid for by 25 September 2021)

Location: online


Using Bion’s love life to explore the relevance of his life-work to couple-work, this seminar applies his clinical thinking to the area of psychoanalytic psychotherapy with couples. So much of Bion’s oeuvre is relevant to psychoanalytic work with couples, such as container-contained, analytic reverie, alpha function, at-one-ment, emotional links of K H and L, Bion’s negative epistemology, and transformations in O.

We will see how transformations in O are transformations in love and how finding fulfilment of our deepest potentialities takes place within the crucible of relationship. Becoming who we are is a becoming in and through love. We uncover our truest nature and become most authentically real through the difficult and fearful, yet transformative intersubjective crucibles of our intimate relationships. Yet numerous psychological obstacles obstruct such realisation. We will show how couple therapy may enable a couple to work through such obstacles, freeing them to experience transformations in O through love: just as Bion did through his relationship with Francesca.

The seminar also focuses on the vital role of negative epistemology in couple work. Bion’s contribution to such negative epistemology includes his writings on the K link, the psychoanalytic application of Keats’s concept of negative capability, and Henri Poincaré’s selected fact. The paper also describes the interlocking traumatic scene and the conjoint selected fact.

Liberally illustrated with clinical material, this seminar charts the difficult psychological terrain leading towards becoming O in and through love.

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