An impasse is “a road with no outlet”, essentially a blind alley. It refers to a common feature in many treatments that, when not worked through, can lead to prolonged stalemates, often with the patient leaving prematurely or being unable to move toward a meaningful termination. Just as both therapist and patient play a role in creating and then perpetuating the impasse, each also feels thwarted, blaming the other for not seeing their point of view. Distinguishing an impasse from long periods of a treatment characterized by a negative, devaluing transference and strong negative countertransference feelings is often possible only in retrospect, since the most salient features—namely, an entrenched transference/countertransference standstill, along with enactments by both parties—can look very similar.
In this seminar, we will look at what is involved in the creation of an impasse. We will also examine what enables the therapist and the patient to become aware of it and confront the uncomfortable reality of being stuck, with no forward movement or real change. It is this predicament that becomes the subject of ongoing inquiry.
In this seminar, we will have the opportunity to think more deeply about the impasse; its development, dynamics and potential pathways towards its resolution.
Jules Owen, SJD, LP, a senior candidate at the CFS, will present case material.
Ann Rudovsky, LCSW, a member on the faculty at the CFS, is also a training and supervising analyst.
At the end of this seminar, participants will have learned to do the following:
1) identify at least two characteristics of a clincal impasse
2) discuss possible transference and countertransference dimensions of an impasse
3) describe a strategy for working with an impasse in a clinical situation.
Who should attend
The instructional level for this activity is advanced. Mental Health Professionals (psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, licensed professional counselors, e.g. LPs, LCATs, and pastoral counselors) and those with an interest in psychodynamic and psychoanalytic thinking and clinical applications.
CFS Members $40
Non-CFS Members $40
Candidates and Students with Valid ID $25
For further information regarding this seminar, please contact Connie Stroboulis (email@example.com).