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 can look very similar in both situations.
In this seminar, the second that we present on the impasse, we will once again use clinical material to think more deeply about impasses in our work; how they might arise, their dynamics—the entrenched transference/countertransference standstill, the role of projective identification, and of sadomasochism—and ways in which impasses might be engaged and resolved by making the impasse itself the subject of analytic inquiry.
Jules Owen, SJD, LP, a senior candidate at the CFS, will present case material.
Ann Rudovsky, LCSW, is a faculty member and training and supervising analyst at the CFS.
At the end of this seminar, participants will be able to:
1) Identify at least two characteristics of a clinical 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 $50
Candidates and Students with Valid ID $25
For further information regarding this course, please contact Connie Stroboulis at ConnieS3@aol.com or 732-446-4867.