How do clients with a label experience psychotherapy and counselling?

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PHILADELPHIA ASSOCIATION

4 Marty's Yard

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NW3 1QW

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https://criticalpsychotherapy.wordpress.com

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The Critical Psychotherapy Network First Annual Conference: Challenging Psychotherapeutic, Psychoanalytic and Counselling Norms in the Era of managed Care

Attendance counts as 5 hours CPD requirement met

Clients with a label: What are their experiences of psychotherapy, psychoanalysis and counselling?

The user movement, amongst others, has been critical of psychiatry including its prioritising of the medical model. But can psychotherapy, if sometimes more subtly, also be unhelpful or even damaging? This conference considers two research projects into the experiences of psychotherapy of people who have previously been assigned psychiatric labels. In the light of these important findings and concerns expressed about the potential harmfulness of medical and other psychotherapeutic frameworks, the conference will focus on participants’ experiences of receiving and/or providing therapy. The aim is for us to be clearer as to what psychotherapeutic approaches are helpful or unhelpful when working with clients, with particular reference to those who have a label.

Prof Del Loewenthal, Chair Critical Psychotherapy Network, on behalf of CPN Conference Steering Committee

9.30am - 10.00am - Registration

10.00am - 10.20am - Welcome and introduction to the conference, Del Loewenthal - Conference Chair

10.20am - 11.00am - In what ways, if any, do people diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia’ perceive their label as having affected their personal therapy, Elizabeth Nicholl (Southern Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) - Chair, Sally Parsloe

11.00am - 11.30am - Coffee

11.30am- 12.10pm - An exploration of the psychotherapeutic experiences of those who have a ‚schizophrenia‘ diagnosis (includes film There is a Fault in Reality), Tom Cotton (Southern Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) - Chair, Sacha Lawrence

12.10pm – 12.30pm - Agreeing questions to explore and ways of exploring them as a community, Del Loewenthal (Critical Psychotherapy Network)

12.30pm – 2.00pm - Lunch (not provided – potential various local eating places to continue preparing for afternoon sessions)

2.00pm – 2.40pm - Dropping The Disorder! – Challenging the medicalisation of emotional distress in counselling, psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, Jo Watson (Drop the Disorder) - Chair, Susan Tilley

2.40pm – 4.00pm - Community exploration: Helpful and unhelpful experiences of receiving and of giving psychotherapy/ counselling/ psychoanalysis with particular reference to clients who are assigned a psychiatric label.

4.00pm - Tea and End of Conference

Presenters’ abstracts and bios

Tom Cotton: An exploration of the experiences of those who have a 'schizophrenia‘ diagnosis (the presentation centres on a film directed by Tom: There is a Fault in Reality)

The scientific literature attempting to explain schizophrenia is vast – yet very little of it is based on the meaning people with the diagnosis make of their experiences. Tom’s PsychD research focussed on this problem, and one aspect of his work was to make a 30-minute documentary film on the subject, There is a Fault in Reality, whose production was funded the Wellcome Trust and Media. This presentation will centre on a screening of the film, which features personals view of ‘schizophrenia’ told from 3 people’s perspectives, and explores how the voices and hallucinations they experience have meaningful identities that are anything but ‘mad.’ The screening is followed by a short Q&A with Tom.

Tom Cotton is a psychotherapist and filmmaker with a special interest in the tension between medical and personal discourses surrounding schizophrenia, and the implication for treatment. Tom studied Fine Art Film at Central St Martins School of Art and worked as a writer and director in the film industry before gaining his MSc and PsychD degrees in Psychotherapy and Counselling from Roehampton University in 2008 and 2016. He managed a residential therapeutic community for clients with a schizophrenia diagnosis between 2010 and 2012. Alongside his psychotherapy practice, Tom also works as an organisational consultant and executive coach.

Del Loewenthal: Welcome and introduction to the conference

(See conference brief above)

Del Loewenthal is Chair of the Critical Psychotherapy Network (criticalpsychotherapy.wordpress.com/) and the Southern Association for Psychotherapy and Counselling (www.safpac.co.uk/). He is also on the faculty of the Philadelphia Association, Emeritus Professor of Psychotherapy and Counselling at the University of Roehampton and an existential-analytic psychotherapist. His books include: Post-existentialism and the Psychological Therapies (2011, Karnac), Critical Psychotherapy, Psychoanalysis and Counselling: Implications for practice (2015, Palgrave Macmillan); with Gillian Proctor, Why Not CBT: Against and For CBT 2nd Edition (2018, PCCS Books). He is also founding editor of the European Journal of Psychotherapy and Counselling (Routledge) (www.delloewenthal.com).

Elizabeth Nicholl: In what ways, if any, do people diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia’ perceive their label as having affected their personal therapy

Clients with a diagnosis of ‘schizophrenia’ can often struggle to find a therapist with whom they can work; when clients find that their therapy has not been helpful the perceived issues have been around how their therapist has responded to this diagnosis. Often, the client might perceive a reluctance on the part of the therapist to really engage with them. Even with those therapists who profess themselves keen to work with someone with a diagnosis of ‘schizophrenia’ the client may feel that the therapist’s agenda is dictating the content and process of the therapy. This can be interpreted in a variety of ways, such as the belief that the therapist is fearful of the label and that they make assumptions about the client’s experiencing. These issues will be explored in this presentation through the presenter’s personal experiences in therapy as well as those of her participants in her PhD research.

Elizabeth Nicholl is a psychotherapist in private practice in Dorset and Wiltshire and a member of the Southern Association for Psychotherapy and Counselling (SAFPAC). She is also a lecturer and programme manager on the Counselling Diploma at Guildford College. Elizabeth has recently completed her PhD thesis, having studied at the Research Centre for Therapeutic Education, University of Roehampton.

Jo Watson: Dropping The Disorder! – Challenging the medicalisation of emotional distress in counselling, psychotherapy and psychoanalysis

As counsellors and psychotherapists surely we know that emotional distress is related to what one has experienced. In her presentation Jo will talk about the narrative of diagnosis and disorder that she argues has crept in to counselling and psychotherapy and she will suggest that this collusion with the medical model has served to obscure the stories of individuals by offering ‘explanations’ of illness & disorder. Jo will share how she has personally experienced moving from feeling isolated and hopeless about all of the above to feeling part of a massive movement for change. She will tell her story about how joining with allies in activism was the only congruent way forward for her personally, politically and professionally and ask delegates to consider whether the same could potentially apply to them.

Jo Watson actively challenges the biomedical model of ‘mental health’ and believes that emotional distress is caused primarily by what is experienced as such she is committed to promoting a trauma informed philosophy which rejects the illness model. Jo is the organiser of ‘A Disorder for Everyone!’ – an event touring the U.K challenging the biomedical model (www.adisorder4everyone.com). She is founder of the Facebook group ‘Drop the Disorder’, a Mad in the UK team member (www.madintheuk.com) and a founding member of United for Integrity in Mental Health which is to be launched later this year. Jo presently represents United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) on a steering committee for the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Prescribed Drug Dependence. Jo is the editor of the book “Drop the Disorder’ – Challenging the Culture of Psychiatric Diagnosis and exploring Trauma Informed Alternatives (PCCS Books, forthcoming).

Date and Time

Location

PHILADELPHIA ASSOCIATION

4 Marty's Yard

London

NW3 1QW

United Kingdom

View Map

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 7 days before event

Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

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