2015 Annual Conference

The Many Faces of Eros: Countertransference Revelations

with Andrea Celenza, PhD


Check out the recap of the conference and slides from it

Georgetown University Conference Center
3800 Reservoir Rd, NW
Washington, DC 20057

This program was held on Saturday, May 2, 2015,  9:00 AM – ­4:30 PM

There are perhaps no feelings more ubiquitous than sexual desire, yet their manifestation within the therapeutic dyad typically creates profound feelings of discomfort for therapist and patient alike. Dr. Andrea Celenza, a psychoanalyst who has written and lectured widely on the topic of erotic transference and countertransference, will speak at this year’s Annual Conference.

Dr. Celenza argues that recent psychoanalytic theories have become largely desexualized, leaving clinicians unprepared to address sexual phenomena. It is vital, she contends, that clinicians recognize that some form of erotic transferences will make their way into every intensive treatment.

She will discuss the varieties and meanings of the therapist’s countertransference to romantic and erotic material as it emerges over the course of the treatment process. She will also examine a range of erotic transferences from the therapist’s point of view and demonstrate how countertransference experiences aid therapists in understanding unconscious factors in their patients’ experience.

This conference aims to address these challenging and complex feelings and to encourage more open discussion about erotic transference and countertransference in a multiplicity of manifestations.

In addition to the talk by Dr. Celenza, we will break out into groups for discussion, and there will be a segment in which members share vignettes and Dr. Celenza responds.

Here is the schedule for the day:

8:30    Registration
9:00    Introduction: Bill Pinney, PhD
9:15    Presentation Part I: Andrea Celenza, PhD
10:30  Break
10:45  Small Group Discussions
12:00  Lunch (included)
1:30    Presentation Part II: Andrea Celenza, PhD
2:15    Break
2:30    Case Vignettes: John Gershefski, PhD, moderator
4:00    Conference Summary/Large Group Discussion: Leslie Smith, MSW, facilitator
4:30    Conference ends


Andrea Celenza, PhD is a Training and Supervising Analyst at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, Faculty at the Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis and an Assistant Clinical Professor at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Celenza has consulted with, evaluated, supervised or treated over 250 cases of therapist-patient sexual boundary transgressions. She has authored and presented numerous papers on the evaluation and treatment of therapists who have engaged in sexual misconduct with a focus on training and supervisory issues. She has been the recipient of several awards, including the Karl A. Menninger Memorial Award, the Felix & Helena Deutsch Prize and the Symonds Prize. She just completed a new book: Erotic Revelations: Clinical Applications and Perverse Scenarios, published by Routledge. She is in private practice in Lexington, Massachusetts.

 Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this program, participants will be able to:

  1. Explore the ways in which the analyst’s countertransference can foster or inhibit the emergence of the full intensity of erotic transferences at different phases of the treatment.
  2. Identify and explore aspects of erotic transferences and countertransferences, especially as these relate to the multiple meanings underlying erotic transferences as a defensive structure.
  3. Acquire greater comfort in the identification and exploration of their own countertransference, especially as it leans erotic.
  4. Discuss how therapists’ attention to erotic content in the transference and countertransference can illuminate sexual issues.
  5. Describe ways to interpret erotic transference and countertransference in therapy sessions.
  6. Articulate various forms of therapeutic interventions for addressing erotic transferences in treatment sessions.

This conference is intended for professionals at all levels of experience.

Conference Committee: Jen Sermoneta, PsyD, ICP+P Associate Director for Programs; Bill Pinney, PhD, Conference Chair; John Gershefski, PhD; Laura Kasper, PhD; Roger Segalla, PhD; and Leslie Smith, MSW.

Continuing Education Credits

6 CE credits available for full attendance. The Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis (ICP+P) maintains responsibility for this program and its content. ICP+P is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. ICP+P is approved by the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners to offer Category I continuing education credit. Because ICP+P has approval from the Maryland Board, CE credit hours awarded by ICP+P may also be claimed by social workers licensed in Virginia and the District of Columbia. These continuing education credits meet the ANCC approval standards for nurses and the approved standards for marriage and family therapists. Attendees from the above professional groups will earn 6 CE credits for attending the conference. Full attendance is required to receive the designated CE credit. ICP+P is accredited by MedChi, the Maryland State Medical Society to provide continuing medical education for physicians. ICP+P designates this educational activity for a maximum of 6 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


Fees: $190 for ICP+P members,  $215 for Non-members,  $95 for students.

Lunch is included.

Limited scholarship opportunities are available: contact administrator@icpeast.org


Register online and pay by credit card at Eventbrite
Pay by check and mail in the registration form.

Andrea Celenza, Ph.D. has informed us that she does not have a conflict of interest and has disclosed that she has no relevant financial relationship with any commercial interests pertaining to this educational activity. Additionally, the presenter has been instructed to disclose any limitations of data and unlabeled or investigational uses of products during this presentation. This presentation will not contain any references to off ­label (non­ FDA approved) use of products or devices.