1st Friday of every month from 1:10-2:40pm
3000 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 214
Washington, DC 20008

The challenges of working with couples will be explored through readings that draw from self psychology, attachment theory, intersubjectivity and relational theories, neuroscience, as well as clinical discussion. Topics will include working with oppositional couples, countertransference dilemmas, sexual issues, infidelity, loss and blended families. Additional topics will be determined by the interests of group participants.  Group members should be actively working with couples.

Members who attend this study group will be able to:

  1. Discuss the application of self psychological and relational concepts in couples’ therapy.
  2. Describe how the couple’s therapist can help partners serve self-object functions for each other.
  3. Identify ways to help couples work toward a healthier, more secure attachment.
  4. Describe how early attachment wounds are manifested in different attachment styles.
  5. Discuss the concept of neuroplasticity and its relevance to relational dynamics.
  6. Identify two therapeutic techniques using the concept of neuroplasticity to help couples move beyond self-defeating relational patterns.
  7. Identify techniques to sustain empathy with each individual in the couple.
  8. Identify how to utilize the therapist’s countertransference reactions in clinical work with couples.
  9. Discuss ideas about the fluidity and multidimensionality of sex and gender in working with sexual issues.
  10. Identify two techniques in working with couples around sexual issues that incorporate Suzanne Iasenza’s ideas about sex and gender.