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The Relational Challenges Of Love And Sexuality In The Consulting Room – With Paul Renn (May 2018)

The Relational Challenges of Love and Sexuality in the Consulting Room – with Paul Renn (May 2018)

I had been looking forward to this seminar for some time. I am an integrative counsellor who has a special interest in an object relations approach. For me, the nuances of relationship in the consulting room and keeping a systemic eye (and ear) on the client’s more general way of positioning self and other can be hugely illuminating. So I arrived at this seminar with great anticipation.

It took place over half a day, and perhaps might have benefited from longer time being given to what was exploring, really, quite a complex set of theory and its practical application.

The seminar consisted of Paul reading aloud three papers and brief discussion around this. The first paper considered the theory historically around the development of attachment and love and how this theoretical body has altered as it’s evolved. This is a hugely complex journey and well worth the concentration it demanded. I was really pleased to have been emailed a copy of this paper- and the others- after the seminar to review at my leisure.

From the film “A Dangerous Method”

The second paper positioned the theory, discussed in the first paper, squarely in the consulting room, exploring how this might be experienced by the counsellor. It was helpful to think about our anxiety as therapists, potential boundary issues and the ethical dilemmas around this and to hear Paul read about how “the ‘take no risks’ approach may, therefore, end up breaching the ‘do no harm’ injunction.” I use this quotation from the paper Paul read to exemplify the sense that this is a complex set of issues, and it was valuable to explore it in detail.

The third paper Paul read from was a case history of his, and contextualised the previous two papers clearly and vividly within the therapeutic framework and working alliance. It was fascinating to look more closely at what seemed to be a challenging moment relationally and how best to hold what might be going on for the client.

I took a lot from this seminar, and I am really pleased to have had the opportunity to have explored these testing issues in this way. I only wish that time had permitted a more experiential approach to what was, after all, founded in relationality. I would welcome the chance to revisit this seminar in this way at a later date.

By: Merri Mayers (delegate – Merri Mayers Counselling)
May 2018

View original event flyer

Feedback from participants:

“Warm and informative”
“Relaxed and intimate atmosphere and setting” – C Bennett
“Interesting seminar, good spacious venue” – Cheryl, Bishopstone
“I liked the interaction and responses to questions, lots of variety of appraoaches covered and helpfully linked”

Average feedback scores from 12 delegates:

Organisation of event: 4.83 out of 5
Speaker (Paul Renn): 4.17 out of 5

Thank you to everyone who attended for your feedback.

Wendy Bramham
June 2018

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