62 Slices
Medium 9781782205050

Chapter Nine: Responses to Trauma, Enactments of Trauma: The Psychodynamics of an Intellectually Disabled Family

Karnac Books ePub

Richard Curen


The forensic field is one that covers a multitude of sins. Due to the structures of the criminal justice and mental health systems, and to the way in which these systems often fail spectacularly to act, the forensic patient with intellectual disabilities rarely fits neatly into the frame. Fortunately, over the last twenty-five years forensic psychotherapy has emerged as a discipline that provides us with critical tools and with profound new ways of understanding perversion, offending, and complex psychopathologies. And under the tutelage and guiding force of Estela Welldon and her pioneering work, the efforts of clinicians engaged at the margins, especially those treating people with intellectual disabilities, have become more possible, and the lives of such patients and their families have, as a result, been vastly improved.

I work at a voluntary sector organisation called Respond. Based in Central London, it provides assessment and treatment for young people and adults with intellectual disabilities or autism who have committed sexual, as well as other, offences. I have worked at Respond since 2002, and my colleagues and I are grateful that Welldon's groundbreaking theories have become a veritable cornerstone in the application and thinking that underpins the organisation's approach to perversion, trauma, and violence.

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Medium 9781855751361

CHAPTER ONE. Infancy and childhood

Kahr, Brett Karnac Books ePub

Donald Woods Winnlcott, the youngest child of John Frederick Winnlcott and Elizabeth Martha Woods Winnlcott, entered the world on the night of Tuesday, 7 April, 1896, in the twilight years of Queen Victoria’s reign. At the time of Winnicott’s birth, Robert Salisbury, the Third Marquess of Salisbury (1830-1903), had only recently begun his third term as the Conservative Prime Minister of Great Britain, having assumed office once again in June of 1895. The English enjoyed an unusual period of peace, as the country had not yet plunged into the Anglo-Boer conflict, which would claim so many lives. It was a time of relative repose and of trust, when most people had no locks on their doors. The ladies wore corsets, the gentlemen smoked cigars after their evening meal, and most of the landed and monied citizens of Great Britain took pride in the increasing size and the international stature of the Empire.

The parents of the healthy new addition to the Winnlcott home dubbed their son “Donald”—a prophetic name that derives from the old Celtic word meaning “mighty”. The Winnlcott family lived in the restful English coastal town of Plymouth, Devon, far from the hustle and bustle of London. They had lived in the West Country for many generations. In all likelihood, the family surname derives from the Old English “Winn”, possibly meaning “friend”, and from “Cott”, meaning “home”. One can even locate a village called “Winnicott” on the map of Devon.

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Medium 9781782205050

Chapter Eight: Extraordinary Therapy: On Splitting, Kindness, and Handicapping Mothers

Karnac Books ePub

Alan Corbett

Estela Welldon's influence spreads far beyond the forensic field, and in this chapter, I examine the impact she has had upon the birth and development of a relatively new specialism—namely, psychoanalytic psychotherapy for patients with intellectual disabilities: a body of work known, increasingly, as forensic disability psychotherapy. To apply psychoanalytic understanding not only to the sexual offender, but also to the sexual offender who has an intellectual disability is an audacious act and perhaps one that could only flourish under the remarkable influence of a visionary thinker and practitioner.

The grandparents of psychoanalysis all tend to be extraordinary, to varying degrees. And in trying to make sense of Estela Welldon's role as one of the grandparents of forensic disability psychotherapy, I have found myself wondering whether her unique qualities of clinical bravery and radical thinking, which she personifies, are actually the essential components of being a forensic psychotherapist or, indeed of being a disability psychotherapist.

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Medium 9781855752368

11. My experience of Winnicott

Karnac Books ePub

Hugh Gee

My tutor in psychology specialized in perception, and his tolerance of Freud and the dynamic branch of psychology was almost non-existent. At that time, I was unaware of the differences that existed within the field of psychology, and my own inclinations towards psychoanalytical concepts were treated with some degree of contempt by my tutor, who was constantly proclaiming that there was no truth in a concept unless it could be subjected to a repeatable experiment. He did not enlighten me as to the differing schools of thought, so I began to think that I was not suited to the study of psychology.

Winnicott had been invited by one of the student societies to give a paper. I had never heard of Winnicott, so it was by extreme good fortune that I attended his lecture. I had not realized how demoralized I had been made to feel by my tutor until I heard Winnicott’s paper. For me, it was not just a “breath of fresh air”, but more like the “kiss of life”. Later, when discussing Winnicott’s paper, my tutor’s prejudice became very obvious to me, but worse still, I could see how much my tutor was concerned with my complying with his views rather than helping me to acquire knowledge and develop my own ideas. This, of course, was an old scare, for as a child I had been forced to develop a managing persona in the face of my parents’ insistence on my complying. It was for that reason that I remember Winnicott saying, when he gave his next paper at Oxford, “I am allergic to propaganda”. This comment was made in response to a student saying how Winnicott “ought” to think about some subject.

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Medium 9781782203438

Cup 1: The Resurrection of Professor Sigmund Freud

Brett Kahr Karnac Books ePub

[Wilhelm Kerl approaches the table and then bows.]

WK:Willkommen im Café Landtmann, Herr Kahr.

BK:Thank you, Herr Kerl. I am very honoured to be here, and I am so grateful that you have agreed that I might interview Professor Freud in your historical establishment.

WK:Professor Freud has long been one of our most distinguished guests. We are very proud that he has chosen the Café Landtmann as his Kaffeehaus.

BK:Vienna boasts so many wonderful Kaffeehäuser.

WK:Ja, ja, we have many coffee houses, this is true. But if you are to interview Professor Freud, you must speak in the Viennese way. I can see that you did not learn your German in Vienna: am I right?

BK:You are correct.

WK:I know this because you placed the accent on the first syllable of the word Kaffeehäuser. That is what the Germans do. They will say Kaffee, meaning coffee in your language. We Viennese, by contrast, pronounce it like the French, and we say Kaffee. We place the accent on the last syllable, not the first. Professor Freud always asked for Kaffee. I think you need to know that.

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