Towards a shared language of pain: exploring the body in pain in the consulting room
For some, pain has been a constant in their life, as a part of illness or disability from birth, for others it can follow injury and trauma. Acute life threatening pain as an aspect of some medical conditions can bring an urgency to make sense of things at precisely the time when you feel least able to. Chronic pain is no less intense but sustains over time often with little hope of relief. Pain can also manifest with no known organic cause or be connected to emotional experience.
This training day will afford practitioners the space to explore the different ways that physical pain presents in psychotherapeutic work and to think about how best to support clients who are living in pain for whatever reason.
Clients whose physical symptoms do not respond contemporary western medical and pharmaceutical models often come to us feeling that they have failed or been failed by these paradigms. What is the psychotherapists role when we are working with somebody in both physical and emotional distress?
Therapy may be an opportunity to explore the impact of living daily with pain and illness, to reconcile feelings of difference, to process anger, loss and hopelessness, and to understand how this experience influences other aspects of self, for example sexuality or relationships.
Appreciating pain from both an outside in and an inside out perspective, the day will draw from socio-cultural, relational, and attachment theories as well as our own individual understanding and experience of pain. Hopefully empowering clinicians and clients to not lose sight of the power of finding meaning, attachment and connection in the face of pain.
About the host
Sarah Benameris a UKCP registered Relational Attachment Based Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist and supervisor who works with individuals and couples. She has a particular interest in the many roles of the body in our emotional and relational worlds.