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WPF Therapy

Based at London Bridge, WPF Therapy sees more than 500 clients each week in our modern, purpose designed centre. We also provide training for about 1000 people each year.

We are a well-established charity, proud of our reputation for high standards and with active membership of BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy), UKCP (United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy) and BPC (British Psychoanalytic Council). Our clinical service is accredited by BACP and our graduates are registered with BPC, UKCP or BACP.

We provide:

  • professional trainings and CPD in psychotherapy
  • training in counselling skills for people who work with people
  • a positive commitment to equalities and diversity
  • high-quality, affordable counselling and psychotherapy
  • a variety of therapies, short and long term, because people have different needs
  • support for mental wellbeing in the workplace.

Courses

Course

WPF Therapy Reading Group 2019 - 2020

This unique reading group is now entering its 15th year and has gone from strength to strength. We are delighted to be able to offer an opportunity to explore, examine and enjoy the books below. Our presenters have been stimulating and challenging, and have introduced us to new delights or opened up fresh vistas onto pre-loved favourites.

Although many participants have been trainees and practising counsellors or psychotherapists, everyone is welcome to attend. If you are thinking of attending for the first time or have enjoyed one of the previous sessions, why not tell a friend and encourage them to come along too. Please read the book before attending.

All are welcome to attend this event. Refreshments provided.

Friday 18th October 2019

The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro

Led by Stephen Crawford

Friday 17th January 2020

Exposure by Helen Dunmore

Led by Pat MacDonald

Friday 28th February 2020

A Good Enough Mother by Bev Thomas

Led by Jan McHugh

We are delighted that Bev Thomas will be joining us for this group. She is looking forward to taking part in the discussion of her book, as well as answering any questions. 

Bev Thomas was a clinical psychologist in the NHS for many years. She currently works as an organisational consultant in mental health and other services. ‘A Good Enough Mother’ is her debut novel.

Friday 3rd April 2020

Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty

Led by Jenny Riddell

Friday 15th May 2020

In the Woods by Tana French 

Led by Rayna Denitsova

The remainder of the programme will be published shortly.

There are still opportunities to facilitate reading groups, so please e-mail events@wpf.org.uk if you are interested.

Workshops

Workshop

Attachment in Later Life: Lost in a dark wood and in search of a guide: a lecture with Jeremy Holmes

In later life – do attachment principles still apply. Drawing on clinical, observational and personal experience, Jeremy will explore the psychodynamic ’tasks’ of the second half of life.

During this talk, Jeremy will touch on:

  1. the ‘reverse Oedipus’ and the challenge of letting go
  2. the evolutionary role of grandparents (literal and metaphorical) as culture-bearers
  3. what attachment research tells us about old age, adaptive and maladaptive
  4. Dante and Jung’s map of pathways to graceful endings.

Professor Jeremy Holmes MD FRCPsych was for 35 years Consultant Psychiatrist/Medical Psychotherapist at University College London (UCL) and then in North Devon, UK, and Chair of the Psychotherapy Faculty of the Royal College of Psychiatrists 1998-2002. He is visiting Professor at the University of Exeter, and lectures nationally and internationally. In addition to 200+ peer-reviewed papers and chapters in the field of psychoanalysis and attachment theory, his books include John Bowlby and Attachment Theory, (2nd edition 2013),   The Oxford Textbook of Psychotherapy (2005 co-editors Glen Gabbard and Judy Beck),  Exploring In Security: Towards an Attachment-informed Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (2010, winner of Canadian Goethe Prize) , The Therapeutic Imagination: Using Literature to Deepen Psychodynamic Understanding and Enhance Empathy (2014), Attachment in Therapeutic Practice (2017, with A Slade), and The Brain Has a Mind of its Own: Attachment, Neurobiology and the New Science of Psychotherapy (2020). He was recipient of the Bowlby-Ainsworth Founders Award 2009. Gardening, Green politics and grand-parenting are gradually eclipsing his lifetime devotion to psychoanalytic psychotherapy and attachment.

Workshop

Conviction Analysis: the importance of certainty with Lesley Murdin

We all need certainty to live our daily lives but anyone who seeks psychotherapy is suffering from convictions which may be unfounded or untrue. In her talk, Lesley will consider the role of conviction and being right for both patients and therapists.

 

Lesley Murdin practises as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. She teaches and supervises in many contexts and has considerable experience in running psychotherapy organisations. She has worked for the registering bodies UKCP and BPC, chairing committees over many years. She was CEO and National Director of WPF Therapy. She has published numerous books and papers including How Much is Enough? Endings in Psychotherapy and Counselling (2000) Setting Out: The Importance of the Beginning in Psychotherapy and Counselling (2005)Understanding Transference: The Power of Patterns in the Therapeutic Relationship (2009) How Money Talks (2012). Lesley’s latest book, Managing Difficult Endings in Psychotherapy It’s Time (2019) is about the difficulty of endings, but it is also about learning from the endings that we know have gone wrong as well as those that have worked well. It sets out how the psychological therapist can help a person to live well while life is available, and to face the endings that confront all of us with a need for honesty, and the acceptance of our human fragility. Therapists suffer through the fears and failures of the people they see as well as through their own endings. These difficulties can either help each one to be more understanding and helpful, or can lead to disaster. This book is about making sure that we use experience as well as theory constructively.

Workshop

Preconception in the Consulting Room: Lecture with Patrick Casement

“If we think about it, and often we don’t, almost everything we take into the consulting room is in the area of preconception. Throughout our training we have been learning to understand the minds of others in terms of what has been understood before. But the more we rely upon the thinking of others the more that may get in the way of our understanding the individual minds of those who come to us for help. I shall therefore focus upon what I regard as the “analytics space”, a space set aside for each patient. And I will focus on those ways in which we can monitor the analytic space, in order to notice how and when we are putting something into this which may not have to do with the patient we are then concerned with.”

 

Patrick Casement is a retired fellow of the British Psychoanalytical Society. He worked as a psychoanalyst for more than forty years, and has written several books and numerous papers on clinical technique. Most prominent among these is On Learning from the Patient, which, since its publication over thirty years ago, has been translated into many languages and used across the world by professionals, both in psychoanalysis and related fields.

From the beginning of his psychoanalytic training, and throughout his subsequent career, Casement was opposed to relying too heavily on particular theories in the consulting room. Instead, his clinical approach was to use whatever made sense with a particular patient in a particular moment; he was not concerned with where a theoretical or technical tool originated – from which thinker or school it emerged – as long as it was useful and true to the work he was doing with that patient. His experience in social work also instilled in him a certain pragmatism, which he retained throughout his analytic career. With regards to the analyst’s role, he returned often to Winnicott’s metaphor of the spatula, which can be shoved down people’s throats, or used playfully, experimentally and expressively. In the same way, he believes that an analyst should not impose theories on a patient, rather that he or she should allow him- or herself to be psychologically explored and played with by the patient.

Conferences

Conference

Freud, music and the unconscious with Stephen Gross (Lecture)

During this talk Stephen will use musical illustrations from the 10th to the 20th century, to show how music as well as language is able to express the unconscious mind. With both of language and music functioning as modes of communication mediating between the material of the unconscious and the listener.

A major focus will be on the fact that Sigmund Freud’s attitude to music tells us as much about the personal psychology of the man, as it does about the character of music itself. We shall see how Freud’s general mistrust and actual hostility to most music, with the exception of a couple of 19th century operas, was founded on two differing anxieties. The first being its power to penetrate to, and then activate, the dark forces and phantasies of the personal unconscious against which Freud was personally so resolutely defended. The other being that three of the major thinkers of the 19th century; the philosophers Arthur Schopenhauer and Friedrich Nietzsche, the former especially, and composer Richard Wagner all wrote significantly about music. In doing so they expressed ideas which could be understood as anticipating Freud’s own ideas about the unconscious and even psychoanalysis itself. Freud’s immense narcissism could not tolerate such possibilities.

With regard to the power of music we shall consider the degree to which the personal psychological life especially that of the unconscious is expressed in the music itself; as well as perhaps a collective unconscious and how that musical communication may be experienced by the listener. The combination of words with music will also be addressed.

Participants will leave this presentation, not only with some new insights into Freud himself as a result of his complex relationship to music, but also able to consider more fully the role that modes of art forms, particularly music, may have in expressing and communicating unconscious material. In addition, how for the listener, music might be seen as being as much of a mediator between the unconscious and the conscious mind as language itself.

Target Audience

This course is open to qualified and training psychotherapists and counsellors. The theoretical orientation of the workshop will be psychodynamic but practitioners of other modalities are welcome to attend.

All participants completing the workshop will receive a Certificate of Attendance for their Continuing Professional Development portfolio.

Speaker

Stephen Gross is a psychodynamic psychotherapist in private practice who qualified at the BAP in 1986. For over 30 years he has been working at WPF Therapy principally as supervisor and tutor. For the last 15 years has been facilitating the Ontology seminars. His play Freud’s Night Visitors was performed at The Freud Museum in 2012 and at WPF Therapy. IN 2018 his book Living in Language: Poetry and Prose was launched at WPF Therapy. He is particularly interested in the relationship between language and music.

Applications must be received by Thursday,11th June 2020. Booking will be final after receipt of payment.

If you experience any problems during the application process then please call or e-mail Training Administration on 020 7378 2050/events@wpf.org.uk in order to be sent an application form.

Open Days

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